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Raji: An Ancient Epic Is steeped in Hindu mythology

Raji: An Ancient Epic is one of the first games that really take a deep dive to showcase the beautiful world of Hindu mythology and Indian history. With the majority of games coming out that focus on American, Japanese or European history, it’s great to see one that focuses on the rich culture of Hinduism.

The first game out of India-based developer Nodding Heads. Which is a studio name I’m laughing at but I can’t decide if this makes me racist or not. Raji: An Ancient Epic caught my eye at Nintendo Indie World and today it launched on PC – Steam. The game is an impressive piece of artwork with simplistic action-adventure mechanics. If you like a relaxed story-based adventure that is steeped in beautiful graphics and historical lore. Then you’ll like Raji: An Ancient Epic.


The Story Of Gods And Demons

Set in ancient India, Raji: An Ancient Epic follows the story of Raji, a young girl who lives a simple life. She works as a circus performer alongside her beloved younger brother Golu. Unknownst to her, she’s been chosen by the gods to stand against the demonic invasion of the human realm. Seeking to avenge their defeat in the last great war from a thousand years ago, the demons have challenged the gods who humiliated them. First step, to invade the human realm.

One day, on the day of the Raksha Bandhan festival, the circus is suddenly besieged by demons led by demon lord Mahabalasura. The invaders slaughter everyone except the children, who are kidnapped. When Raji tries to defend Golu, she is struck down and left for dead. She later awakens to find that her little brother has disappeared along with the rest of the children. Determined to rescue Golu, Raji prays to Durga, goddess of war. The Goddess hears her plea and grants her the sacred weapon ‘Trishul’ and charges her with saving the children – and defeating Mahabalasura.


Stunning Visuals Of Ancient India

Inspired by Indian mythologies such as Mahabharata and Ramayana, and by the medieval architecture of Rajasthan. Every corner of Raji: An Ancient Epic is drawn in the Pahari art style and combines hand-painted textures, rendered in 3D. Coupled with traditional and cultural voice acting and music, the game is a visual and auditory feast of the senses.

The world of Raji: An Ancient Epic is varied with mystical environments and ancient Indian art that tell the story. From the authentic puppetry cutscenes and demon designs. to elaborate murals. The story plays out with primordial energy of the ancient Indian gods from Shakti, the legend of Garuda and more.


Overall Gameplay

Raji: An Epic Adventure is a casual and fairly linear journey offering minimal exploration, combat, simple platforming and some puzzles.

You’re first given the Trishul, a staff-like weapon at the beginning by the Goddess Durga. But throughout the adventure, you’ll acquire other weapons: a bow, a sword and shield and a boomerang-like projectile. You can even add a variety of elemental attacks to each of them. But for most of the game, you’ll mostly be relying on the Trishul and the Sharanga bow.

You’re able to get away with button mashing early on, but the added number of enemies in later sections will cause you to rely on Raji’s parkour moves. Such her ability to run up walls and leap backward over the heads of her foes. It’s a big hack and slashy and shouldn’t challenge players too much in this regards. If you’re a seasoned action-adventure player you’ll be playing without so much an afterthought. But for those who are a little newer to gaming, this will be a welcome game to play.


Raji: An Ancient Epic

A great game to spend an afternoon in, this shouldn’t take you more than a couple of hours to finish. I’d recommend it for casual gamers that are interested in story-based games and it’s even a wonderful game to play with your kids. Let them enjoy learning through gaming and the simple but encouraging storytelling the game has to offer. Raji: An Ancient Epic sincerely shines in its art and is a commendable first attempt for the studio. Out now on the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC.