Immortals Fenyx Rising, Ubisoft’s latest open-world game set in mythological Ancient Greece, is pretty damn good. It’s even better if you shake up the standard control scheme.
By default, Immortals maps the attack inputs to the shoulder buttons: RB for light attacks and RT for heavy ones (on Xbox). For those who swear by the School of Face Buttons, this is an affront. You can technically customize the entire suite of controls how you see fit, but, seeing as there are so many various inputs in Immortals, you’re bound to encounter some interference. Throw your light attack to X, as is the way nature intended, and you’ve messed up your dodge and sprint inputs. Put your heavy attack on Y (another instance of nature’s will) and you’re interfering with five other actions. And then there’s the matter that, when you double up inputs on the same button, they’ll get recolored in the universal warning-sign hue of firetruck red.
This is all enough to make a player give up and fall back on the game’s wonky standard control scheme. But you needn’t give in. Take it from me. I’ve sunk a decent amount of time into Immortals—a bit shy of 25 hours—and appear to have nailed down a scheme that has largely worked the whole way.
First, put light attack on X and heavy attack on Y. You’ll see that your heavy attack now shares a button with the stealth attack, drop, interact, and summon mount actions, along with the input for Herakles’ Strength, the Godly move. You don’t have to worry about mixing up that last one, since you have to hold down LB to pull up the wheel of Godly Powers. Think of Herakles’ Strength not as Y, as the game says, but as LB+Y. You can leave stealth attack alone, too. Immortals will only let you perform a stealth attack when the prompt pops up, and precedence seems to go to stealth moves. I’ve kept drop on Y without issue, as well.
You’ll need to change the input for summoning your mount, as putting your heavy attack on Y seems to override that input. RT does the trick. Yes, on paper, that’s the input for shooting arrows and Hephaistos’s Hammer, but both of those moves require a second button: LT and LB, respectively. Again, despite what the game tells you, think of these as LT+RT or LB+RT, not as simply RT.
You’ll also note that your light attack is clashing with your sprint and dodge button. For whatever reason, Immortals sticks sprint and dodge to the same input no matter what you do. I swapped it to RB. Sprint on X is a strange choice as is.
The caveat to all of this—and it’s a big one—is that I can’t speak to how it affects the game’s parry, which is mapped, by default, to LB and RB. My playstyle focuses more on perfect dodges than perfect parries, and my gear loadout reflects that, so I tend not to parry often in Immortals. You might have to tweak a few things to make parries work, but the above should be a good baseline for an alternate control scheme.
Immortals isn’t the only big game from the fall that leans on shoulder buttons for standard attacks. There’s Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, another Ubisoft map game that uses RB and RT for light and heavy attacks. (If you remap attack inputs to the face buttons, be careful before hopping on your horse or wolf. You’ve been warned.) Godfall, on PlayStation 5, uses R1 and R2. Frustratingly, you still can’t shake those up.
And then there’s Ghostrunner, a first-person parkour game in which, by default, R1 is jump and R2 is attack. At first, I bristled at the layout, but soon found that switching the buttons to a more standard scheme featuring face buttons actually impeded my ability to tackle the game’s high-wire platforming. I reverted. Using the shoulder buttons for standard inputs in an action game isn’t a wonky design choice in and of itself. It just has to feel natural. In Immortals—in most third-person action games, really—the face buttons are where it’s at.