Abyss Odyssey




Unusual folklore-based fantasy has violence, mild nudity.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The game dives into the world of centuries-old Chilean mythology, focusing on traditional concepts to do with good warring against evil.

Positive role models

The game's heroes (players can select from male and female characters) are the mental constructs of a warlock. They seem to be fighting the good fight, but their personalities aren't given much room to grow with all the frequent combat and exploration.

Ease of play

The first few areas ease gamers into the fray, and a training mode allows them to practice their fighting skills. But kids will be forced to figure out much of the game for themselves, and the lack of hand-holding could prove frustrating to less experienced players.


Players attack various creatures, humanoid and monster, with a mix of magic and bladed weapons, including swords and pikes. Combat is frequent, but there's no blood. Hits typically result in flashes of light and characters falling to the ground. Text describes some gory situations, including a bird woman who must eat her own entrails.


Some humanoid females appear as though they may be naked, but the color and texture of their skin makes it difficult to make out details. The sides of their breasts are clearly visible.

Not applicable
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Abyss Odyssey is a downloadable side-scrolling action game in which characters fight with bladed weapons and magic. There's no blood or gore, but combat is frequent, and some fighters are human or humanoid. Also, some female characters appear to be naked, though it's difficult to make out much beyond the sides of their breasts and hips. Teens with an interest in mythology may be interested in the game's exploration of Chilean folklore, which includes depictions of traditional warlocks and other magical creatures.

What kids can learn


Social Studies

  • cultural understanding


Thinking & Reasoning

  • strategy


  • cooperation
  • meeting challenges together
  • teamwork

Engagement, Approach, Support


Shifting tones from dark and ominous to swirling, light, and floral, the game's art nouveau design will inspire art-minded players. But its unforgiving and at times repetitive play design may turn off players who are easily frustrated.

Learning Approach

Kids will learn about Chilean folklore by absorbing stories as they're presented over the course of the game. They'll also need to formulate strategies and will have opportunities to work with others as part of a team.


No external supports are provided, and the game doesn't always explain everything clearly. Some players likely will need to go online in search of player-generated tips and tutorials.

What kids can learn


Social Studies

  • cultural understanding


Thinking & Reasoning

  • strategy


  • cooperation
  • meeting challenges together
  • teamwork

Kids can learn a bit about Chilean folklore, strategizing, and working as a team in this imaginative and unusual action platformer. It's no substitute for a good textbook -- or even an educational TV show -- but this game will provide players with an introduction to several concepts found in Chilean mythology, from shape-shifters to warlocks. They'll also have the chance to create and test tactics in complex real-time battles while meeting challenges as part of a team in safe online play. Abyss Odyssey is meant for fun, but it could spark a player's interest in learning more about the mythologies of cultures around the world. 

This Learning Rating review was written by Chad Sapieha

What's it about?

Set in Santiago, Chile, in the late 1800s, ABYSS ODYSSEY puts players in control of a hero who plunges deep into a pit teeming with fantastical foes. In reality, all the enemies are constructs of the consciousness of a powerful warlock. At first the game seems to be a standard action platformer with a fantasy twist, but it turns out to be much more complex than that. It combines elements of fighting games (via a surprisingly complex combat system) with the sort of character growth more common in role-playing games. Its rogue-like level design -- which means that each level is created by computer algorithms and will never look the same again, even on repeat visits -- brings to mind endlessly challenging games such as Spelunky. Plus, the online mode allows players to join together, teaming up to take down some of the game's harder bosses.

Is it any good?


Abyss Odyssey is a fever dream of a game. It feels like it was crafted by a designer who mashed all his favorite, seemingly disparate genres together and then wrapped them up in a stunning turn-of-the-century motif, creating a bizarre, beautiful, and defiantly unique interactive experience. It works -- most of the time. Diving into the Earth one randomly created chamber at a time and taking on whatever foes happen to lurk there can be a lot of fun -- and stressful to boot, given that death is semi-permanent. If your hero dies, you take control of another character and must try to return to a checkpoint to restore your hero to life.

That said, some players may take issue with the way the game is meant to be played. Losing progress can be frustrating -- even more so once you realize that the designers actually intended for players to die frequently and keep fighting the same enemies simply to level up their heroes. What's more, the interface is a bit finicky, making it difficult to attack with precision and avoid traps with deftly timed jumps. These issues make it harder to appreciate the blazing originality of the rest of the experience. Abyss Odyssey likely will find itself a cult hit among a particular audience of gamers. Others simply won't get it and will be too frustrated to bother trying to understand.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the depiction of female characters in games such as Abyss Odyssey. Why do you think this game's designers chose to make some of the game's characters seem naked? Does it add to the story, or did you find it distracting?

  • Most cultures are rich in folklore, though it tends to be disregarded in modern life. What did you like about the Chilean mythology described in this game? Did you notice any similarities between it and the lore of other cultures?

Game details

Platforms:PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
Pricing structure:Paid
Available online?Available online
Release date:July 15, 2014
Topics:Magic and fantasy
ESRB rating:T for Violence, Partial Nudity

This review of Abyss Odyssey was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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