World design is one of the reasons I’ve been back in video games for years. From the early days of spending time in magazines awakening links and pouring maps of Super Mario RPG, to time exploring Dark Souls Road Run and Bloodborne Yarnam.
There are countless articles about the design and architecture of the amazing world of games, including Ewan Wilson’s excellent analysis of Piranesi and the infinity of games. Overall, the game doesn’t feel strange enough in terms of architecture and world building. That’s why Shattered – Tale of the Forgotten King is real fun and incredibly frustrating.
Developed by French studio Redlock Studios, Shattered captivates you as a mysterious hooded character wandering through a strange and abstract world that seems to be inspired by the work of Jean Giraud, Mobius and Tsutomu Nihei. Mechanically, it’s like a soul with regenerating healing items, stamina bars, and bonfire-style checkpoints. Unlike the soul game, the platform is much more focused and the avatar can double jump and dash in the air to assist in exploration.
Narratively, you’re pushed into the strange dead world of Digital Essence and Demiurge, many names are thrown at you in short series, and a strange white sprite on your back for a minute of esoteric riddles and fluttering numbers. Talk on the Fourth Wall-Break the next side. Switching between both styles quickly is sometimes very frustrating and endemic to the story of requiring a large investment, even though the idea is never meaningfully combined. ..
The entire set-up of the story with the apocalypse and its positive proclamation of the King of God abandoning the universe feels like Tom Parkinson’s plot-Morgan’s amazing webcomic Kill Six Billion Demons, but he’s you The comic ideas that will be the first to speak to him come from countless mythological sources, so rather than suggesting that plagiarism, it’s a good, attachment without a well-written character. I would like to emphasize that it is a kind of lofty celestial drama that is very difficult to feel. Unfortunately, Shattered has lost them.
Thankfully, Shattered has Canny Art Direction in Spades and a design of a mortal world. I relentlessly pressed the screenshot button while exploring the strange and desaturated landscape of the game. As you explore the strange limbo world of floating rocks and dimensional doorways early on, the game shifts the camera and presents the platform section from a unique angle. It looks beautiful, but at the expense of accurate jumps.
The early area mimics a typical fantasy area with a desolate surrealist edge, moving from strange mountainous areas to old-fashioned fantasy villages fragmented into floating segments. The game shows a small range of enemies in the same style as the main character, all strangely shaped limbs, and a masked face.
Unfortunately, the fighting is as floating as the platform – the parry is based on some diagonal timing that I never got the hang of, despite hours of practice. The impact has no meaningful feedback, and the hitbox doesn’t seem to match the enemy’s animation exactly. In combat, the two marionettes look and feel like they’re hitting each other. Mark took off half of your poor health bar.
After fighting through early areas, such as a clean side-scrolling section on a moody aqueduct, you’ll eventually plunge into ancient lands. Here, Shattered moves from a dingy abstract dungeon to a vast and vast open world. A strange and impossible structure is imminent.
It’s a great moment, and if you keep a keen eye, you’ll also grab a great hoverboard that you can boost around. If you can see the mountains, you can go there, as the old saying goes. There is friction there. Just as that old sentiment turned out to be impossible to do justice in the games of the time, it flattens here as well.
You can go anywhere, but it’s important to note that when you die, you usually return to a long trek, a checkpoint, from where you died. You can also go see all the weird unfinished corners and crevices around the world that obviously require a polish pass. Giant-locked doors stop moving and there are no clues as to how to get over them. The Brutalist Monolith gives you an item you don’t know what to do or asks for an item you don’t know how to get.
Exploration is sometimes magical. Go through the valley and find a huge palace with bright red walls protected by your boss. You can see that it is actually a labyrinth of claustrophobic corridors. This has its own charm. He also discovered a network of floating platforms that had to be navigated with nasty controls, failed over and over again, and had a strange tableau of frozen NPCs on the other side, or a one-mile-high gate. You may also discover that it is locked and has no functionality. Tells you what the key is and where it is.
Not knowing where to go is an aversion to enjoying games like this, and obfuscation and abstraction do not successfully gel the big yawns of time between each slight advance. It’s unfair to compare a small indie project to the Breath of the Wild, but Shattered seems to have apes some of its design clues due to the scattered enemy camps.
Unlike Breath of the Wild’s new playground, these enemy camps are encounters with copy-and-paste enemies and reward the same upgrade materials that may not be available until you forge a fragment that allows you to upgrade your forging at home. Give. It’s great to see the ambition and scale from a small studio, but the Shattered review copy I received is incomplete and the vast number of brutal monuments to the dead kingdom can’t hide it.
The mysterious and abstract nature does not marry progress. Combat is deadly at best, and in the worst case it is uneven and buggy. While exploring, you may encounter bosses and enemies that will wipe you out without warning. I don’t know if the reason for the failure is because it’s not ready, it’s out of gear, or it’s just on the wrong track.
When you die, the phrase Aeons Lost seems appropriate to appear on the screen. Because I often feel that the only penalty for dying is a waste of time. Not knowing which path to follow, which area to explore, or which enemy to attack is neither coherent nor logical. It may reflect the confusing aesthetics of the world, but it’s just not satisfying to get through.
Shattered becomes a valuable experience by defeating flaws and bugs, providing a way to show direction and progress in the face of its grandeur without depriving the game of mystery, and strengthening combat. But now it’s a hollow joy.
Shattered – Forgotten King’s Story Review –
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