|Through the Never|
| T (ESRB)|
|Media Included||V2 optical disc|
The player takes control of Malice and controls her through the Never, which is known as the core of the Lifts' government and runs all of the functions keeping the Lifts stable. Malice's goal is to annihilate the Athenian plague, a dangerous disease spreading through the Lifts via the core and a mysterious villain hanging inside it. According to one of her few friends, known as Thermas, the area is dangerous and will corrupt her if she falls to the nasty vermin that make up the plague.
Through the Never is non-linear in form and basically has an open-ended world split into multiple sub-areas that Malice can work her way through. She can take down the bosses in any order before being able to open the gates of the plague's base. The world is massive in size, seemingly endless but Malice keeps a map that she writes in as the player progresses. Various paths boast varying levels of difficulty and speed, appealing to casual and hardcore players alike.
Chronologically, it is one of the final titles in the Zaxinian Lifts' first phase. This is also the first title to showcase features from other franchises, Harry Potter being this franchise in question.
Zaxinian Lifts writer was kidnapped from the real world by her longtime nemesis The Echeno and turned into the vessel for a hyper-complicated scheme! Wow, a weird self-insert?? Anyway, the Echeno uses the captive goddess body to create the Athenian plague via the strange powers of the Zaxinian Lifts' core energy source, exposing the disease to every corner of the Lifts and threatening populations across that universe while also exposing her demonic core! Deciding that she'd rather have the universe healthy and stable, Malice places the whole Lifts in front of her life and decides to head into the Never, the core of the extended universe. Her goal is to destroy the source of the Athenian plague and to save the Lifts from further exposure of the toxic material, which she eventually succeeds at throughout the course of the game!
After breaking most of the Athenian plague devices and taking down all the bosses, Malice confronts the Echeno in the Athenian Abyss after saving the writer from a grim demise! Breaking down the Echeno took a while, but eventually it gave up and retreated, letting Malice save the world and take care of the plague. After cleaning out the Never, Malice took a long, long nap... little did she know, however, that clearing out the Never's guardians the way she did left it open to criminal hostage! Hence its important role in Shadows of Mallory...
Before the player starts the game, the player can choose the difficulty of the game from a scale of 0.1 to 10. 0.1 is extremely easy and has very few challenging obstacles. Most enemies appear to be confused and don't know how to attack. However, collectibles and clothing will not really appear on that low of a difficulty. 3 is considered "Just Easy" and has some decent challenge and introduces all the collectibles and scrolls. 5 is average difficulty, 7 is hard, 9 is expert, and 10 is "literally insane". The higher difficulty, the more valuable the game's ending will happen to be. They cannot change difficulty of their file during gameplay.
As aforementioned, the player takes control of Malice and leads her through the Never world. The routes that the player takes normally does not matter, as the game is intended to be explored at the player's own pace for the most part. It is required to defeat all the Guardians in order to open up the gateway leading to the final dungeon and boss, but apart from that leisure is the primary pace here. Some areas cannot be accessed without acquiring certain areas, as in the inspirational Metroid franchise, so to keep the player searching and moving around, but these situations aren't common and won't disrupt pace much.
Whilst exploring the Never, the player can destroy up to 100 Athenian plague devices, which often block off access to a certain hallway. They are often seen sprouting toxic gases into the air and swiping with claws. Upon their defeat, they will break and the place they're preventing access to will open up for the player to explore. Depending on the amount of devices destroyed, the ending of the game can change. There are 50 Valerie Coins, which are collectible objects that hide in tough-to-find spaces and add different types of memorabilia to Malice's room at the end of the game.
Malice has various ways of attacking. With her Hyperwand, Malice can cast different spells to cause harm to her enemies or open up pathways through the Never world. She can utilize dark magic to kill/disable enemies or use simple magic like lock-picking to open her way through non-cursed doors. Not every spell is available at first for Malice -- to find more, she'll have to find scrolls, which are usually in plain sight and easy to find. Some new spells add to her offenses and others make navigating the worlds easier. Malice can otherwise dish her tentacle-and-skull arms at her opponents for combo attacks.
Her default abilities include being able to use her tentacle arms as grappling hooks, use said arm to burst through wooden arms, and cast Paralysis Charms on her opponents. She can also use magic to light up dark areas. She can only take up to 100 damage at first, but via finding Health Tanks set up all around the world, she can become able to take up to 3000. When she defeats enemies, she has a chance to gain statistic boosts from them, which can include Offense, Defense, Speed, and Jump. Some enemies can rarely drop articles of clothing, which Malice can use to customize herself later.
