Ultra Age, the tried and true 3D action scented by PlatinumGames

Ultra Age, the tried and true 3D action scented by PlatinumGames

Ultra Age

We are in the future and the Earth's resources are no longer sufficient to meet the needs of the population. Humanity, on the brink of collapse, has split into two groups: those who migrated to the space colony called the Orbital Arc and those left on earth in a facility called The Shelter. When the latter decide to cut off the former, a warrior called Age is sent to the planet together with his trusty android drone Helvis. Their aim is to find ways for humankind to survive and avoid extinction. This in a nutshell is the plot that is the background to Ultra Age, a Platinum Games-style 3D action of which we tried the PC demo at the recent Steam Fest.

We are ready to share our impressions.

The tried

Age, the hero of the game Let's start discussing the element that matters most in a similar title . The combat system is typical of the genre, albeit with some peculiarities that give it some reason of interest. Age can bring normal and powerful attacks, combining the keys to create the usual combos. So far nothing that has not already been seen in dozens of titles, including pirouette dances, light effects and particles created by the alternation of shots. To make it all more interesting are the different weapons and the energies that can be channeled into them, which complicate the situation a little. Each weapon is more or less suitable for the enemy on duty and often requires a certain type of energy to be more effective, energy that is obtained by defeating other enemies. In this way the fights become more varied and tactical, especially in the presence of mixed opponents.

In addition, the weapons can be upgraded in various ways: by collecting fragments from enemies that make them level up (level that is consumed with use), by installing modules on them that, for example, increase their damage, or by spending crystals to enhance their abilities, also giving them new powers.

In the demo we could not fully test the weapon progression system, but we had the impression that as the adventure continues they can become truly unparalleled tools of death (maybe those who have tried the console versions will be able to confirm it ed). That said, they're not the only ones you can count on in combat. Age also has its own abilities that can be improved using power-up modules, such as a grappling hook that allows it to lure enemies or collect distant crystals, and Helvis-related abilities such as rewinding time, or a shot. charged that activates damage bonuses for a certain period.

By mixing everything, you get a really varied combat and growth system, which however seem to be plagued by a criticality that we didn't think emerged from the demo: grinding. Yes, to complete the demo we had to start collecting crystals upon crystals, redoing some areas several times to become more powerful.

Age will also meet other characters to interact with Considering that we are only at the beginning, the fear is that with the continuation of the game the phenomenon will intensify, forcing us to many hours of repeated actions to be able to move forward. Another problem detected, we do not know how much it can be solved, is that of the slipperiness of the shots, that is, the absence of satisfactory feedback when the weapons come into contact with the enemies. In fact, it always feels like cutting butter and honestly there is not much difference between hitting a living creature and a robot. That said, fighting in Ultra Age is still quite satisfying, especially when you manage to juggle a multitude of enemies and start mastering all the moves. A greater heaviness of the impacts would have done him much good.

Speaking of enemies, during the demo we basically encountered two types: large crystal-bound lions, called drapoel, part of the fauna of the Earth in ruins, and robots.

The drapoels in particular were over-exploited throughout the demo, appearing as generic enemies (in three different sizes) and in the form of bosses, in larger and more powerful versions. While these are all very similar to each other, the robots have unleashed different offensive skills: there are those who fight only in melee, those who fire rockets but are defenseless from the front, the larger and more armored ones that beat like bulls and the flying ones armed with machine gun. In the final version of the game there will also be other variants. Note that drapoel and robots don't get along very well and fight each other when they share the same battlefield. An interesting detail for the mythology of the game.

The drapoels are the most present enemies in the demo In terms of level design, the Ultra Age demo showed us a fairly usual style for the genre, made up of corridors that act as from moments of pause and that connect to rooms / arenas where you have to fight instead.

The final part, which takes place inside a large and labyrinthine futuristic building, is much more intricate than the initial one, which takes place on the green surface of the planet. Of course, between the map and teleporters it is really difficult to get lost, but the variety is still appreciable. The technical part is less commendable: if the models of the hero and the enemies are very well done, the settings appear instead bare and very generic, moreover not very organic with what they would like to represent. We'll see if the finished version will offer more interesting and beautiful places to visit. True that we are not on a trip, but here we are really at the minimum wage and other titles of the genre simply sweep it away from this point of view.

Ultra Age is a 3D action with an apparently multifaceted and complex combat system, which seems to be a bit sinful due to some flaws of youth, such as excessive grinding, an oriental developer obsession, and a certain slipperiness of the shots, which may not make the fights completely satisfactory. For the rest he seems to be a good exponent of the genre, between ups and downs. In particular, the visual side could slow it down a bit, especially when compared with that of direct competition. However we will see when we have the opportunity to try the final version on PC.


The combat system is complex and multifaceted The progression of the character is interesting Some very challenging battles DOUBTS Hopefully that there is not too much grinding The feedback of the hits is very slippery Have you noticed any errors?

Powered by Blogger.