Axiom Verge is a side-scroller action-adventure game where the player controls Trace, a scientist who, after suffering a crippling injury, wakes up in an ancient and high-tech world.
Completed the game
I got this game solely on the cool title and the cover art. I installed it, played it for 5 minutes and then uninstalled it. “Blergh! It’s a metroid clone.”
Fast forward a couple of years I wanted to play something on my PlayStation Vita. I already had Axiom Verge due to crossbuy so I figured I give it another go. This time I was much more ready for the experience.
Once you get past the first impression of it being a metroidvania, you will start noticing that the pixel art is great, the music is awesome and it is not so impossibly hard as other metroidvanias are. The difficulty is moderate and the game plays very well.
What I love about this game is the slow progression. It starts out with you knowing nothing and slowly reveals more about the world, the mechanics, and the lore. Other games have a tendency of being very front heavy, where it blows off all the rockets in the first hour and the rest is just unentanglement.
Here you get new mechanics and knowledge very late in the game making it worth while to revisit old areas to uncover secret passages that you couldn’t reach before.
Everything about this game is awesome and while reading up on the lore after finishing it, only makes it cooler.
There are things I do not like. While the game is good at teaching you knew mechanics it is very bad at indicating main progression. Several times I went into a dead end just to wonder where I’ll go next. I assume the game wants me to explore, and I did so the first couple of times, but it gets very dull to iterate the same areas again and again just to find the way forward. This really pulls down my final judgement on the game.
When you start getting close to the end, the enemies gets way too resilient to damage, and I find the only way to kill them is by cheesing them through a wall or obstacle. That is not a very fun way to play.
Those things aside I think the length of the game is perfect and the difficulty is also just hard enough. The outdoor environments, the music, oh man the music!