When a young woman is afflicted with a mysterious ancient disease, she decides to go on a perilous journey to find a cure. Can she survive passing through the land of the orcs in order to preserve her life?
Erfigardr: A Nordic Tale is a kinetic visual novel in development by Ostrich Burger Productions. It is on Kickstarter until July 2nd.
The story starts with the game’s protagonist, Ina, a fierce twenty-two-year-old with a mysterious affliction. After Vikings attack and destroy a nearby village, Ina goes on a search for someone who can help her locate information about her disease. She eventually comes face to face with one of the attackers, and the two share a tense, heated moment.
Though we meet only two main characters in the demo, both seem very intriguing. Ina is a strong protagonist with little fear. The unknown Viking is aggressive and violent, but there may be more underneath the surface. Both characters have unique designs with attire that matches the game’s time period. The Viking warrior is suited in casual steel armor, while Ina wears a simple dress and has her hair braided.
There is intriguing lore put into place by Ostrich Burger Productions. There are several different races of people, including orcs. Despite never meeting one in the demo, we find out that they’re fearsome and dangerous creatures who dislike humans. The way the developers build up this information leaves the player anxious to find out more about the tensions between humans and orcs.
Erfigardr is a kinetic novel, which means it has no player choices. I’m hopeful that this will allow some of the lore and the main characters’ development to shine. I’d like to see more descriptions of the game’s location. We get a brief glance at it, but I’d love to see the setting more fleshed out in the full version.
Aesthetically, I wish the textbox and GUI had a Nordic feel to match the story and character designs. Ina’s sprite on the side of the textbox is rather small. Given her cute design, I’d like to see a close up so that I can make out her expressions better. Another critique, though minor, is that to advance text players have to click. Using the space bar will only remove the textbox from the screen. There is also no ability to auto-advance text.
Unfortunately, this demo contains placeholder assets, so I can’t fully comment on the backgrounds or music. However, what’s in place now does not ruin the immersion and fits the game’s theme rather well.
Erfigardr is a kinetic novel with an intriguing premise and equally promising lore. The demo is rather short but does give the player a nice sense of the kind of story that will be told. If you’re interested in grand fantasy tales with strong female protagonists, this is the right game for you, though be aware that there are no choices to be made.