If the player is in a "Wi-Fi supported" space, they can choose to warp to the center of the map, which is where Malice's temporary home resides. There, she can change her outfit and alter her statistic balance to her liking. Thermas, one of Malice's few friends, rests at this home and offers items for Malice to purchase, and she can only gain them by trading him the enemy bones that she finds along the way, with the bigger the bone, the more value it has. She can choose to purchase items that can aid her along on her quest, or instead purchase heavy metal tracks that she can listen to on her adventure.
- Please note that the controls are just the default settings and that most of the game's button mappings can be changed through options.
|Left Thumbstick||The left thumbstick's role is to move Malice around the map, with left and right used for moving. It can also be used to navigate between options.|
|Right Thumbstick||The other thumbstick can be flicked in any of eight directions to show the player what lies around them and what obstacles to watch out for.|
|Red Action Button||This is the default jump button; jumping while in the air will cause Malice to do a double jump. It can also be used to confirm options.|
|Green Action Button||By holding down the green button, Malice can sprint and eventually begin running. It allows the player to cancel actions or options, polar opposite of the red button.|
|Blue Action Button||Tapping the button will allow Malice to fire off a blast of magic, and holding it will cause her to charge her ability if it can be charged.|
|Purple Action Button||Pressing this button would allow Malice to cancel out whatever item she has at the moment. This allows her to also cancel out magic that she doesn't need to use.|
|Left Shoulder Button||Holding this will allow Malice to aim diagonally upwards with her wand, or skip all dialog (unless it's important).|
|Right Shoulder Button||Holding this will allow Malice to aim diagonally downwards with her wand, or skip all dialog (unless it's important).|
|Left Inner Trigger||Allows Malice to switch between Offense, Defense and Support spell categories.|
|Right Inner Trigger||Allows Malice to select any magic spell she may have at hand currently.|
|Start||Via pressing Start, the player will pause the game. They can see their overall progress and scroll through it using other buttons.|
|Select||By pressing Select, the player will do a quick pause and be able to see their status and conditions, as well as the clothes they're wearing.|
Throughout the course of Through the Never, Malice can learn a lot of different spells that can help her in battle or in the overworld. In Malice's gameplay, there is a Spell meter -- using spells will drain the meter, and she'll become unable to use spells when it runs out. Through defeating enemies, she can reearn her magic for usage against enemies or to help herself. Here is a defined list of them.
|Charm||Charms are spells that add or change properties about certain objects. They are likely to be very useful for someone like Malice, and most can be found at nearly any point in Malice's quest.|
|Transfiguration||Transfiguration spells focus on the alternation of an object's form or appearance, and are somewhat complex to perform. They usually involve changing the molecular structure of said object.|
|Unforgivable||These curses are only learned late in the game and use a lot of Malice's magic power. The Killing Curse will take out the entire Spell meter, leaving Malice without her magic for a short period of time.|
Defeating enemies will often have them drop ingredients to potions, which can be very useful when dealing with certain scenarios. As with spells, a good number of these originate from the Harry Potter world where Malice was raised in. There are some specific potions though that were created solely for the game. These potions can be stored in an inventory for later use. Potions are prepared at home, where players can chop up/fry/boil/stir ingredients to form these potions. If something isn't formed correctly, it will come out as garbage that restores 1 HP.
Sometimes, potions will drop instead of ingredients, which applies to simple potions like the Noxious Potion.
|Bloodroot||Poisons the target, ripping them of their health. More health is drained with time.|
|Cure||Relieves the user or target of all status conditions, with no exceptions.|
This potion is dropped from enemies only.
|Exploding||Works much like a bomb, creating an explosion wherever it's thrown and breaking weak walls.|
Ingredients: Ice pop, Red spider, Flowers
|Felix Felicis||Grants super luck to Malice upon usage, allowing her to land critical hits easily.|
Ingredients: Ashwinder egg, Squill bulb, Murtlap tentacle, Tincture of thyme, Occamy eggshell, Powdered common rue
|Garroting Gas||Chokes and suffocates any target that it hits, paralyzing them and making 'em numb.|
Ingredients: Death grain, Nitrogen bottle
|Herbicide||Kills plants and other nature-themed objects, which can help clear obstacles.|
Ingredients: Flobberworm mucus, Horklump juice, Lionfish spines, Standard Ingredient
|Invisibility||Drinking this potion will render Malice invisible for a short amount of time, able to pass through mesh.|
Ingredients: Cherries, rotten eclair
|Jumpy||Consumption of this drink will make the victim bounce uncontrollably, breaking concentration.|
This potion is dropped from enemies only.
|Killer||If the Killer Potion is consumed, Malice will explode energy that kills all on-screen foes.|
This potion is dropped from enemies only.
