Sker Ritual Official Screenshot

Every Sker Ritual Map Ranked Worst to Best

Like the hordes of Quiet Ones in the various Sker Ritual maps, this indie game seems to be taking over the world. Fans of Call of Duty Zombies have found a new home in this round-based co-op shooter, and one of the reasons for its success is undoubtedly the variety of maps. With four at launch, here’s every Sker Ritual map ranked from worst to best.

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Sewers of the Dead

Sker Ritual Sewers of the Dead The Stranger
Screenshot by The Escapist

It pains me to start off negatively, but Sewers of the Dead is the one Sker Ritual map I actually dislike. My issues with the level start in the very first room. Upon first impression, it’s just a bit ugly. The fleshy red everywhere meshes well with the game’s art style, and the majority of the map has this aesthetic.

Sewers of the Dead tries to be innovative with progression but falls flat. Much of the map is covered in tendrils that must be destroyed to progress. You have to shoot clusters of eggs close by to get them to disappear. It’s certainly an interesting mechanic, but it slows down the pace of gameplay quite a bit when you have to stop what you’re doing to search for and shoot at them. This gets a bit less tedious if you get this map’s special weapon, The Plague.

The Plague also allows you to destroy certain clusters you can’t without it. This opens up portions of the map to create new routes and, in some cases, is needed to open certain rooms entirely. Again, I see the vision and nearly appreciate the novelty. That being said, this removes a lot of player choice. Essentially, requiring players to have a certain weapon – when you can only carry two – limits the player’s freedom, which makes Sker Ritual so special.

When you exit the Sewers, the above-ground area isn’t much better. It consists of really cramped woods and an even tighter train car. While the variety the train adds is nice, the area is too tight to be viable. With Sker Ritual’s low FOV relative to other shooters, it can be really disorienting to navigate. Unfortunately, Sewers of the Dead’s guided Easter Egg Quest doesn’t redeem this map much either. Much of its objectives take away from the action. While co-op players might enjoy the variety, trying to complete these tasks with enemies on my tail as a solo player is just frustrating.

Deadly Lover’s Fortress

Sker Ritual Deadly Lover's Fortress Exterior
Screenshot by The Escapist

Deadly Lover’s Fortress is a big jump in quality compared to Sewers of the Dead. This map is set in and around a castle in the dead of winter. The aesthetic of this map is fantastic. It has a vibe inspired by the Dark Fantasy genre that I really love. This map really opens things up and lets you explore at your own pace. There are many options for how and when you progress through the map.

The gates are guarded by Balor, a giant brute with fire raging within him. He spawns once when you open the gate to the castle and another time when you destroy the first generator. This mini-boss fight is a fun challenge without being too difficult. You’re handsomely rewarded with £2500 each time you defeat him. You can do this twice by the end of Round 1. Ending the first wave with £5000 gives players many options for how they want to progress through the map. If all they want to do is survive, they won’t have to progress far.

However, diving deeper into Deadly Lover’s Fortress reveals plenty of secrets. The first time I played this map, I was shocked at how it just kept going. There is so much to explore within the Fortress, especially once you get the Teleporter turned on. The guided Easter Egg Quest on this map is just fantastic, too. Players are shown the depths of the Fortress and can unlock Elizabeth’s main chamber by spawning and defeating giant clones of the mini-bosses from previous maps. Each fight is extremely fun. Once they’re all killed, offering their heads unlocks the gate to the quest’s final boss, Elizabeth herself. Not to mention, players will find a unique Sword weapon throughout the Quest. It can be upgraded to have elemental abilities worthy of the Dark Fantasy genre that inspires this map.

The Ashes of Sker Hotel

Sker Ritual, The Ashes of Sker Hotel Starting Room
Screenshot by The Escapist

The Ashes of Sker Hotel is the purest survival map Sker Ritual has to offer. It is small and very close-quarters. All the basics you need to survive, such as perks and weapons, are readily available. The Laughing Policeman’s Super Charger, used to upgrade weapons, is just one door away from the spawn room.

As you progress through the map, things get hectic. Developer Wales Interactive seems to have opted for a one-to-one scale for the corridors of this map. The labyrinthian hallways housing kitchens, guest rooms, and more are incredibly cramped. As such, this map has the truest survival-horror feel of any in Sker Ritual.

A big part of that horror comes from the aura and atmosphere this map has to offer. The art department really went off on this one. The turn-of-the-century decor in this abandoned hotel is dripping with atmosphere. There’s just something so creepy about this formerly fancy place. This is also the only map to be comprised almost exclusively of the interior, so it truly feels like you can never escape. There is a Teleporter that can take you to other appropriately abandoned places. I love the eerie library and the theater with a dilapidated Rat Animatronic on the stage.

The biggest scares come every five rounds or so. In these intervals, a special wave spawns in consisting of the gentlemanly-dressed mini boss Isaac, and sprinting, shrieking, electric undead. What really makes this round horrifying is that all the lights in the map go out for the duration of it. You are in complete darkness, save for your flashlight and the glowing blues of the arcs of electricity coming off of enemies’ bodies.

Cursed Lands Of Lavernock

Sker Ritual, Cursed Lands of Lavernock Spawn Room and Church.
Screenshot by The Escapist

There’s an old saying that you can’t beat the original. Such is certainly true of Sker Ritual’s first map, the Cursed Lands of Lavernock. For a time the only level available in early access, it is this map which made this game so popular in the first place. Cursed Lands of Lavernock has everything you need in a survival horror level.

The map spawns you in a creepy old church, where it becomes apparent some cultish behavior has been taking place. Then, the map opens up, and you progress into a small village with creaky cabins that remind me of my favorite summer camp slashers.

Progressing even deeper, there is a sprawling underground wing that feels like it just never ends. There are classy libraries and offices, morgues, and even a main chamber that seems to tease the arrival of some Eldritch horror beast. It is like a greatest hits album of survival horror locales, yet they all flow together shockingly well.

The guided Easter Egg quest for this map is also a joy, and it is perfect for getting players into the world of Sker Ritual. As I uncover this map, I keep finding collectibles with morsels of lore and excellent environmental storytelling that make me want to keep going further. The objectives in the quest are fun and compelling, adding to the act of fighting the hordes rather than detracting from it. It is for all these reasons that Cursed Lands of Lavernock is the best map in Sker Ritual.

Sker Ritual is available now on PC, PlayStation, and Xbox.


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Author
Haiden Lovely
Haiden is a Contributor at The Escapist who has been writing about games since 2023. They love a good live-service shooter, especially Call of Duty: Zombies and have a complicated relationship with Madden Ultimate Team. Haiden brings experience in writing about games and entertainment, video production and podcast hosting from Strangely Awesome Games.