Developer Thunder Lotus has announced that its wonderful Lovecraft-inspired Metroidvania, Sundered, is coming to Xbox One and Switch on December 21st, with a host of new features including co-op.
Thunder Lotus is calling this enhanced version Sundered: Eldritch Edition, as is befitting of the game's Lovecraftian themes. Sundered unfolds far beneath the earth, as protagonist Eshe, at the behest of a entity known as the Shining Trapezohedron, ventures ever-deeper through the labyrinthine, interconnected passageways of a desert ruin. Needless to say, long-lost civilisations, ancient forces, and unspeakable creatures from beyond the veil await.
As with Thunder Lotus' Nordic boss-rush adventure Jotun, Sundered is a beautiful experience - its strange corners and stranger creatures brought to life through hand-drawn, strikingly animated art. Its procedurally generated map, which subtly alters the peripheral parts of the world after each death isn't, admittedly, quite as memorable as those you might find in a more traditionally designed Metroidvania, but areas are distinctive and visually impactful.
What's more, any environmental shortcomings barely register when confronted by the chaos that Sundered intermittently unleashes, raining waves of enemies upon the player at the sound of a gong. While the ever-present threat of overwhelming hordes might sound wearying, these moments instead prove to be high-points, providing an opportunity to deploy your steadily expanding move set (equally useful when exploring), and to revel in Sundered's fluid, gracefully orchestrated combat. And that's before its monstrous, screen-spanning bosses step in.
Eurogamer contributor Edwin Evans-Thirlwell liked Sundered enough to give it a Recommended badge when he reviewed it last year, and Thunder Lotus' upcoming Eldritch Edition builds upon that already strong core. There's four-player co-op, a new quest chain through previously unseen areas, and a battle against the new Magnate of the Gong boss.
Sundered: Eldritch Edition will cost $19.99 USD (likely around £15.99) when it comes to Switch and Xbox One on December 21st, and Thunder Lotus notes that existing PC and PS4 players will also gain access to the new features via a free update, which releases on the same day.