While the original version of Insurmountable presented a pleasant mountaineering experience, the new 2.0 update has created a complete experience. Developed by ByteRockers’ Games and published by Daedalic Entertainment, Insurmountable 2.0 is available now on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S|X, Nintendo Switch and PC.
Insurmountable is, at its core, a game about climbing mountains. There are three main mountains that the player is tasked with climbing, with countless dangers littering the way to the peaks. There are also three playable climbers, each with very different courses. Players must figure out how to battle both the elements and unpredictable events to complete their ascents and progress through the story. The characters of Insurmountable are stuck in a time loop caused by the research station that serves as the game’s main base.
Besides reaching the top of the mountains, the goal is to unravel the mystery behind the time loop and break free from it. The original version had different smaller stories with each mountain, so seeing one continuous story that encompasses the whole game is already an upgrade. I found myself drawn to the mystery, and the drive to solve the mystery was genuine. The Research Center used as the main base camp helps tie the story together, creating a hub between ascents that allows players to manage and upgrade their gear in a way that fits within the story boundaries . Basecamp could have easily been a menu with no story contribution, but the fact that it matters adds a bit to the immersion I felt throughout my time with it. Insurmountable.
The history and setting of Insurmountable are cool enough, but the gameplay is the real highlight. Players climb the mountain simply by clicking on various panels to navigate the procedurally generated mountains. Choosing to climb too high too quickly can drain the player’s energy dangerously quickly, so the direction you decide to go is vital. You also need to sleep at night, and choosing to stay out of the elements versus finding a cave to sleep in was a debate I found myself constantly having. Your choices help unlock new missions based on the area explored, a nifty mechanic that makes the choices really matter. There are pros and cons to each choice, and the variety also helps with replayability.
While climbing, there are four main stats that you need to be extremely aware of. Health, energy, body temperature and oxygen are essential to complete the ascent. Items brought with the player can help keep these vitals in check, and more items can be found in random locations along the way as long as players are willing to risk exploring. I’m glad there are only four stats to track, as it can be quite difficult to adequately manage all of them. It’s the perfect balance of difficulty that makes climbs challenging without ever feeling completely impossible.
Visually, Insurmountable is absolutely beautiful. Watching my character brave the mountains from a bird’s eye view is incredibly satisfying, and watching the environment change depending on the weather or altitude was mesmerizing. The music also adds to the mood of the climbs, and despite the dangers my character was in, I felt surprisingly relaxed while playing.
Insurmountable is an absolute pleasure to play, and the 2.0 update ensures that I’ll be back to play quite often. Whether you want to play 20 minutes or 2 hours, Insurmountable is able to provide the perfect combination of entertainment and challenge.
Insurmountable is available now on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S|X, Nintendo Switch and PC.
Whether you want to play 20 minutes or 2 hours, Insurmountable is able to provide the perfect combination of entertainment and challenge.
Kyle is an Orlando, Florida editor, writer, and musician with a history covering video games, technology, and sports. He also thinks mayonnaise is the best condiment for hot dogs, which are sandwiches.