Astral Chain Review

By Michelle Lynn Tackett

What a great year it’s been for the Nintendo Switch. Link’s Awakening, Fire Emblem and Mario Maker 2 highlight some incredible games, but what about new IPs? That’s where Astral Chain comes in. Like a blaze of fire burning through the sky, it delivers a streak of action and excitement.

Story
Humanity is being invaded by interdenominational creatures who threaten to wipe them out. Only an elite strike force called Neuron can stop them. You play as one of the twins who try to take down the demons. Your character has to stop Jana Anderson, who serves as the main villain in the game. The story has a Bladerunner flair to it. I won’t give away too much. This story needs to be experienced. It is a good story.

Graphics
This game is gorgeous. The blue hues and the art style are amazing. The reflections and lighting bring the world to life. It’s like watching a stylized anime on your Nintendo Switch. The details are amazing from the sparks from the fire to the facial animations of the characters. Everything is lovingly detailed, making the world feel alive. You’ll feel like you’re living in this world.

Combat
This is where Platinum Games shine. The combat sounds complicated on paper, but you’ll figure it out with some practice. You control your character and call your legion out when you need them. The legion attacks by itself, but you can do certain attacks by button presses, or moving the control stick. This gives the game a fresh feel. It does take a while to get the hang of but flows like butter when you get the hang of it. The combat never feels overwhelming. It follows the old easy to learn, but hard to master philosophy that works so well for games like Bayonetta.

Sci-Fi PI
One of my favorite aspects of Astral Chain is the detective work. The Iris helps you see things to help you solve cases. Some cases are simple, while others take a while to complete. There are so many cases to solve, so it will take some time to solve them. Some think they slow down the flow of the game, but I find them refreshing. Solving cases will help your character get new clothing and upgrades.

Music
One of the best soundtracks ever for a video game. The thumping techno, glaring punk rock and soaring rock will stick with you for a long time.

Challenge
This is a challenging game, especially when you turn up the difficulty. There is a casual mode for noobs, but you can take the wheels off for experienced players. The boss fights are epic. The final boss is one of the best boss fights I’ve ever experienced. It takes skill to beat this game, but when you do, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment.

Flaws
The camera is distracting at times. When you’re in a firefight, the camera will get too close or go behind a wall and get stuck. This can be annoying, but it isn’t a deal-breaker. Some of the plot twists were predictable, and some of the moves will take lots of practice to get down. That may turn some newer players off.

Verdict
Astral Chain is one of the best action games you’ll ever play. The gorgeous visuals, engaging plot, colorful character, and rich combat will keep you coming back long after the single-player campaign is over. If you own a Nintendo Switch, get it. If you don’t own a Switch, get one and get this masterwork of an action game from one of the best developers in the industry.

Grade: 4 Stars! Buckle up! You’re in for a wild ride!

Photo Courtesy of: https://xboxplay.games/news/astral-chain-how-to-beat-enceladus-tips-and-tricks-3037

Nintendo Games Make Me Happy: Why I Love Nintendo

There are lots of things I love about entertainment, but Nintendo games are the tops. Nothing gets me excited like a Nintendo game. From Mario, Zelda, Pokemon, to Fire Emblem, Yoshi and Kirby. Nintendo games have given me thousands of hours of entertainment. They’ve helped me deal with bullying and going homeless. I am gonna tell everyone why I love Nintendo games so much, and why video games bring joy to the world, not suffering.

BTW, this article is not to put down Sony or Microsoft. They make games that make people happy as well. My blog is about why Nintendo games make me happy.

The Characters
I love the character, Mario, Link, Yoshi, Kirby, Eevee, Pikachu, Samus, Shulk, Rex, Donkey Kong, Dixie Kong, etc. I could keep going. I love the colors, most Nintendo games are colorful. Bright colors help with my depression and anxiety. I feel at ease when I play. 2 of my favorite games are Pokemon Let’s Go and Yoshi’s Crafted World. I want to live in these worlds and have fun. Mario is like a regular person (except for the growing big from mushrooms and other magical powers), Link is often an orphan who grows up to have special powers. Samus lost her parents at a young age and was raised by the Chozo people. I think this helps add to the appeal of Nintendo characters. They’re relatable. They aren’t big muscle-bound brutes who crush things with their hands, (they do that with the help of special items ok)? Nintendo characters are us, the player and we connect with them. Although Link doesn’t speak, we get to be Link. We are him! We get to be a real hero who saves the day. What can be more fun than that?