|Love||Fills a partner or enemy with love, prompting them to work for Malice's needs until death.|
Ingredients: Ashwinder eggs, Rose thorns, Peppermint, Powdered Moonstone, Pearl Dust
|Moon||Consumption of the Moon potion will fill Malice with a free supply of magic.|
This potion is dropped from enemies only.
|Noxious||This particular potion can be tossed at enemies in order to poison them.|
This potion is dropped from enemies only.
|Polyjuice||Causes Malice to change shape to assume an enemy's temporarily, bypassing security.|
Ingredients: Lacewing flies, Leeches, Powdered bicorn horn, Knotgrass, Fluxweed, Shredded Boomslang skin, enemy hair
|Queen||If this is consumed, Malice will have hyper-strengthened attack power temporarily.|
This potion is dropped from enemies only.
|Revive||If Malice is holding a Revive Potion upon her defeat, she will use the potion to revive herself.|
This potion can only be purchased from Thermas.
|Strength||Boosts a random stat of Malice's permanently, but only slightly. Can help in a pinch.|
This potion is dropped from enemies only.
|Teleport||Using the Teleport potion will take Malice to the nearest NPC character that isn't an enemy.|
This potion can only be purchased from Thermas.
|Vitamix||Through consumption of this potion, Malice will be filled with energy, able to run at high speeds.|
Ingredients: Wormwood, Asphodel Root, Monkshood
|Weakness||Drains the target of defense, leaving them open to just about any attack.|
Ingredients: Rotten ingredients x 3
|Zoom||Immediately upon being finished, the potion's effects will rip Malice through a fair distance.|
This potion is dropped from enemies only.
The game takes a drastic visual change from previous games developed by scorpistar⭐/TimeStrike. Through the Never utilizes a sprite style that's highly inspired by Nickelodeon cartoons from the mid-2000s, especially Danny Phantom and other series created by Butch Hartman. The game supports full HD and is designed to look as fresh and well-drawn as it could be. Graphics are sharp and as detailed as could be "without overdoing it". The game is violent in nature, with blood spilling from enemies on defeat and featuring some lethal weapons. Most of the levels appear to look rather dark in tone.
All the territories featured in the game are extremely vast in size, each boasting their own individual gimmicks and design features. The maps are designed to be quite explorable, with many hidden passageways and ways to solve the puzzles featured on the maps. They're designed to make use of all of Malice's abilities, making just about any new spell for Malice one that can be used to get through certain areas. The pace of the game is totally dependent on the player's; there are routes developed for speedsters and others designed for more casual players.
Through the Never sports an atmospheric and rather moody soundtrack, with each individual music track explicitly composed to fit its use. Much of the music falls under the hard rock genre, but there are some tracks that represent heavy metal or rap. Depending on the situation, some of the music may be lighthearted or be downright frightening and downbeat. Multiple tracks tend to feature sampling from popular music (with permission) and bring the game a "bizarre, unsettling feel". Because of this, many of the game's tracks share similarities with another game created by the company, BowieQuest.
There are various characters in Through the Never, with four being main and a great number being support or antagonistic characters.
Malice can be customized and given different clothing and outfits to wear. You can also dye her hair and restyle it as you please. Here are a list of clothes and outfits that can be worn, and extra accessories. Most of these items can be found randomly on the ground, dropped from enemies, or purchased from Thermas/Syande. Players can use any color for their clothing, they can fill in the different parts of their clothing with a provided fill tool and take any color from the limitless color-picker. As such, players can use more than one color on most articles of clothing, notably on the ones with stripes.
|Upper Body||Bikini Top · Coat (Long · Torn) · Hoodie (Long · Short Sleeves) · Parka · Robes (Long · Thin) · Shirt (Long · Striped · Sweatshirt) · Team Unten · Torn · With Pattern) · Sweater (Vest) · Suspenders · Top (Crop · Tank · Tube · Turtleneck)|
|Lower Body||Bikini Bottom · Jeans (Striped · Torn) · Leggings · Normal Pants (Stripes) · Shorts (Stripes · Torn) · Skirt (A-line · Circle · Lehenga · Pleated) · Sweatpants · Yoga Pants|
|Footwear||Boots · (Cleats · Fancy · Military · Tall) · Heels · Normal Shoes (Shoelaced) · Slippers (Bunny · Fuzzy) · Soap Shoes · Socks · (Long · Striped · Rainbow) · Stocking (Fencenet · Hold-ups · Knee-highs)|
|Headgear||Cat Ears · Devil Horns · Dog Ears · Glasses (Contact Lens · Rounded · Square · Sunglasses) · Halo · Headphones (w/ mic) · Headband (Ninja) · King's Crown · Queen's Crown|
|Outfits||Agent · Angel · Baseball · Biker · Builder · Business · Cowboy · Cyborg · Devil · Dragon · Fancy · Fighter · General · Hockey · Kimono · Kung Fu · Mage · Maid · Medieval Knight · Miner · Ninja · Nurse · Pirate · Plumber · Samurai · Schoolwear · Tuxedo · Vampire · '80s Disco|
|Suits||Astronaut · Fandraxonian · Mecha Suit · Panda Suit · Pikachu Onesie · Scarecrow Armor · Steampunk · Teddy Bear · Toroko Bias Suit|
|Character Suits||Adexene · Corrina Faircloud · Crow · Crymsia · Elize Bolt · General Scotch · General Syande · Iron Mask · Leah Needlenam · Mallory · PAIN-T 2.0 · Pierce Hazel · Rachel Harel · Razz · Rubelline · Sakeena Metals · Sheriff Bowie · Silver Heartgold · Sinicini · Syi the Scarecrow · Teaca · The Threat · Unten · Valerie Heartgold · Zonas|
Malice can purchase and collect heavy metal (and related) albums from Thermas, all of which costing a total of "200 mini-bones" or "10 big-bones". There are a total of 25 available for purchase, all hand-picked by the creator of the game. These can be played in place of music already presented in the game and/or for the player's leisure. A good number of these albums are from the more famous parts of these bands' careers.
