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Haven Review: Technomancer

Now the Technomancer is one of those few games that manages to catch my interest on and from there its hard to grasp how I feel about it as I play through the game.

At the start of the game you get to create your character. How you look the color of your eyes, skin tone, the works and you actually do get to see your character quite a lot on camera to help give it some extra depth.

From there you are given a optional tutorial to learn all the combat controls and combat stances to which there are four different types.
There is the Technomancer build where you control lightning, the Warrior build where you fight with a giant Bow-staff like Robin from Batman. The Guardian which is my personal favorite which is a shield and a mace to beat things with and last the Rogue where you fight with a gun and a knife because swords aren’t a thing.

At first I thought I could use just the single battle stance to get by and for the most part you can but certain area’s really push other stances onto you making the battles much harder.

Next comes a skill tree where you can put points into it and improve which stances you like from Technomancer, Warrior, Guardian and Rogue. The skill tree’s help you unlock new potential strengths to your stances and help you improve during combat.

Speaking of Skill tree’s there are is another used for skill sets from Charisma to Stealing much like something you would experience in a older RPG its good and it helps you loot things and make a lot of money early game if played right. But Ultimately picking which one you want can be a tedious task, I put mine into stealth originally and I wish I put it into charisma afterwards.

Combat in the actual game is really irritating as at the start you got low health and its hard to put more points into your personal chart as you level up because those skill points are given out very rarely once every 5 levels so getting more health is very hard and the game punishes you quite severely for being a low level.

Another issue I found with the game is that the story moves a long at a slow pace to the point where it is very hard to keep on task. I spent the first thirteen hours at the start of the game doing only starting missions and at one point I would have sworn that was the only area for the game. Its a good story though, its just very slow paced due to the combat and the sheer size of the area’s.

Music wise I’ll keep it simple, it sounds very Gothic mixed with electronic vibe and although strange its very fitting for the game as you are based on mars and it feels all ancient with the technology around it.

Now for my biggest issue with the game and possibly the most irritating things I personally have thought of with it. You are on Mars but if you go outside you are mutated by the suns rays and then die due to the radiation from it. Naturally this would be a thing but the fact of the matter is everyone on the planet is breathing air which means there is a Eco-system of sorts in place and they even talk about farms where things grow and mutate so there has to be some degree of a o-zone layer to protect everyone from the suns rays but there isn’t and that so far is the biggest plot hole so far.

The next is Technomancers and mutants in the game are mutations and although its kept secret there are countless scientists alive on that planet who quite literally study genetic mutations and not to mention if this is based in a future of humanity. We already have genetic scientists who can alter a persons DNA now on a whim so the fact that Technomancers haven’t been found out because of their mutations is utterly stupid and another giant plot hole.

The third and final issue I have is water, NASA speculates that Mars has water stored in its crust. Which for the most part I believe is true and that the planet itself does indeed have some water still in it perhaps further down and some in its atmosphere still. But the game makes you believe that there is almost none and its so rare that people want to kill over it. However they got a bar in the town where they sell guess what, beer and any idiot knows that beer has water in it and is readily available to the workers there.

There are just way to many plot holes for my taste, I get it that the game is trying to bring me into its fantasy world of technology, evil corporations as a governing agent but with so many plot holes I can’t experience that immersion that I want. The game is good albeit if you tend to ignore all these issues with plot holes but if you are like me it will annoy you to know end.

-Daniel Clatworthy

technomancer

Haven Review: Kill Me Again

   Kill Me Again is a free mobile zombie puzzle shooter. Your character moves on rails, backwards as zombies advance on you. Your job is to match 3 colors of bullet casings in order to damage to them. The more casings you line up, the more damage you do. You level up as you go, and get skill points to unlock new skills. Some of these are straight bonuses to your stats, others are combo and chain skills. If you get 5 of the same color in a row, you activate one of those skills. It’s all fairly straightforward.

Unlike standard match-3 games, in Kill Me Again you can drag colors from anywhere on the board to anywhere else. This is useful for setting up those 5 block combos, but slows you down so that the zombies will have a chance to eat you. At first this seemed like an interesting way to mix up the stale match-3 mechanic, but after a while it became just as mundane.

