REVIEW: ‘Remnant: From the Ashes,’ – “Swamps of Corsus” (PS4)

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Swamps of Corsus

Remnant: From the Ashes is a third-person survival action shooter developed by Gunfire Games and published by Perfect World Entertainment. The base game was released back in August of last year, but the first DLC, “Swamps of Corsus,” has recently been released. Remnant is set in a post-apocalyptic world in which players can travel to various planets, all of which are not only aesthetically different but also have different enemies, dungeons, and bosses, all the while following an overarching storyline. One of the worlds you visit is Corsus, a world dominated by swamps and whose inhabitants are both insectlike and hostile. It is here that the new DLC adds content.

Although the DLC content from “Swamps of Corsus” is immediately accessible, it isn’t intuitive on how to start it unless you explicitly read the description of the DLC. Most games following a DLC download have an in-game description on how to access the content, but Remnant does not. Because of this, it took me a moment to realize that you cannot access the DLC through the usual story mode. Instead, it has to be activated in either Adventure or Survival mode. Adventure mode allows players to pick a planet from the story mode and replay the area. Doing this resets the story and your progress on this planet, procedurally generating new areas and bosses. It’s through this mode that players can stumble upon the new enemies and areas from “Swamps of Corsus.”

In “Swamps of Corsus,” Corsus has become overrun by the hive mind Cult of Iskal. In order to defeat the cult once and for all, players must confront the Queen. However, if players are sympathetic towards the Iskal, they can instead choose to aid the Queen in completing the Iskal’s plan. This ability of choice isn’t unlike Remnant‘s core storyline but it’s nevertheless a nice addition. The Iskal were part of the base game, although were shallowly explained, so it’s also exciting to see the DLC focus on this interesting cult.

Personally, I felt that the original base game was weakest on Corsus in terms of storyline. The Queen was quite interesting but overall I spent very little time on Corsus during my first playthrough. The fact that “Swamps of Corsus” has players back on the swamp planet and adds more story is content I felt was really needed.

Playing Corsus in Adventure mode grants access to new bosses, dungeons, weapons, and enemies. The enemies and bosses themselves are interesting in both their designs and challenges. To keep with the overarching insect theme, the Iskal are insectile. However, although a few of the new enemies are similar to older enemies in attack capabilities, some enemies require different play styles to deal with, challenging players to be adaptive once more.

Swamps of Corsus

The new areas that come along with the Cult of Iskal are still underground. But, whereas previous underground areas looked like abandoned mine-shafts, these new areas take on a hive-like appearance with chitinous walls and membraneous doorways. Beyond visual aesthetics, the tunnels players traverse are dark and rife with hair-raising noises such as bug-like clicking and chilling whispers. Given that the Iskal are a hive mind, this new content is spot on.

“Swamps of Corsus” also comes with a completely new game mode: Survival mode. This mode is a rogue-like test of will in which players are thrust onto a random planet in a permadeath situation with only a pistol on hand. Before beginning, players have 1000 credits to set up their character with a combination of weapons, armor, consumable items, or abilities. The array of items available to buy is random each play and is highly costly so players need to be frugal. However, as players kill enemies, they level up, gain coin, and new items such as weapons. But, as time progresses, enemies get stronger. Enemies and players endlessly level up until players die which results in a hard reset.

Survival mode is extremely fun. Players can start Survival mode is one of a few difficulty-settings but even on normal difficulty, the enemies can get really challenging. Most of my time with “Swamps of Corsus” was spent in Survival mode. There’s just something addicting about starting a challenge with nothing but a pistol and your skivvies, building your character up as you go, all the while the threat of permadeath is lingering over your head.

On top of this, defeating bosses in Survival mode drops a new item: Glowing Fragments. This item was introduced alongside a new merchant in Ward 13, Whispers. Beyond Whispers being really cool looking and visually different than the other merchants you interact with, they allow players to buy cool armor skins using Glowing Fragments and credits.

Given that Corsus in the base game felt like the weakest planet in terms of content and storyline, “Swamps of Corsus” brings some much-needed content. The enemies and story are great in Adventure mode and Survival mode is really addicting.

“Swamps of Corsus” is available now on PC, Playstation 4, and Xbox One.

Swamps of Corsus DLC
  • 9/10
    Rating - 9/10
9/10

TL;DR

Given that Corsus in the base game felt like the weakest planet in terms of content and storyline, “Swamps of Corsus” brings some much-needed content. The enemies and story are great in Adventure mode and Survival mode is really addicting.