|Master of Puppets|
|Rust in Peace|
|Among the Living|
|Reign in Blood|
|Ace of Spades|
|Number of the Beast|
|No More Tears|
(System of a Down)
|Bonded by Blood|
|Appetite for Destruction|
(Guns N' Roses)
|Vulgar Display of Power|
|Don't Break the Oath|
|Love at First Sting|
|Cat Scratch Fever|
|Welcome to Hell|
|Lightning to the Nations|
|Love It to Death|
|How Will I Laugh [...]|
The Never is home to several areas within itself, the world itself divided into varying territories. Each territory boasts a different theme and environment to differ themselves from the others, making it somewhat to tell which area the player is in. Depending on the territory that Malice is currently passing through, the obstacles and enemies there will vary greatly, as will the visual themes. In each distinct "Never" territory, the player can engage in a major boss fight. Usually, they will have to be found on the player's own accord, but boss battles occasionally have to triggered through other means, like meeting certain conditions (aka defeating all the Guardians).
All locations featured in the Never were never seen before in the Zaxinian Lifts, being all-new locations that are directly part of the Lifts' overworld rather than taking place on the planets hosted by them. The locations are all pretty well tied together besides the Athenian Abyss, which resides a fair ways under the rest of the Never and is incredibly dangerous to go to. Despite the territories having very distinct themes and motifs, they're all connected together and share a purpose: to raise humans into strong and trusted adults that can protect the Lifts from disaster even after the fall of the already existing God, Fandraxono.
Hanging below the Lifts are a bunch of "sea docks" that sit high in the skies. These lead into the Never dimension, which is the underground system that holds up these gigantic towers. The majority of these docks are stable and flat enough to run across, and there are many moving platforms present that elevate players around and lead them to new locations. Some are unstable though, and crumble underneath Malice's feet.
The Never Docks seem to have a permanent nighttime atmosphere, for the sun never appears to shine in this region. Platforms in this territory are usually rusty and show some signs of wear and tear. The close one is to the Never's core, the less urban and the more dangerous the area seems to be. Statues representing major heroes and heroines of the Zaxinian Lifts can be seen erected around the docks.
Through exploration in the docks, one can find a bunch of portals that lead to the different areas in the Never, but they aren't accessible until the player opens their equivalents in other territories. Near the entrance to the core, some of the docks will revolve around a huge statue representing Fandraxono, the Lifts' lyre player and God. This statue can be entered, where lots of treasures reside.
This area contains no Guardian or boss battle.
A large, looping walkway serves as the hub of the Never, leading to each different location in the Never apart from the Athenian Abyss. The player moves around an obstacle course that becomes significantly tougher as they progress, with footing becoming unstable or unusable. In the center of this area is a giant, glowing red sphere which sprouts flames as it rotates around. This is the energy source of the Lifts.
The area seems to look mechanical in nature, with glass walls shielding the player from the flames and heat that power up the core. Multiple spinning cogs and gears are in place, and several "nut" platforms can be rode on to reach new locations. With each Guardian's defeat, the core begins to look more damaged and becomes more and more dangerous as the Athenian plague continues to become more menacing.
Initially, walking through the area is a breeze, with no dangers to speak of. Heightened security however will begin to install itself into the location as the area begins to suffer more and more damage. Fires that weren't hazards before will get in Malice's path, forcing her to either take new routes or douse them out with water. The core will also gain heightened security, sending out waves of flames at the player upon sight.
