By Matthew Wilt
Genre: Action & adventure
Published by: ROCKFISH Games
Release date: Thursday, May 25, 2017
Price: $29.99USD (As of June 12, 2017)
(Information gathered from Microsoft Store)
Everspace is a great game. It is a roguelike set in…well, space. The basic premise is that you upgrade your ship over time, until eventually you are good enough to make it to the next warp. The music is nice, the story is solid, and the controls are palatable. Eventually you'll discover the answers to some dark secrets, but you'll actually have to live long enough to do so.
Everspace is a surprisingly in-depth story. The main story line is delivered in three main ways: Boss Battles, Your ship AI, and flashbacks between zones. I said main story line, because there is also a bunch of lore included in the game in a generic compendium. It has information about the different races, factions, ships, weapons, systems, etc. For people that like to dive into the 'Why' of the game, this section is for you.
What can I say about these graphics? I say they are stunning. Seriously. Phenomenal. I’ve always been a sucker for some good space vistas, and this takes the cake. Even the tutorial area looks beautiful. One of the more impressive views is stumbling upon a giant field of wreckage around a mine field, with a giant storm brewing in the center. Most locations seem completely unique and almost painted into the game.
These views are only accentuated by the music. There are a few times where the music’s escalation helps feed the thrill of the hectic combat. The are other times where the music helps give you that sense of awe when entering a visually impressive zone. There was never a time where I thought the music distracted from gameplay.
Even the cinematics only added to the game. They seemed to be rock solid. They are stylized and provide good contrast to the game. The length of them provide enough insight to the struggle of the main character’s never-ending plight while not become tedious to sit through. The cinematics only appear when you enter the primary warp at the end of every section, so you also do not get inundated with them.
The only thing I thought might have detracted from the game were the default controls. However, I do not attribute that to the creators. You have free reign of the 3D space. That’s a difficult task to manage while also managing to control acceleration in the forward/backward directions. Combine that with the limited number of inputs on a controller, and there is only so many things you can do. However, even saying that, they still did a solid job.
Even with my not-really-gripes about the controls, the gameplay is still top notch. If you have played FTL, you will find it familiar. Basically, there are three distinct sections: The death screen, the map, and the node. The game starts by dropping you into a tutorial node where you learn the controls and basic combat. It is like most aerial combat games, where you fly around locking on to enemy ships and blowing them to pieces with your guns. However, since you are in space, you get a few differences. Sometimes enemies drop upgrades or materials where they will float in space until you pick them up. You also get the opportunity to turn on a dime, so you’ll need to take that into consideration as you are dogfighting and avoid drone combat. Assuming you die, and you will (a lot), then you’ll drop into a between-lives screen. It is here you can upgrade your ship, customize your appearance, or swap ships altogether to help fit your playstyle. Once you drop back in, you see the last section: The map. You see each upcoming node. Once you get enough upgrades for your ship, you can even get more in-depth information about each node like the danger or elemental hazards present.
Basically, I really enjoy this game. However, there is one complaint for the Xbox. The loading times. You will spend a fair amount of time sitting in loading screens, and some of them are just blank screens. I recommend having a book nearby or keeping your phone charged. You will need it.
Even with the long load times, this is still an amazing game. So, should you buy this game or give it a bye? Definitely buy. The game also is on the PC and seems to have VR (according to their site), so there is no excuse. This game has gotten great reviews, so it will be a game to get and talk about, or scooping it up on sale several months from now.
This game is reviewed on an Xbox One console, using a 1080p Vizio TV.
This is an Impression, meaning the game is not finished. That means I cannot give insight into the ending of the story or endgame balance or difficulty. That said, I have put in at least 10 hours of time, and have gotten a reasonable grasp of the game.
I would also like to thank ROCKFISH GAMES for the code in order to do the review.
- Actual feel of progression
- Interesting upgrades
- Takes a bit to adjust to the controls
- Load screens are long and often don't provide visual feedback