Survival in the Shroud – Enshrouded Preview

Enshrouded is a survival game set in a post-apocalyptic world that has been destroyed by a mysterious phenomenon known as the Shroud, which distorts and mutates everything that comes under its influence. In Enshrouded you are a fireborn, one of the last descendants of the ancient kingdom of Embervale and its only hope for rebirth.

  • Developer: Keen Games GmbH
  • Publisher: Keen Games GmbH
  • Early Access Release Date: January 24, 2024

Embervale was a noble land. Its majestic hill-crowns were crowned with dense forests and lush grasses, like chrysolites set in the golden earth.
Its rivers, foaming and gurgling, brought life to all that grew and breathed on their banks. And its cities, built of stone and wood, witnessed many stories and destinies, full of joy and sorrow, hatred and love.
They searched for an elixir that would give them eternal life, and dug deep wells in the earth. But instead of immortality, they found the Shroud. It rose from the deepest depths and changed everything it touched. Not killed, but transformed, made it its own.

The world of the game is rich in places that are interesting to explore. Numerous ruins and camps of savages, caves and dungeons, abandoned mines and tombs, on the horizon there is a huge fortress. Many places are covered with the Shroud, in which the hero can stay at first no more than five minutes.
Exploring Embervale, you can find various items in the most unexpected places. Some of them are impossible to get to unless you have special pieces of equipment, such as a glider or a rope hook. You can’t get into some places without a lockpick, and sometimes you have to use explosives.

In battle, your hero can use both blades and small arms, and magical items like wands and staffs charged with elemental energy. Admittedly, the combat system brings back memories of Risen or Fable. Perhaps in Enshrouded it’s even a bit more clumsy, with simple repetitive combos and overzealous rolls.
Every enemy here is dangerous and relentless. Exhausted creatures that inhabit the murk creep out at night, armed with spears, shields, and primitive blades. They are slow but deadly. The savages carry something like sickles, and some carry massive, multi-barreled crossbows. Sometimes they are guarded by dogs.
Each missed blow deals the hero the heaviest damage. Enemy blocks are hard to break through, and you may not be able to escape from the encirclement. Even wolf-like predators and fat rat-like rodents are able to send the hero into oblivion with a few accurate attacks.

In this world one must be on the alert, carrying several weapons, repairing them at every halt, and always, always watching for provisions and torches if one intends to set foot on an unfamiliar path in the night or descend into the darkness.
Enshrouded features a voxel-based world that is destroyed almost entirely. The player is provided with a rich toolkit of blocks of different sizes and simple shapes from which he can build castles or entire settlements.

Unlike Valheim, to which Enshrouded is often compared, the physical laws do not apply to items, which gives much more room for creativity and greatly simplifies the process.In time, the hero will be sent to find other survivors – there are five in total, and each of them brings with them new recipes for crafting. For example, Oswald Anders specializes in blacksmithing. When he is rescued, the hero will be able to use the summoning staff to invite a craftsman to the camp, build a smelter and forge with his help and start making weapons.
The Altar of Flame gives the hero the right to build buildings around a small area at first. Over time, the flame can be strengthened, which will not only expand the boundaries of the domain, but also increase the character’s resistance to the Shroud.

In addition, only by sacrificing a flame sacrifice will you be able to zero out the talent points spent on development. Enshrouded features a decently sized tree with several densely sprawling branches, each of them leaning towards one of the specializations.Becoming a Survival Master will give the hero more stamina and better effects from food and potions. A ranger specializes in archery, an assassin has stealth skills, and a beast lord can receive support in battle from wild animals.
You can become a wizard, a battle mage or healer, a warrior or duelist, a knight of the vanguard, attracting the attention of opponents. Almost every branch has useful active skills, like backstabbing or multi-shot archery. Enshrouded also does not forbid to create hybrid classes.

At the moment from the key disadvantages of Enshrouded can be highlighted mediocre optimization. There are a lot of graphics settings here, there is also DLSS support. But regardless of whether you choose the super-performance mode, quality mode or balanced mode, the fps sags will feel decent.

Enshrouded is a great cooperative survival game with crafting progression integrated into the story narrative. With a nice room for creativity and a minimum of elements designed to significantly stretch gameplay. Fans of hard-hitting survival-genre projects to play with companions is recommended. Embervale can be saved.