Hanging low in the Never is the haunted Vanish Valley, where ghosts and supernatural beings alike reside. The ground is a pale white and the skies are a deep black, and nothing seems to remain intact or be real until one gets close enough to them. The area seems to be a maze with walls that constantly change without warning. It's a home for sirens, zombies, and several Debutante-inspired enemies, which are all quite threatening to Malice.
The area seems to shift between an evening and early morning atmosphere, never looking entirely dark but always ominous. Crooked trees and grey soil are some of the area's defining traits, as are steep drops and the occasionally vanishing houses. When inside buildings, pathways will occasionally change up by magic, leading Malice to areas she's never seen before...or teleport her all the way across the map.
Ghosts are very much a hazard in the valley, with spirits taking over inanimate objects such as tombstones in a vain effort to attack Malice. Shooting stars are also an obstacle, occasionally falling down on higher-up areas and knocking Malice away on contact. If they hit the ground though, Malice can stand near them and absorb their power to refuel her magic supply. At sea places, the moon's shine can form tidal wave bridges for Malice to safely cross.
Boss: Corpse Lord
This beach is anything but safe, contaminated by radioactive activity from a nuclear accident many years ago. Malice needs to be quick when passing through toxic regions and stay on high-ground. Only the blue parts of the beach waters are safe to cross through. The Bleach Beach is hostage to all sorts of sharp obstacles, from beds of broken glass to spiky pillars that do plenty of damage on contact with the player.
It appears to be morning on the beach, with a sun lazily hanging above in the distance. There are no clouds except for those being generated by a broken-down power plant in the distance. The beach appears to be apricot-color with its sand, and the water ranges from blue to green. As a nod to modern-day civilization, lots of garbage can be spread throughout the beach, with some of these being harmful to step on.
The player will find themselves hanging around on the docks of the beach often, jumping over glass pits and avoiding falling into green patches of sea. Enemies here are chimeras or mutations of well-known creatures like crabs and sharks. The docks can become labyrinth-like later in the area, with several "floors" available to be climbed. Many of these docks also cross over the dangerous seas. Most places that can be entered here are fragile.
The Skeleton Stream is a chilly, unsettling region with many caverns making up the landscape as well as a continuously flowing river of a very low temperature. The area is very foggy and difficult to see through, and multiple skeletons wielding various weapons attack Malice and any of her friends on sight. There are black areas of the river that can only be crossed by raft, which is usually operated by Death itself.
Skeleton Stream seems to have an afternoon-feel to it, but the blue skies are obscured by a thick white fog. Much of the course is difficult to see thanks to this. The waters are dark blue and the ground is a pale brown, with multiple hills appearing to share the colors of the stream. Many objects and enemies show up to Malice as silhouettes before she gets close enough to them, allowing for some fairly cheap damage if the player isn't careful.
The various enemy hordes residing in the Skeleton Stream will be Malice's main problem, but the currents of the stream will fight the player's controls half the time, so they must be adjusted to. Areas of the territory appear to be covered in thick snow, which isn't too easy to walk through and can leave them vulnerable to attack. Sheets of ice sometimes cover parts of the stream, which shatter when attacked. Those can be skated on, though.
Boss: Bonehead Max
Made from solid ice, Frosty Fortress is a location held high up in the Never world, operated by mechanical snowmen that manage weapons that fire snowballs as if they were bullets. The area makes exceptional use of Malice's aerial tactics, forcing her to use wall jumps and slides to maneuver her way easily around the tricky area. Most of the ground is icy and can make certain jumps or movements difficult to properly perform.
Frosty Fortress is accompanied with bright laser lights, an urban city in the background, and a bunch of security guards. It seems to take place in the evening, with a red sky overhead that embodies a wonderous sunset. Designs featuring various different enemies seem to be emblazoned into the structural work of the fortress, as are a bunch of different maps. Inside the fortress, things look very cold and just about everything screams a blue color.
The frosty ground of the territory means plenty of slipping and sliding, which becomes a very dangerous obstacle when around spike pits and other hazards. Puzzles are prominent throughout the area, with many requiring to be solved in order to pass through the corridors. However, in most scenarios, most puzzles have more than one way to be solved, leading to different areas. In cases where only one solution can be found, a large award awaits.
Boss: Wind Master
Midnight Mountain is the place of hazards, having tough winds that push Malice around and could throw her off course. Along this, there are many lava lakes, plenty of mini-grottos, and a bunch of small and annoying enemies that can infuriate the player pretty easily. The bottom area of the mountain is more tame and is easier to cross, but the area closer to the top is very windy and difficult to survive, as the winds can sweep her off the mountain.
As indicated by the name, the territory's setting seems to be at dead night. Obstacles are practically copyrighted by this course, with rolling boulders and iron crushers found throughout the immediate area as well as hundreds of enemy hideouts. Venturing inside the mountain's caves will force the player to go through a maze, but there are many ways out and they always push the player either up or down the mountain.
