NieR: Automata

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NieR: Automata

Postby Black Hat » Sat Sep 16, 2017 11:10 am

Motto: "Destroy, Devour, Desolate!"
Weapon: Chomping Rotor Blades
(Note: Any discussion about major story elements should be spoilered due to the unique nature of the game)

So I recently bought and have been religiously playing Yoko Taro's NieR: Automata, a collab between Platinum games and Square Enix. I haven't gotten THAT far in yet (I haven't even beaten it once, let alone the countless times you need to in order to get all the endings) but hooooooooly crap this game is incredible.

The story (from what I've seen of it thus far) is superbly written. I'm not going to talk too much about it as spoiling it would be a travesty, but I'll just say that the ending of the TUTORIAL LEVEL concludes with an emotional sucker punch. And it only gets more grim from there.

Aesthetically it's perfect. The way the machines are fashioned after wind-up tin toys is adorable, and the androids are elegant yet sinister with their black and white garb and blindfolds. The environments are gorgeous too, with possibly one of the most beautiful post-apocalyptic landscapes ever crafted in a videogame. All this rendered with spectacular graphics and animations.

The music is absolutely spectacular, almost operatic in its splendour. The instrumentals are all expertly orchaestrated and the vocals (done in a made-up language) are downright haunting.

The gameplay is...orgasmically good. Seriously, I adore Platinum anyway but this is without a doubt their finest game ever. It's predominantly a hack-and-slash, but with RPG elements and space-shooter segments. Normally I hate games that can't decide what they want to be, but this? This is perfect. Between the gameplay constantly switching style and the story delivering gutpunch after gutpunch, you are literally never bored.

In spite of lacking in gore or gential-faced monsters or jumpscares or other cliches of "scary" games, the game is deeply unsettling (and I mean that in the best way possible). It starts out pedestrian enough, but when the enemies start screaming at you (and in one case singing opera) it gets pretty chilling.

Finally, it's the only game I know of that allows you to fight a bucket-wheel excavator with a katana and win. That alone makes it absolute top-tier.

Literally the only downside is the mediocre English voice acting, but you can play it in Japanese with subtitles anyway, so even that doesn't really matter.

So in short: I've barely even gotten into the meat of this game and I'm already completely blown away. I normally hate it when people start comparing videogames to art (mainly as they're usually pretentious in the extreme) but this? This is art, without a doubt.

This game belongs in your collection. Go play it. Now.
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Posted: Monday, November 13th, 2017