The Worlds
The Mushroom Kingdom and Hyrule are two of the best worlds in any entertainment form. Hyrule even has mythology full of cultures and different technologies. Other Nintendo franchises follow this, like Fire Emblem, Metroid, Kirby, and Yoshi. Star Fox has great mythology as well. The Lylat System, with all of the cool creatures and Talking animals who fly ships! You can’t get that anywhere else.

Tradition
Nintendo has been around since the 80s, so it is easy to form an attachment to their games. Zelda, Mario, and Metroid have been around since the middle of the 80s. Star Fox, F-Zero, and Yoshi have been around since the 90s. I am glad Nintendo is making more new IPs, but I would be sad to not see new games from Mario, Zelda or Metroid. I am glad Nintendo respects their tradition.

They Lift My Spirits
When I was homeless, I went through some dark times and had dark thoughts. My 3DS kept me company and would keep me from thinking bad thoughts I would have so much fun playing Pokemon Y, Zelda Link Between Worlds or Fire Emblem Awakening. People may not understand, but Nintendo games have given me so much comfort and made me feel safe when I was dealing with a lot of adversity. It broke my heart when I had to sell my 3DS and Wii U just to get some food. I know I had to do it, but I was really in a sad place. I had nothing to pick my spirits. I promised myself I would not do that again, and I haven’t. Nothing makes me happier than going to a store and buying a Nintendo game.

Final Thoughts
Nintendo games are so much fun, I still play older Nintendo games. I have played Super Metroid, Super Mario World, Link to the Past, Metroid Prime, OoT, and Mario Galaxy so much, I have them memorized. Go try a Nintendo game, you may find your next favorite game.

Photo Courtesy of: https://www.gamespot.com/forums/system-wars-314159282/what-is-nintendos-worst-console-poll-29379612/

Astral Chain Sales and Critic Predictions

Nintendo is on a roll with Mario Maker 2, MUA 3 and FETH being big hits. In 19 days, add another hit to that list. Astral Chain comes out August 30th and it could be a huge new IP for Nintendo. Here are my predictions for it’s sales and critical reception. Let’s go!

Critic predictions

Platinum Games usually get great reviews. Especially Nier Automata and Bayonetta 2. I can easily see Astrail Chain in the 88-92 territory with critics raving about the combat, the art style, the depth, characters and the scope. Some may criticize the game for the story, and some may not like the hub which looks to be complex. This will be a big critic darling.

Sales

Sadly, Platinum games don’t sell that great. Although, Nier Automata sold 3.8 million. Astral Chain could turn out to be their biggest hit. I could see Astral Chain hitting 4-5 million lifetime sales. I could see this selling 700-900k it’s first week and 2.4 million by the end of the year. America and Japan will be the 2 biggest markets, with Europe being 3rd. This could be a huge new IP for Nintendo and that’s great. Plus, it will give Platinum another big hit after Nier, sood news all around.

Platinum Games deserves all this success and I hope Astral Chain does do what I predict. Don’t sleep on this game Nintendo fans, giving Nintendo new IPs will help then grow and make more games like this. On August 30th, go out and get this game!

Link: https://www.platinumgames.com/games/astral-chain

https://www.google.com/amp/s/wccftech.com/astral-chain-gameplay-intricate-combo/amp/

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.gamespot.com/amp-articles/astral-chain-hands-on-preview-two-characters-make-/1100-6468702/

Photo courtesy of: https://www.google.com/amp/s/mynintendonews.com/2019/07/15/five-minutes-of-astral-chain-direct-feed-gameplay/amp/