I know, negative reviews on overwhelmingly recommended games won't win me any popularity points, but hear me out.
It breaks my heart to not recommend this. I had really high hopes due to how amazing Bastion was, and I went into this knowing that it is nothing like Bastion, so my dissapointment doesn't stem from that. Let me start off by saying that the combat customization is pretty neat, the art is nice, and the music is really nice.
- The story just isn't that good. Futuristic world is being destroyed by virus-type-invaders and your sword/companion is the key to beating it. The ending is very predictable and there isn't much character development at all. There is such little story that I can't even expand on that without spoilers because of how little story there actually is.
- The atmosphere is pretty but has very little variation. I got really tired of seeing the same grey blocks over and over.
- The enemies have very little variation. You have turrets that buff/heal, fast dogs, floating objects that shoot beams at you, a mortar, am aoe tank, and guys that spawn suicide bombers. Not much else, the listed enemies all look exactly the same throughout the game; the only difference being small buffs as you progress. There are three bosses, each more forgettable than the last.
- The combat is very tedious, and because (as above mentioned) the enemies lack variation, every fight feels the same. There are some great ways to customize your skills and buffs, but everything just feels the same. Since your last shred of action bar can perform skills that would normally take a huge chunk of action bar, every turn you take is just skill stacking just the right way so you can get the big one in at the end for free. It just feels exploity.
- The backdoor area (a special zone where you can access challenges): probably my least favorite thing about this game. The trials are all (save for one) time consuming, tedious and pretty pointless. I did all the trials with very little to show for it other than maybe a level and a half and music tracks unlocked, which as far as I can tell, can only be listened to in the backdoor area.. A place that quickly becomes chore zone. Every time I finished trials, I was more than ready to leave.
- No replayability. There just isn't. Restarting with all your skills would be nice if the skills weren't so bland. It's just doing the exact same thing over and over again a second time.
-The game is incredibly short. I have 7.7 hours logged and I even took my time. I explored thoroughly and didn't move between areas until I knew that I had explored the whole area. I read all the dialogue and accessed/read/listened to/replied to all the terminals and still only got 7.7 hours out of it with no interest in or reason to begin ng+.
- One of the things that irritated me the most is this game has an amazing soundtrack.... but it is hardly utilized in the game. When your in combat, you spend most of your time in a pause-type attack planning phase.. during that phase, the music is replaced by the same humming.. so you spend a lot of time listening to that one track that is her humming the same tune over and over. When you're running around/exploring, the sword is talking the whole time (not a bad thing) and you cannot hear the music at all.
The game was probably overhyped to me, which is probably why I feel as dissapointed as I do. If you love SuperGiant and love hearing Logan's voice (like me) I'd recommend getting it on sale. Otherwise, you might be dissapointed.