Hello friends! With you AppTime Media and this is an early review of Elex II, a role-playing game for large platforms. I played it on PC and now I hasten to share my opinion. I’ll note right away that I didn’t play the first part, but from the RPG I really only read the first Fable, well, Skyrim, otherwise Todd Howard will get angry.
Let’s start with the introduction – ELEX II was made by the Piranha Bytes studio, familiar to the old-timers of the genre from such series as Gothic and Risen. At one time, I tried to pass them, but because of the management and lack of nostalgia, I did not go far, although the freedom of choice and the feeling of doom struck me. By the way, these and other features can be traced in ELEX II, but first things first.
Piranha Bytes made sure that even those who are not familiar with the first ELEX get into the story. Therefore, we are met by a video insert with excellent Russian voice acting. If I’m not mistaken, then Jax – the protagonist of ELEX – was voiced by Denis Bespaly, who gave the voice to Aiden Pearce from Watch Dogs. If without spoilers, then people are forgetful, but a danger is approaching that will turn everything upside down.
The story in ELEX II progresses through dialogues, and this is where the problem begins – facial animations and general character movements are clearly not taken from the actors using a mocap. Because of this, you often catch artificial facial expressions, and sometimes even strange ones; It’s like it’s 2017 and BioWare just released Mass Effect: Andromeda. There are no complaints about the voice actors – the voices are familiar and breathe life into the characters.
Jax is placed in a hallway location that has many supply spots hidden in it. In general, in ELEX II you constantly have to look for hidden places and get off the main road. But where is the main road? Once I decided to climb the sheer cliffs, like in Skyrim, hoping break the game or find an uber cannon, but got a story cutscene instead. After that, I could not get back – there were dangerous monsters waiting for me, killing with the first blow. And so that you understand the bitterness of my situation, I left behind a large location, probably packed to capacity with supplies.
On the one hand, this is bad for a modern gamer, but old-timers and connoisseurs should come in – ELEX II does not hold the player by the hand, and there is where to roam in the open world. Piranha Bytes even introduced non-linearity, which collapses after the first two tasks. Real life example – Jax walks up to his wife and nicely talking to her about the baby. After that, he comes back a little and asks the priest a question: “Where is my child?”. He replies: “Ask your wife.” Cap, I just came from her; it’s a pity that Jax did not react in any way, it at least brightened up the situation.
But you can also understand the developers, since after almost every phrase another quest is added to the magazine, their eyes run wide. Heard on the radio about the upcoming concert? You should visit it. Just do not forget about the impending threat, although there is no timer in ELEX II, and time “stops” between quests.
It is strange and viscous, which causes Jax to perform an action with a slight but noticeable delay. Also, if you have several items in front of you, you can’t pick up all of them, so be kind – click mouse 6 timesto collect 6 arrows. But if you climb into the chest, then there is a button “Pick up everything.” By the way, do not even waste the first master keys in vain, because until you learn the hacking skill, nothing will shine for you. But I’m getting ahead of myself, let’s get back to management.
Attacks in ELEX II can be divided into three types: melee, ranged, and magic. You can forget about the latter at the start, and you are unlikely to find a bow before the first settlement. Because of this, you have to hit the enemy with a rusty pipe, dodging frequent attacks. To some extent, you can “abuse” the system and force the enemy to crash into stones and walls. I dreamed of getting a bow, and when it happened, I was upset – you can shoot from cover once, after that the monster rushes at you and runs up close. If you decide to stand on a hill, then the enemy will begin to nervously run around and constantly tremble, which is why it will not work to hit him. And yes, arrows do not fall from the corpse.
Well, now let’s talk about what everyone loves role-playing games for – pumping and the ability to play a role. The system is quite easy, after a new level we scatter points by attributes, depending on the chosen path. The problem is that there aren’t enough of them for anything – I can’t pump a jetpack, because I don’t have enough intelligence and Elex, the blacksmith has only an anvil for sharpening a rusty pipe, and for a cooler bow, one more point in Strength and Dexterity is required . But for this, I have to pump more on quests, but the monsters absorb a lot of damage, that is, I need better equipment. See the vicious circle?
And do not think that I put the cart before the horse and specifically look for such moments. On the contrary, I want to explore the local world, find a hidden chest with cool materials in it, and become stronger thanks to the time spent on this. Instead, I’m constantly reminded that I’m not ready yet.
ELEX II is a game with a good story, great voice actors, but it feels empty. The open world pleases with rare waterfalls, mountains in the distance, but Jax himself spends most of his time in rocky valleys, where there is nothing to catch the eye. I wanted to give this project a chance, I wanted to love it, but it’s like a piece of stale bread – it cuts the gums and leaves a strange aftertaste.