The area seems to look rather busy, with many enemies at work in both the foreground and background, and lots of magma swelling throughout the underground. Occasionally, the mountain will blow its top, sending volcanic material down the sides, doing lots of damage to Malice on contact. If Malice decides to venture inside the mountain itself, she can find all sorts of rare treasures and gemstones -- but must make it out before another eruption.
Boss: Iron Man
The Pyromanic Pipeworks are a tough place to navigate, with the various big pipes set around the area spewing fire pillars and large fireballs. The area is sizzling hot and various places seem to appear kind of distorted with all the heat present. The area is kind of maze-like, but Malice can change the direction of the maze by utilizing a dousing spell to put out flames and hit blocks to change the directions of certain pipes to get around.
Multiple pipes set around the area can be used for getting around, Malice having to crawl through the pipes and take care of enemies that are in her path. The place is entirely held inside a building, but windows indicate that the area takes place in a very early morning. Bright fires light up the place, and multiple cogs and gears can be found, each of which looking similar to those featured in the Core's walkway.
All sorts of fire are the bane of Malice's existence here, with flame pillars and flamethrowers being some of the most abundant hazards. Lava geysers and gas explosiosn are also harmful and can quickly put an end to Malice's life if the player isn't careful. Sometimes the player will have to fire themselves out from a cannon to reach across long distances, which can involve shooting over giant lava pits or over dangerous pipe zones.
Boss: Adrenaline Machine
This hotel is massive in size vertically and contains a plethora of floors that contain miscellaneous challenges and enemies to battle. Through means of elevators and platforms hanging on the sides of the hotel, Malice can make her way up and down the building. Closer to the top of the hotel, things will become blurry and disoriented, and the maze leading to the top will become very tricky to properly cross.
The skies are bright blue here, with multiple clouds surrounding the walls of the hotel. Hotel themes differ from floor to floor, with portraits of Zaxinian heroes and heroines being found all over the walls. On the floors a character has portraits on, some of their traits will be featured there too as obstacles. For example, if a Bowie portrait is present, an "earthquake" will occur and the player will have to navigate through a rocking room.
Outside the hotel, the view is different. The player will have to climb wooden staircases and be careful to not step into broken steps that can set Malice back quite a distance. There are some other platforms, but they are uncommon and often host enemies or security guards that can throw Malice off track. The hotel is home to many portals, which can be used for Malice to teleport towards other worlds.
Thrash Town is a music-themed town with a bunch of platforms consisting of keyboard keys bouncing the player higher up into the air. A bunch of guitar platforms can used as springpads to launch Malice to higher locations. By hitting drums, Malice can open up doorways or find her way into certain houses to obtain goods. Metal albums are most often found here in Thrash Town, where they are sometimes lined up on shelves.
The atmosphere has purple skies, with clouds there featuring skull-related imagery. Buildings seem well-built and possess a very solid structure, and plenty require keys in order to be entered. They can often be found on the ground or inside treasure chests. NPCs here are based on real-life musicians and help lead the player throughout the region. In some cases, they will help the player fight the Guardian of this territory.
Multiple music-themed obstacles reside in Thrash Town apart from the guitar and drum gimmicks. By hitting specific xylophone bars, Malice can open up passageways for herself to discover. Through blowing into a flute with a specified tempo, Malice can lull extremely powerful lurking enemies to sleep, allowing her to sneak past them. Cymbals can be picked up to paralyze nearby enemies or wake up NPCs and prompt them to open up their doors.
Boss: Note Master
After all the Guardians are eradicated, the pathway to the Lost Lagoon opens up. This place looks like it were beat with time itself, looking ancient and relatively untouched. It is a very tough area to blast through, with multiple superstrong enemies popping up wherever Malice heads. The seas are of Death and will drag Malice into them if she wanders too deep within the whole mess. Malice should avoid the lurking Thing That Should Not Be if unprepared.
Lost Lagoon seems to be uncharted territory, unrecognized by any map apart from what the player's map already knows. Skies are pitch black, and so is the ground when Malice isn't close to it. A small spotlight surrounds Malice, allowing her to see the ground around her as well as some certain enemies. From what the player can make out, waters are stormy black and signs seem to warn of a "forbidden consequence".
Unlike other levels, the Lost Lagoon has nearly no major gimmicks and is almost straight-forward, with five very long paths able to be taken. Two of these lead back up into the Core Walkway, but the remaining lead towards the final level, which can only be entered with the defeat of the lurking boss. The waters of the lagoon will be traveled across surprisingly often though, and will damage Malice if she's been in the dark waters for too long.
