Iron Galaxy, famous for some fantastic ports and the amazing Killer Instinct are looking to shake up the gaming world with it’s new giant slaying sim, Extinction.
Will they manage to make a giant mark or is this just a bunch of old beans and no beanstalk? Read on to find out!.
Extinction at base level looks to be a cash in on the recent popularity of titles such as Attack on Titan, Monster Hunter and Shadow of the Colossus, while sharing some base similarities the game does manage to carve it’s own niche.
Extinction puts you in the boots of Avil, Giant Ogre slayer and hero of the people. Humanity has been plagued by monsters and is dwindelling and it’s down to Avil to jump, air dash and roll his way to saving the remnants of mankind.The story is Extinction is just about serviceable, it’s far from gripping but does try to provide a reason for this giant culling.
Graphically the world and characters of Extinction are bright and vibrant which separates it from the fray at the get go. The setting feels distinctly middle eastern and the monsters are firmly rooted in the Tolken school of nasties. Our main character Avil looks like something straight from Persian stories, with an almost Pixar level of detail on him rather than a gritty, hardened veteran character design.
The animation is beautifully fluid throughout, the game looks stunning in motion and never misses a beat when the giant Ogre-like creatures are wrecking the cities under your protection. The giants are also brilliantly designed and animated, alot of work has gone into them here to really hit home the scale of them. The weakpoints are clearly marked but in a natural way. The gameplay is almost breathtakingly fluid, the motion is spot on and the sense of speed is unrivalled amongst this titles peers. Everything about the game has an impressive amount of polish to make it as appealing as possible, this unfortunately doesn’t extend to the core gameplay loop which feels a little too shallow and repetitive.
The campaign is a collection of missions designed to teach you how to play the game, tied together with a thin narrative which feels like you came into it halfway through. Each mission generally revolves around you saving enough citizens or killing enough of the smaller grunt enemies, to charge your Rune Strike which in turns allows you to smite the giant Ogre/s of the level. Lives are infinite, the only punishments lie within the rewards system and the “City Health” meter, once that depletes the level ends. Once you have enough power in your “Rune Strike”, you can take on the Ogre. Certain parts of it’s body is weak to your strike, you can aim it which triggers a slow motion mode and hit the keyspot to relieve him of said body part.
Here the cracks really shine, despite the fluid controls for movement they seem to fight you at every chance they get here, plus the camera has Sonic Adventure syndrome!. The game has several variations of Ogre, some have weapons, some have armour, they all die the same way just with various levels of effort. This is the core gameplay of Extinction, it rarely strays and sadly loses most of it’s lustre after the first few hours. You can upgrade your abilities to help you with the various campaign missions, there are also online modes and a survival mode to tackle. The game also has weekly challenges to keep players returning to test their Ogre killing mettle.
Extinction is an enjoyable but shallow romp, feeling closer to an indie or budget title, the game sits awkwardly in the middle. It does feel like this could be the start of something special if the main gameplay is given more variation & The story writing is addressed. Extinction should hold your attention for a few plays before fatigue sets in, it has a nice enough hook but not enough power to really slay you into submission.
Extinction (PlayStation 4) - 6/10
- Fluid gameplay
- Vibrant graphics
- Shallow gameplay loop
- Wonky camera
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