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Savant - Ascent REMIX Review

Savant - Ascent REMIX Review

There has been an increase in remakes and reimaginings of existing games in the last few years. Savant - Ascent REMIX is an update of Savant Ascent that came out in 2013 with positive reviews. The developers promise to expand on that experience and retain what made it appealing to the players in the first place.

SavantAscentREMIX tower

There isn't a deep story in Savant - Ascent REMIX, but the little we do know is that the Philosopher's Stone is fusing everything in its path and has knocked the Alchemist down from the top of his tower. So now, as the Alchemist, you are trying to ascend the tower and destroy the enemies and characters that try to get in your way to stop you from reclaiming your castle.

SavantAscentREMIX difficulty

The new remixed game gives you a selection of difficulties: Easy Mode has checkpoints and you start with extra lives. Normal Mode is where you have checkpoints and extra lives are enabled, and the power gauge is filled. Then, if you really want to be challenged, try Hardcore Mode that has no checkpoints, no extra lives, and your power gauge starts empty.

SavantAscentREMIX tutorial

The controls are quite simple in Savant - Ascent REMIX, as you have very limited movement. If you are playing on PC, you have the option to use a keyboard or a controller; I opted for the gamepad as usual. Your character only moves left or right one space, so you use the left thumbstick to roll/dodge; if you want to jump, aim up. To fire at enemies, move the right thumbstick in the right direction; once the bar at the bottom is filled, you can use the left or right bumpers/shoulder buttons to fire a powerful charged shot that will blast through clumps of foes. That's it, sounds quite simple, right? I assure you this is a bullet-hell twin-stick shooter that would steal all your quarters if it were an arcade game. I have died a ridiculous amount of times!

SavantAscentREMIX dead

Most of the game's action takes place in a small area on a screen that scrolls while enemies and projectiles come at you from all directions. You need to react fast to take out these foes before they shoot or smash into you. Your light shots take out one enemy at a time, whereas your stronger shots can take out a cluster of enemies or deal a lot of damage to larger foes and bosses. Make sure you dodge and avoid the incoming enemy attacks by using the left thumbstick; you only have three hearts of health at the beginning and no way to replenish them, so be sure to try to conserve them, as the boss fights will be awfully hard with low health. Always shoot down the treasure chests that you see flying, as they may contain another heart container or broken disc pieces. If you collect all four pieces, you unlock a new song, which won't help with the Boss Battle, but it sounds awesome! Even with full health, the boss battles are hard. I died a lot while playing, though the game is pretty nice with giving you a checkpoint before you start a boss fight — if you select one of the easier difficulties.

SavantAscentREMIX enemies

Savant - Ascent REMIX will go into slow motion when a huge enemy like a serpent/dragon appears, so you have a chance to fire a large charged shot and destroy them. If you try to beat it with only the light shot, chances are it will crash into you before you have a chance to annihilate it. So be sure to combine your shots with dodging and jumping so that you take less damage.

SavantAscentREMIX elevator

At the top of an elevator, you fight a glowing orb boss that shoots smaller enemies at you. Once the first form is defeated, another mysterious character appears. This mysterious character looks like a smaller version of a Wario or Waluigi, and its name happens to be Vario. Each boss that you encounter in Savant - Ascent REMIX is challenging and requires quick thinking and reflexes to defeat, otherwise, you will be stuck in an infinite battle loop, and that's never fun.

SavantAscentREMIX boss

The music is great, upbeat, full of bass, and incorporates a bit of a magical feeling that the original game didn't have. The incredible music was created by Aleksander Vinter, a Norwegian musician who goes by the alias of Savant. The first game was more about the pounding bass mixed with chiptunes. It is the type of music you won't get tired of hearing, which is a good thing because of the amount of times you will be playing through the same sections over and over again. 

SavantAscentREMIX results

Once you complete an area, a page appears showing your stats and how many points you gathered during that run. You will also have the opportunity to return to that area at any point in time if you want to rechallenge it, as the stages can be selected from the Main Menu.

SavantAscentREMIX stageselect

The visuals, like the music, are great. There is so much detail and attention paid to the architecture of the sections of towers you visit as you ascend. The colour palette is made up of deep greens and vibrant purples that match the cape that the Alchemist is wearing along with his mask. It gives off a feeling of royalty with those gemstone-like colours.

SavantAscentREMIX mask

Savant - Ascent REMIX is a fast-paced game that will really challenge you. Once you get past a difficult area and realise that you will never have to play through it again — unless you want to — is an immense relief and very satisfying. If you enjoy twin-stick bullet-hell titles with amazing music and visuals, I highly recommend checking out Savant - Ascent REMIX. Just be sure to jump and dodge the projectiles coming at you, as you are in for a bad time if you don't. Trust me, I made this mistake more than a few times! Oh, if you have a Steam Deck, this game also works great there. Not that you need to pick up more titles, I'm sure!

SavantAscentREMIX powershot

8.00/10 8

Savant - Ascent REMIX (Reviewed on Windows)

This game is great, with minimal or no negatives.

Savant - Ascent REMIX is a challenging twin-stick shooter with a great soundtrack and beautiful visuals. If you love bullet-hell games, this is a title that you will want to try!

This game was supplied by the publisher or relevant PR company for the purposes of review
Alana Dunitz

Alana Dunitz

Staff Writer

Lover of all games, old and new!

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