Boss: The Silver Knight
The absolute final level, this plague-ridden abyss is an extremely tough stage to pass through, with the most nightmarish of foes roaming the level and ready to chop Malice up into little pieces. It makes great usage of Malice's abilities, forcing her to put everything she has to the test, requiring that the player knows every single little function that she's truly capable of. The level is categorized with a dark fog, heavy rain, and appropriately heavy music.
The Athenian Abyss defies the other levels' atmospheres, having a pitch-black sky yet very colorful-crystal-like ground. Rain shatters the ground and causes it to break up at times, and multiple lethal obstacles lay in store for Malice. Multiple writings can be seen emblazoned upon walls, depicting the Athenian plague and everything that Fandraxono stands against. Unlike the other territories, the abyss is a fairly straight-forward level.
Obstacles from all the other territories are thrown out into this level, making this mix a pain to fight through. Falling into a bottomless pit in a themed section will direct Malice towards that specific territory -- but seal her off from the abyss, requiring her to walk through the Lost Lagoon again! One of its few new gimmicks is a stopwatch, which stops time temporary so that Malice can cross over crystal platforms before rain shatters them apart.
Through the Never features twelve boss battles, with one found in every territory in the game barring the Never Docks. The final level in particular features two boss battles. Eight of these boss battles, particularly the ones located in the official subareas connected to the Core Walkway, are acknowledged as Guardians and can be fought in any order. Each can be defeated with Malice's default attacks, but certain magic and techniques can help whittle down the health of bosses faster.
- Corpse Lord is the Guardian of Vanish Valley, and presents a tricky challenge. He can vanish into the ground and hide himself away from Malice before bursting up again, tossing tombstones to attack the player. The Corpse Lord can teleport from side to side of the arena and summon waves of fire, or stamp his foot into the ground to bring zombies to life, forcing them to attack Malice. He can also summon a shooting star, which he'll toss towards the direction of the player. If the star is jumped over, it will go around and try to attack her again. This is the Corpse Lord's weak point -- if Malice attacks the shooting star, it will be reflected and hit the boss if the timing is right. Bloodroot Potions are very helpful in whittling down the boss as is the Inoendio spell.
- Sludgopus is the Guardian of Bleach Beach, having a cruel strategy. This octopus-like monster whips out its tentacles in hopes of catching Malice and bringing her down to it, eating her up! Malice must whip at the tentacles and make careful use of Immobulus if possible to freeze the tentacles in place so that they don't bring down the player to their impending doom. In addition to the tentacles, the player must watch out for the fountains of sludge that the boss can spew out, as they can do a load of damage to her pretty quickly. To damage the boss, one must wait for the Sludgopus to spit out a giant ink ball, then slam it back into its face. Inoendio can help at burning up the beast's face, stunning it and stopping its attacks.
- Bonehead Max is the Guardian of Skeleton Stream, presenting a tough battle. He is a war general and can summon several skeletons to life in order to aid him in his battle against Malice. The player should watch the way he flicks his bony hand when his minions are out -- they indicate where the skeletons will go in order to attack Malice. Max can also breathe blue flames, which can burn up Malice and temporarily stop her from using magic abilities. The Duro spell, which is found before the boss fight, can be used to turn Max to stone, as he is otherwise invincible. When transformed, the player must damage him as quick as possible to wither down his body before he assumes his normal form. Once he has taken enough, Max crumbles.
- Wind Master is the Guardian of Frosty Fortress, hosting an unfair advantage. She swiftly moves the winds of the world in her favor, trying to push Malice off the edge of the platform towards her doom, tossing needles towards her in hopes of succeeding. When not using wind, she will take her sword and slash very quickly at Malice, sending flames from the tip of the sword. The Wind Master only takes damage after absorbing the Weakness potion, so if the player doesn't have one, they need to put pressure on the boss by battling them with swift and accurate movements, quick enough to push them off the edge of the fortress roof to their own doom. If the potion is used, any attack can be used to damage the boss.
- Iron Man is the Guardian of Midnight Mountain, being tough as steel in combat. He stands in the background of the stage and is presented as a towering cyborg, with two enormous hands that can be used to crush Malice. She must swiftly move around and dodge them, avoiding the lasers that his two eyes can sprout out to attack her. With a stomp of the Iron Man's leg, he can summon enemies down onto the battlefield as harmful rain. Malice must climb the hands after avoiding their attacks and do great slaps to Iron Man's face, or use Augamenti to liquify the hands and legs of the beast, rendering him defeated after enough use of the spell. When close to being defeated, he can split the platform so that there's a bottomless pit in the center.
