Iratus: Lord of the Dead (Early Access) Review – Are You Using That Body Part? ‘Cause I Could Sure Use it

Knowing everything abouth the lord of the dead: Iratus.

Iratus: Lord of the Dead
Unfrozen/Daedalic Entertainment

There are many video games out there that allow you to play as the bad guys. For instance, in most fantasy strategy or role-playing games, you usually have the option to play as dark elves, orcs, and undead, along with the usual roster of humans, high elves, and other goody-goody types. However, a few games out there have you playing the bad guys…and that’s it. Developer Unfronzen’s new title, Iratus: Lord of the Dead, is one such game.

Iratus: Lord of the Dead has a pretty nifty set-up. Iratus, an immortal necromancer of immense power, became a little too notorious in the past and caught the attention of a world-class group of arch heroes. This band of blue chip champions caught up with Iratus one day and rat-packed him. After dispatching our poor, poor necromancer, they entombed his undead corpse in a sarcophagus deep within the ground.

Learn the early access and skills for Iratus.

Of course, we wouldn’t have a game unless the dastardly (and rather resourceful) titular character hadn’t escaped, and that’s exactly where the game begins. Iratus is hell-bent on seeking his revenge on all of those silly little humans; especially those goody-two shoes, pesky heroes that locked him up in the first place. Yeah, he’d like to do a number or two on their corpses.

But first things first. And speaking of firsts (and firsts of firsts), the first order of business for our cantankerous corpse commander is to create his first gaggle of undead minions. You’ll start each game with your choice of some rather minor league underlings, such as skeletons and banshees and such, but you can unlock more potent types of soldiers as the game progresses.

As you defeat various bags of flesh in your immediate vicinity, you can conveniently collect their parts—we’re talkin’ hearts, bones, and the like. However, as you begin clearing out more far-reaching areas, thus encountering and (hopefully) vanquishing much more powerful foes, you can gain access to more valuable spoils of war.

Learning the early access map of Iratus.

While your lackeys are out menacing and killing things, you can engage in the busywork of building up your new base. In order to construct and upgrade buildings you’ll need a specific type of minion along with architectural parts. There are all manner of buildings types that you can erect, everything from ones that heal your tattered underlings to full health while they’re out in the field, to ones that scrounge around for body parts more efficiently. You can build you base up as you see fit and customize it to suit your individual playstyle.

When it comes to combat, Iratus: Lord of the Dead is certainly no slouch. If you’ve ever seen or played Darkest Dungeon, you’ll have an inkling as to what to expect here. Aesthetically, at least. However, unlike Darkest Dungeon, you need not concern yourself with puny humans and their stress levels, undead individuals don’t ever have to break a sweat, since they’re…well, dead.

Knowing the secret dungeon of Iratus.

But you do have to worry about them taking too much damage because once they’re gone, they’re gone for good—and therein lies the rouguelike aspect of the game. They can self-inflict damage as well. For example, although your banshees can emit powerful wails that can cripple your enemies, they can also cause a little bit of damage to themselves. There are a whole host of attack types that you can unleash upon your adversaries, everything from area-of-effect attacks, to immobilizing ones, and even assaults that drive your foes insane. It’s all great fun.

Iratus: Lord of the Dead features some exceptional writing and the voice work is on point too, which both lend themselves to the incredible atmosphere that the game engenders. The game’s pleasant, 2D graphics are also stylishly rendered and—combined with its edgy music—really serve to immerse you further.

Seeing the 2D stylishly graphics of Iratus.

Overall, of Iratus: Lord of the Dead is a really fun game that is very well put together. Although it does have a bug here and there, I’m sure the devs are already working away at squashing them. As it stands, this is one tactical-roguelike game that has a very promising future.

SCORE: 86%

Iratus: Lord of the Dead has some pretty nice looking graphics that make its tactical gameplay truly shine. However, you want to have a pretty beefy gaming PC or gaming laptop in order to play it at a decent framerate. So, you may just want to invest in a decent gaming rig:

 

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