Game Reviews, Gaming, Indie Games

Review: Evoland 2

 

Evoland 2: A Slight Case of Time Space Continuum Disorder is the sequel to the indie game hit, Evoland.

The basic story is this: you are a boy who was rescued by a girl’s father. You make your way into the forest and help the girl when you encounter some demons. The demons tell you that they are trying to harness some sort of energy and upon further inspection, you travel back to the war the humans had with the demons 50 years earlier. You must then figure out how to get back to your own time while helping people along the way. The story is simple but is always moving forward and never slips from your engagement. The story mixes well with the gameplay to help keep you engaged, with dynamic characters, funny references to other games or pop culture, and NPC’s feel like people more than they do information machines. The other characters have a good dynamic and feel very lifelike instead of extra swords to swing. The game uses comedy a lot, but never uses it as a crutch so it feels more like a nice addition rather than a focal point. Jokes are often well executed and had me genuinely chuckling a few times.

The game is primarily a top-down RPG with large influences from the likes of Zelda. In Evoland, you would find chests that add things to the game, like better graphics, music, etc. But now that happens through different means. For example, early on in the game, you go back in time and when you do, the game’s graphics were reduced. The game also switches up from combat to stealth game to puzzle solver to keep the player engaged the whole time. For example, after about 1 hour of top down the game switches to an action platformer when you unlock “gravity”.

The game also boasts a unique partner system. For example, The first partner you get does a dash attack if you hold down your attack button. The partners all have cooldowns to prevent from being overpowered. The partner system is very good in my opinion and helps freshen up the puzzles in the wild. The puzzles are fantastic, with the right mix of difficulty and satisfaction. The game takes interesting twists on normal puzzles; for example, instead of having you push blocks onto panels, this game has you attacking mammoths or mamuts to run on panels. Small tweaks like this help give the game a lot of character. The game also does a fantastic job of teaching you while you play. Like when you need to destroy some rocks with your sword to pass through an area right before those same rocks start falling down on you. Players will be able to notice the similarities if not instantly, then after a death or two and will be able to get through unscathed. More games should be able to execute this as well as Evoland does, and the method of teaching the player reminds me of how Mega Man Xs gameplay helped telegraph what to do to the player.

The art style is charming, even in the green and black Gameboy state when you start. The game quickly becomes higher resolution which looks fantastic and lowers the resolution after that which is still good. The HD graphics you see later on are stunning and remind me of Windwaker HD graphics.

The game’s sound design is fantastic and really pairs well with the music to make an enjoyable experience. I found myself dying multiple times because I was either looking at the art or listening to the fantastic music the game contains. The game makes use of instrumental tracks throughout the whole game instead of chiptunes. This was a good decision, as chiptunes are seen in almost every pixelated indie game, and this straying from the norm gives the game, even more, character to stand out from the crowd.

 

Overall Evoland 2 is a must have and earns a 10/10 with a label of “Astounding”

 

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