- Adrenaline Machine is the Guardian of Pyromanic Pipeworks, being mean and dangerous. It sits on the right of the battlefield and uses a multitude of fiery attacks to hit Malice, from flamethrowers to balls of flames. It can also charge up a fiery laser, which spreads out over the entire battlefield after thirty seconds of charging. Malice must avoid the fiery attacks and lash out at the three generators located around the machine to shut it down. The Augamenti spell is very helpful here, it can put out the fires and do excessive damage to the machine. If it is shut down this way though, the player must prepare to do a very well thought-out escape to another territory!
- Motorface is the Guardian of High-Sky Hotel, and is a pretty wild enemy. His hog-like mask's tusks shatter through just about anything thrown at him, so Malice must wait for an opening. He will charge around the battlefield and smash his fists through the ground to create gaps that Malice can fall through to her doom, and paralyze her with a powerful ram from his body. Malice must jump over his charges and strike him from behind to deal damage, or use Evanesco to make the mask vanish, allowing for free hits to his face without fear. If his mask is taken off, he will jump around the battlefield in hopes of crushing the player, but a good hit to his stomach will flip him over and leave him open to damage.
- Note Master is the Guardian of Thrash Town, and is a manipulative cheater. Malice battles her on a thin white platform, which contains some more under it. Big "notes" will run across these platforms as the Note Master resides in the background, playing music to manipulate enemies into doing his bidding. Black notes explode on contact with Malice and can damage her, red notes burn her, yellow notes, paralyze her, purple notes poison her, and white notes should be attacked. If white notes are attacked, the Note Master will take damage, and she will speed up the gameplay. The player must keep battling enemies and hitting the white notes until the music gets to insane speeds. Once a rainbow note is hit, Note Master falls to her death.
- Fandraxono can be encountered after all the Guardians are defeated. Corrupted by the Athenian plague, he will descend on the Core Walkway and attack Malice with brutal slashes, breathing out bugs that will drain out her life. He can use his dark hands to pick up the player, smashing them into the ground afterwards. He is quite unstable for a boss and as such he has a lot of weak points, but direct contact will result in Malice taking plenty of damage, so magical spells like Inoendio should be used against him instead. If Fandraxono forms a stone obstacle, Avifors can be used to turn them into violent birds that strike the God for damage. After enough damage, Fandraxono returns to normal and teleports away.
- The Silver Knight is encountered in the Lost Lagoon, and has a really challenging fight. She will rush around the battlefield and strike with her lance to damage Malice, also breathing out poisonous sludge at Malice in order to intoxicate her. The Silver Knight can also form bolts of electricity that shoot up from the ground in hopes of catching the player off guard. She is invincible to all of Malice's moves with her armor up, so the player must wait until she attacks, where her armor will temporarily be down. Striking the Silver Knight immediately as she actively does an attack will damage her and force her down, where Malice can beat her up. Following enough hits, the Silver Knight explodes and the Athenian Abyss opens.
- Athena is the semi-final boss in the game, being a vessel for the plague. She will spread out viruses which can easily eat away at Malice's health and use her scorpion tail as a ranged weapon to attack Malice from every corner of the arena. She is initially invincible, but by dodging her attacks for a full two minutes, she will show her inner emotions, which shut down her invincibility. Malice must use all of the magic she can against Athena, as the next battle won't really use them as much. Using the Queen potion will be enough to overcome the extremely tough defenses of Athena. Alternatively, tossing out three Bloodroot potions towards Athena will poison her, allowing for an easier defeat.
- The Echeno is the final boss, and will immediately chase Malice upon defeat. It will hunt her down through the abyss and then through the lagoon and core walkway. As Malice runs, she must jump over and duck under hazards and make use of her magic spells to make it through the various puzzles that stand in her way. If the Echeno gets too close, it will eat her up and make the player lose a life, forcing them to restart from the beginning of this "race". At last, when the Never Docks are reached, Malice must duck away from the Echeno carefully -- not too fast, not too slow. When he reaches the tip of the dock, the Echeno will be attacked and sent far away by Fandraxono, therefore ending the game.
- Through the Never is the first game from either TimeStrike or scorpistar⭐ to feature a character that was once (at a point) scrapped. It is also the first to feature an old character that doesn't appear to be a reboot of sorts, unlike the likes of BowieQuest and Crimson the Roserade.
- Malice was originally featured as a character in scrapped fiction "Moonbath", where she shared the role as protagonist with General Syande. This fiction was scrapped, but both characters were kept. As a nod to the fiction, Syande has a small role in this game.
- As with Fade to Black, The Unforgiven, and Trapped Under Ice, the game shares its name with a Metallica song, proving this to be a recurring trend across TimeStrike's projects.
- This is the second project to be named after something from the Metallica album, following The Unforgiven.
- As far as the creator is aware, this is the first project to utilize the concept of being able to collect albums/vinyls/whatever as alternative tracks for a game.