+Interesting feature option
-Stale and repetitive music
-No real direction
-Lack of any back-story
-Over simplified enemies
For fans of Metroidvania style games, Exile’s End has some outstanding environmental graphics for a 2D platformer. The very approach of being a 2D platformer makes you feel as if your playing a retro title. In fact, Exile’s End has one of the most interesting features I’ve seen for the genre it derives from. This happens to be the option to make the game look as if it is being played on an old school tube television.
The story for Exile’s End starts a bit chaotic and definitely a survival feel. Unfortunately, you get a little info on your actually character. But only enough to make you ask more questions and never get answers. As for the story of the game itself it tends to progress smoothly. With that being said that doesn’t mean its easy to progress or even fun. Just like old Metroid and Castlevania games, Exile’s End doesn’t always tell you where to go and what to do. The title also doesn’t even give you a clear sense of direction most of the time. There are pints in the game even early on where after several hours of running around you may still not now what your supposed to do to progress the game. Along with this if for some reason you mess up somewhere even if your far into the game you cannot backtrack at all. This is due to the fact that the game has no true checkpoint/save point system.
How it works is if you enter a room no matter what ,the game will auto-save you at the entrance to that room with everything that is currently going on. So if you finish killing an enemy, but you only lived with one point of health and accidental go to next room, you have that single hit point whenever you reload at that checkpoint. The worst thing about this is the fact that the only way to fix it is you having to start a brand new game. For those in the early game, it may not be such a problem but mid and late game it can cause a real issue for some and even make others not want to play anymore.
The mechanics of game play seem very reminisces of classics but are still a bit lackluster. Due to getting falling damage at the beginning of the game, you are pushed to explore your environments extremely carefully. This entails having to move the camera up and down to look around. However, moving the screen around is terribly slow and takes away from the platforming.
The environmental dangers such as floor and ceiling spikes can feel terribly cheap as you just can’t be bothered to wait for your screen to move up or down to see them so you can avoid them. Another pat of this is the fact that for at least some time in the beginning of the game all you get is a rock as your weapon. This can and usually does cause quite an issue when facing enemies early on. Then later when you unlock bombs, you’re limited to three, and unlike other weapons you obtain these bombs happen to be hot-keyed to a single button. This can cause a major issue due to the fact that bombs can be used accidentally while in combat. Since they are required for certain parts of the game you’ll find yourself farming to restock your equipment if you run out.
One mechanic that seems to overall well done yet over simplified would have to be the enemies for Exile’s End. They are separated into 2 types, ground and aerial units. The issue here lies in the fact that depending on which your facing it doesn’t matter the actually enemies it is they essentially do the same thing based on which type they are. Aerials fly around and dive every so often and then rinse and repeat.
Exile’s End – PC, PlayStation 4 (Reviewed), PlayStation Vita
Developer: Magnetic Realms
Publisher: Marvelous USA
Release Date: Now Available
Not the hardest to deal with and easy to get pattern for most part. Now the ground enemies have a tiny variation but nothing to significant. You have your melee and your melee/range units. The only difference is the fact that the melee/ranged units will fire some kinda range projectile at you every few seconds or so. So definitely could have been more done just so simplified for combat.
The biggest issue with Exile’s End is going to be the music for the game. Every zone or section of the game has its own music theme or as many would refer to it BGM like in the old days. But, each one only has a handful of sounds that make up the songs. This is a major issue cause after several minutes it gets very old and severely repetitive. This can cause you to want to play with the music turned off.
Exile’s End all in all isn’t the best Metroidvania game out there and not necessarily the worst to come from the genre.
Our review is based on a copy provided to us by the games publisher. For information about our ethics policy please click here.
Final Score: 3 out of 10
About the Writer:
Chris Adee is one of B.A.T.G.R.’s newest writers who seems to love three things. Sleep, games, and MOBA’s when he’s not goofing around on Warframe and SMITE. He also likes games. A lot. Oh and anime. Did we mention anime?