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

Astral Chain is a GOTY Contender! My Early Impressions

I have been excited for Astral Chain since I first saw it. The style, combat and Platinum Games were enough for me! What else do you need? My expectations were high, so when I got my copy, I was nervous? Will it live up to the hype? Is it is as good as Bayonetta 2 and Nier? I couldn’t wait to play AC and give my impressions.

Combat

The combat is unique and fun. You have two characters to control, you and your legion. Thankfully, the control set up is simple. You use ZL to call your legion, and ZR is your attack button. Your legion attacks on its own while you use the control stick to do different moves (rotating your stick will help chain your enemies up, so you can attack without them counter-attacking). It does take a while to get used to, but once you do, it flows like water. There are lots of layers to the combat, but the game adds it bit by bit instead of pouring it on. This helps the player adjust to the complex moves in the game.

Graphics

Graphics don’t matter to me, but Astral Chain is a looker. Gorgeous colors, shinning textures, great details, and a solid 30fps will have your eyes exploding. The environments are incredible. I’ve never seen anything like them in a game before. The world is huge. It isn’t an open world, but open-ended. I am not a digital foundry, but this game shows what the Switch can do when the right developer gets ahold of it.

Music

One part of this game that doesn’t get enough praise is the music. Holy cow the music is incredible. This is one of the best soundtracks I’ve heard. Thumping techno, rebellious punk, and glaring rock will fill your ears with original sounds and beats. The opening cinematic plays out like an Anime with a wonderful track called Savior. I would buy the soundtrack if it was available.

Investigation

Some people may not like detective work, but I love it. Its a nice break from the action, and gives you a chance to use your IRIS which helps you solve cases and fight enemies. The cases you solve can be pretty simple, but they’re engaging and fun. Sometimes you have to chase down a civilian who broke the law. You never kill anyone, but you can use your legion to catch them and arrest them. This adds variety to the gameplay.

Final thoughts

I thought Fire Emblem Three Houses was game of the year, but along comes Astral Chain. This is one of the best action games I’ve ever played. It is my favorite Platinum Games game, even over Nier and Bayonetta 2. The variety, size, graphics, combat, gameplay, and music are mind-blowing. I cannot get over how good this game is. I will be back in 2 weeks with my final review. I am 15 hours in and I am not finished, so it is a big game, and I am having a blast. Get this game for the Switch. If you don’t own a Switch? What’s wrong with you? Get one, and get this game now!

Photo Courtesy of: http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2019/08/feature_from_astral_chain_to_zetman_the_story_of_masakazu_katsura

Astral Chain Reviews Are In! Another GOTY Contender for Nintendo Switch!

Here we go. Astral Chain has an 88 on Opencritic. This is on par with Fire Emblem 3 Houses and better than Control. Astral Chain comes out this Friday, so get ready for the excitement. This is gonna be a GOTY contender along with Fire Emblem for the Switch. The Nintendo Switch is killing it this year. What an amazing year for games for the Switch. Nier got similar scores and Nier got a lot of GOTY nominations and won some. I think the same thing will happen with Astral Chain. Astral Chain’s sales on Amazon have shot up, so it seems like the reviews have done their job. Astral Chain comes out this Friday, be ready for one of the best games of the year.

Link: https://opencritic.com/game/7870/astral-chain

Link: https://www.amazon.com/best-sellers-video-games/zgbs/videogames

Photo Courtesy of: https://www.gamespot.com/astral-chain/

Astrail Chain First Review: It’s A Hit!

Famitsu Magazine awarded Astral Chain a 37/40 in their magazine. This is exactly what Fire Emblem got. This is a great start to a lot more 9s and 10s I think will becoming it’s way. Any game where you can play with a kitty cat on your head is gotta be a GOTY contender! Good going Platinum Games!

Link: https://mynintendonews.com/2019/08/21/japan-famitsu-awards-astral-chain-37-40/

Photo Courtesy of: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.polygon.com/platform/amp/e3/2019/6/11/18661291/astral-chain-release-date-nintendo-switch-trailer-platinumgames-e3-2019

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/

Platinum Games: Astral Chain Is Going to be Special

According to an interview with Twinfinite, Platinum games is making a lot of games, with a lot of surprises. The one game they’re really happy to talk about is Astral Chain.

The director of Nier Automata is making Astral Chain with a group of young developers. They say they’re gonna do some new gameplay ideas and try to make Astral Chain a special game. Don’t sleep on Astral Chain, this could be the sleeper mega-hit of the year.

Link: https://twinfinite.net/2019/05/platinumgames-astral-chain/

Photo Courtesy of: https://nintendoeverything.com/new-astral-chain-art/

Favorite Video Game Companies: Top 10

Picks By Michelle Lynn Tackett & Shawn Tackett

Michelle

It is not hard for me to think of my top 10 favorite video game companies, (this includes the devs and publishers, 1st, 2nd or 3rd party). This list is based on how much we love the companies games, and how many games are in our collection. So, here we go.