One fairly interesting feature is “critical hits”. You can hold off on making a match until a zombie is right next to you and starts to glow red. Make the match at this time, and you’re rewarded with bonus damage. I feel like this was a way to switch up the idea that you should make as many matches as quickly as possible, and put a little bit of timing into the game. While this is a great idea in theory, I found that the bonus damage wasn’t worth the wait. It was much more effective to just make as many matches as quickly as possible. There are bosses in the game, and they have weaknesses to specific colors of blocks. This is one of the better mechanics in the game. You have to decide whether or not to go for those weaknesses or go for matches that activate abilities.

My complaints are small enough so that I wouldn’t say the game is bad; rather it’s simply more of a standard puzzle shooter. The place where this garbage really starts to smell is in it’s micro-transactions. For each level you play, you need pills…two pills per level per try (except boss levels, which cost three). At the very beginning of the game you get 10 pills. You get 14 more from the “Day 1” present box. There are present boxes for the first 8 days of the game. These give you pills, money and the occasional consumable item. The game will periodically give you more pills, seemingly at random. So after you blow through all your pills (about an hour into the game) you’ll need to spend some time waiting around until they refresh.

Of course, you can spend money. You can trade real currency for in-game gold bars. You get 10 of these for $1 (USD), for example. You can spend gold bars on numerous things. The first item will probably be pills for 10 gold bars. You get 10 pills. That’s right. Five more fucking levels of play for a dollar. That’s like 5 minutes. You need to spend a dollar if you want to play for 5 more minutes. You can also spend on new weapons and consumables. Weapons will run you about 5 dollars worth of gold. They are also needed in the game to complete rescue quests, which give you jack-all in exchange for your gold bars. Luckily, if you play long enough you might pick up one or two bars from fulfilling challenges and achievements. So these micro-transactions take the game from a standard puzzle shooter to a greedy cash grab.

-Jordan Kamm-

We received this game for review purposes only, and as such all opinions in this review are our own. No money has been exchanged for this review.

KMAScale

Haven Reviews. Seinarukana – The Spirit of Eternity Sword 2

     Haven Reviews. Seinarukana – The Spirit of Eternity Sword 2

Starting off with a dramatic and quite prophetic dream, the kind that spoils a possible future to prevent. Which ends with our hero murdering some companions and getting impaled on a spear. After this violent nightmare, the hero wakes up hugging the violent bombshell of a slugger. I mean femme fatale, Scratch that. Overly emotional and unstable childhood friend. A complete package, equipped with a very mean and over exaggerated uppercut. Comes complete with it’s own dramatic frame. Because it’s always okay to beat up someone for being mostly innocent. Quite frankly I loathe that type of person. Domestic abuse is not comedy gold. Naturally it starts in Japan, on a Japanese school. A true, tested and generic setting for your average school uniform clad teenager. 

Credits where credits due. The characters looks quite good and has a decent range of emotions. With the expected range of colors, personalities and romantic options. The environment is quite imaginative, with some really stunning locations. Naturally the game comes fully voiced, with great many music scores to set the mood. An impressive amount of effort has been made to actually add some animations and life to the characters, depending on how much action goes on. There is still a lot of tell don’t show and some padding. 

Combat looks quite good indeed. However the resolutions leaves a lot too be desired. It’s very small. The turn based battles take place in a 3d landscape.  The environment here leaves a lot to be desired. Low resolution textures and a lot of clipping. Combat is deceptively simple it seems like. Before combat a team is composed. Based on elemental strength and weakness. Each one is assigned a role as well. Some are good at supporting, while others are good at attacking. Like the main protagonist. All the characters comes loaded with skills. After you engage a fight in Seinarukana, the combat plays out automatically, at least for the early game lot fights. Later it becomes a tad more tactical. Where roles and formations can be switched around. Every now and then there are branching paths, where a series of battles occur in a row. The camera never stops spinning though adn the combat map interface sucks. 

I truly love the ability to, play the game with only using the keyboard. Games that does this is a true treat. I can rapidly skip though the text as well, by holding down Ctrl.  Since there are a lot of endings and choices throughout the story to rigger various events and endings. This comes quite handy. Because the game is around 50 hours long at least, give or take a few. It also depends on the player actual reading speed or if you prefer to listen instead.

 

 

Disclaimer:  We received this game for review purposes only. As such, all views in this article are our own. No money has been exchanged for this.

Njål Sand