Ascend: Hand Of Kul is originally an Xbox 360 exclusive game and is now ported to PC via Steam. This game is basically a spiritual successor to the Souls series, and you could see some of their similarities when you start playing this game. This game is heavily single-player focused so you don’t have to worry about lagging, although the game is built on a shared-world (think Demon/Dark Souls). As you start off the game, you are given a default Caos (your character) and 3,000 souls (which is basically in-game currency, you can purchase additional souls with real money too). From there you can buy different type of hairs, face, facial hairs, skin colours, armors & weapons. You are given three option to choose which path you want to go :Darkness, Light or Void. Each of them have their own unique benefit and able to grant you new spells that the other path doesn’t offer. The game tutorial is very well done. You have different types of weapons available, some of them have longer range & other short range but deal extremely high damage. The combo system is pretty basic since you can only execute a limited number of them. As you go further into the game, you will be able to invade many realms & areas. Some of them give you the benefit to call your little army. These tiny people will aid in your combat, although most of the time they deal little to no damage to the enemy. A good way to use them is to eat them to regenerate your health when needed. The game has a durability system, albeit done very poorly. Your armor & weapon will break more often and repairing is very costly, so instead you usually find yourself often buying new equipment. You can also perform finishing moves as well on your foes and this will grant you additional health and experience points. The game is pretty linear with some straightforward exploration.
The game looks pretty decent for a low budget title. Character models, terrain, texture details and environment is very well done. Though some of the area and world can get pretty dull and some of them have repetitive environments.
The soundtrack for this game fits very well with the settings. Voice acting is not bad. The sound effects are decent. Nothing too unique about the audio.
Long-Lasting Appeal: 5/10
I can’t say that this game offers much replay value. Once you completed the game,you can try out different paths to test out different spells. The game is pretty straightforward with no additional side quests to do. There is a PvP mode too but this will happen only when another player is trying to invade your realm. You can try to grind for levels but it doesn’t serve much purpose. The game also has survival modes you unlock as you progress through the game. PvE would be a nice touch but it seems that this game doesn’t provide any at all.
Final Verdict: 6.8/10
I say give it a try for those who like hack and slash game. The combat system can get stale after sometimes but it’s pretty enjoyable nonetheless.