10: Bethesda, I love Bethesda games. Skyrim and Doom 2016 are my favorite Bethesda games, but I also love Fallout 4. My favorite Bethesda game is Skyrim.

9: Sega, Ah, one of the old timers. Sega has revolutionized gaming a lot of times and created some of the best games ever for a console. If I had to pick one favorite game, it would be Sonic Mania Plus. What a love letter for Sonic the Hedgehog fans.

8: Namco Bandai, I love their fighting games so much. Soul Calibur, Tekken and Dragon Ball are all legendary. I also love the Dark Soul series, but nothing gets me excited like a Namco/Bandai fighting game. My favorite Namco/Bandai game is Tales of Vesperia.

7: Capcom, Capcom makes some of my favorite games of all time, from Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate, Mega Man, Street Fighter and Resident Evil. They have some of the best franchises of all-time and make quality games on a regular basis. My favorite Capcom game of all time is Mega Man 11.

6: Square/Enix, SE is one of the best when it comes to JRPGs, games like Final Fantasy and Chrono Trigger have kept SE in business for decades. My favorite SE game of all time is Octopath Travler.

5: Intelligent Systems, One of the best RPG makers of all-time. Paper Mario and Fire Emblem have some of the best RPG entries of all time. Intelligent Systems live up to their name. They know how to make quality games. My favorite Intelligent systems game of all time is Fire Emblem Awakening.

4: Platinum Games, One of the best when it comes to action games. Platinum have made classics like Madworld, Viewtiful Joe, Bayonetta and Nier. Their upcoming Nintendo Switch game called Astral Chain looks amazing. Favorite Platinum Game, Bayonetta 2.

3: Retro Studios, They have only made 6 games, but wowzers! What games they are. They have done 3 Metroid Prime games, 2 DKC games, and Mario Kart 7 is a triumph of level design. Metroid Prime destroyed GTA for game of the year in 2002. My favorite Retro Studios game is Metroid Prime.

2: Monolith Studios. the most talented people from Square left in 1999 and formed this company. They make some of the best games on the market. They have helped with BOTW, Splatoon 1 and 2, and of course, the Xenoblade series. My favorite game of Monolith Studios is Xenoblade Chronicles 2.

1: Nintendo EAD, was there ever any doubt? Masters of design and philosophy of how games should be made. No company makes better games than Nintendo. From Mario, to Pokemon, Zelda, Splatoon, Metroid and others. Nintendo is above the rest when it comes to excellent games. My favorite Nintendo game, too many to count!

Shawn

10: Panic Button, if you need a great Switch port, go to Panic Button! They do incredible Switch ports pushing the console, showing what it can do. Favorite game, Doom 2016.

9: Square/Enix, I love their colorful JRPGs and SE has tons of them! Dragon Quest Builders is my favorite game.

8: Limited Run Games, they bring out lots of indie darling. Favorite game, Golf Story.

7: Nicalis a company not afraid to take chances with creative and different games. Favorite game, the Binding of Isaac.

6: Namco/Bandai they have so many good fighting, action, rpg and classic games. Favorite games, Namco Museum, Smash Ultimate and Tales of Vesperia.

5: Retro Studios, one of the best in the industry, creating great games that revolutionize genres. Favorite game, DKCTF

4: Monolith Soft, one of the best studios around. So much talent and experience. Favorite game, Xenoblade Chronicles 2.

3: Good Feel, they make Yoshi games, do I need to say anything else? Favorite game, Yoshi’s Crafted World.

Platinum Games, they are so creative and imaginative. They make some of the best games you’ll ever play. Favorite game, Bayonetta 2.

1: Nintendo EAD, from Koizumi, to Miyamoto, no one has the talent that ?Nintendo does. They’re the best around. Favorite game, Mario Odyssey and Mario Maker 2.

Who are your favorite video game companies?

Photo Courtesy of: https://sporteology.net/top-10-biggest-video-game-companies/

Platinum Games and Nintendo Make A Great Team!

Nintendo Life did an article talkingvto Platinum games and why they love working with Nintendo. I will link the article below, but some members of Platinum said it had to do with how much Nintendo loves creators and how much freedom they give them.

This is great news for Nintendo fans. Platinum Games fills a big void in Nintendo’s line up with exclusive hardcore action games like Bayonetta and the upcoming blockbuster Astral Chain.

If you love action games, try a game made by Platinum. Bayo 1 and 2 are on the Switch. Nier Automata is on PS4, XBO and PC. Those are some of the best games on the market. You won’t regret buying any of these games.

Photo Courtesy of: https://www.thetanooki.com/2015/06/16/platinum-games-revealed-to-be-working-with-nintendo-on-star-fox-zero/

Link: http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2019/05/platinumgames_studio_head_talks_about_strong_professional_relations_with_nintendo

https://nier.square-enix-games.com/en-us/home/