July 25, 2019 at 11:35 AM #590
Rating: 1.0 – Terrible
Let this game become extinct.
I have a tendency to pick up relatively unknown games that are generally negatively reviewed and give them a go, because I can’t help but be curious if they are truly that bad or if they are potentially an underrated gem. Extinction came out to¬°¬≠ well, not much, to be honest. It got very little attention, and what attention it got ranged from mediocre to utterly horrible. Is it really all that bad? Can a simple little hack n’ slash game be that terrible? Yes¬°¬≠ yes it can be. Extinction offers nothing new to the scene, and what it does bring is poorly implemented. It’s frustrating, tedious, clunky, and most importantly boring to play.
As soon as you fire up the game you’ll be pretty much be thrown right into the thick of things. Well, not entirely, but the game wastes no time in immediately throwing its backstory at you and moving it along. The story is generic, at least from what I can gather. It moves along so quickly that you really get no details. Tales about mythical heroes¬°¬≠ there’s no hope in the world¬°¬≠ narrator was orphaned and lived by her sword and wits¬°¬≠ thrown in a labor camp¬°¬≠ meets a guy¬°¬≠ suddenly they’re supposedly saving the world from ugly creatures and giants. That’s pretty much exactly how it’s narrated, with virtually no detail about the actual world and no sort of character development or backstory. It’s your typical tale of how the world is doomed and couple people need to save it by forming an alliance and¬°¬≠ yeah, it’s pretty mundane.
This is a hack n’ slash adventure game, though, so who needs a good story if the action is good? As long as it’s satisfying to slaughter your enemies and feel like a powerful badass, that should hold the game up. Unfortunately, the narrated prologue is just a teaser to how generic and boring the game is. Once you get through some very standard dialogue, the game quickly tells you that you need to rescue people by slaughtering the baddies around them called Jackals. Right away it seems okay; you’ve got some different combinations based on timing the attack buttons, it looks like there are a few different upgrades (Because every action game need upgrades and RPG elements these days), and the graphics are okay. The game is colorful, vibrant, and bit more fantastical as opposed to realistic or gritty. You run up to the nearest group of civilians, slaughter the surrounding the enemies, activate the local crystal by holding a button, and move on. Next, you slaughter enemies at the next crystal, activate it, move on¬°¬≠ slaughter enemies¬°¬≠ activate crystal¬°¬≠ before the first stage is over the game feels repetitive. It’s literally doing the same thing over and over again.
Repetition would be okay if the action was fun and engaging, but it’s not. You are just hacking away mindlessly at the same enemy that pretty much poses zero threat. The different possible combo attacks sound neat, but most of them feel exactly the same. I barely feel a difference between a delayed attack and a rapid attack; it’s all just blindly swinging your sword around. There is no satisfaction to fighting the standard Jackal enemies. There are no good sound effects to make it sound like your attacks have impact, and the visual flare looks fairly flat. They try to give the sword swinging a streak effect, but it looks dull and plain. Occasionally there is a crystal on a rooftop that you have to access by jumping. Sometimes you crawl up the wall after you jump on it. Sounds like a possibility to throw in some platforming, but it’s really just jumping and scaling rooftops over and over again in the same repetitive fashion.
By the second level you’re facing off against the featured giants in this game, called Ravenii. This is where things quickly go from bad to worse. Whereas fighting the cookie-cutter Jackals is repetitive and boring, fighting giants is annoying and frustrating. Imagine a poor man’s Shadow of the Colossus or Dragon’s Dogma. Those games had engaging battles with giant bosses where you scale the enemy and target weak points, all while watching your stamina and taking care not to fall off. Here, you just have to repeatedly press the jump button. You don’t really grab hold of the giants- you can scale them¬°¬≠ sort of, but it doesn’t really work. If you trying jumping up the side you’ll get stuck under their arm. You have to climb up the back to get anywhere, and good luck even climbing because they move around so much you can barely get any collisions to register. It’s just blindly jumping and hoping you make it to the top. From there you target weak spots and destroy them, all while loosely trying not to fall down. The concept of fighting giants is poorly implementation, just because of the awful way the game registers ¬°¬įclimbing¬°¬Ī them. You have to get lucky sometimes, and then be careful to not fall off because the whole game starts flailing around. If the weak spots are in the front¬°¬≠ good luck. You’ll spend more time fighting the camera than the enemy.
Speaking of which, the camera is rather clunky. In general, actually, the controls are subpar. When you are top of Ravenii, the camera has a tendency to just start shaking all over the place, which gets disorienting and makes it hard to lock onto anything properly. Even when you’re on the ground, the camera sometimes decides to shift itself for you. You’ll be running between buildings, trying to navigate, when suddenly the camera the camera decides to move to the side, or in front of your character. You’ll move the camera, and it’ll move right back. This particularly happens when Ravenii are on the screen. The camera wants to constantly look at them, even if you’re trying to get some distance and collect your bearings. Running is a little too fast, and it takes some time getting used to it in order to navigate around without constant running into trees or buildings. Running is not terrible, but it’s another annoying factor to add to a list of bad designs. Jumping does not feel tight at all; the controls in general feel a little loose and slippery, making precise gameplay seem like pipe dream.
Even the graphics are shown to be mediocre later in the game. They start off decent enough, with some nice-looking art direction. Once Ravenii start destroying towns, however, you watch as the buildings don’t explode, or crumble, or disintegrate. They just sort of¬°¬≠ melt in mid-air, disappearing into the void. Not only does it look weird, but the effect looks quite dull and generic- the exact same feeling the attack effects invoke. As for enemy designs¬°¬≠ it’s as generic as it gets. The Jackals look like discount Orcs, and the Ravenii look like giant discount orcs, with typical bright green skin and¬°¬≠ that’s the only thing I can even use to describe them. They are that poorly designed. They couldn’t even get good visuals in this game.
There really is no point to getting this title. It has some colorful art design to it at the very start, but that’s about it. Graphical effects are subpar, the main combat is repetitive and boring, battling the giant enemies is clunky and annoying, several of the mechanics are not well implemented, and the story is about as generic and vague as it gets. Both the min playable character and the narrator/ally have virtually no development, and if you have the tolerance to push through the first levels the game will thrown more mundane dialogue at you for the start of every level. The game is very short, and lacking in content, but given the overall quality of this product one wonders if its short length is actually a bad thing overall. This is hardly a niche gem or underrated cult classic. It’s an uninspired, poorly designed mess that deserves to remain unknown and forgotten.
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