Trulon: The Shadow Engine Review
Trulon: The Shadow Engine
An okay experience suffering from "Poor Port to Console"-itis
When I first read the description of Trulon: The Shadow Engine, I was intrigued. I’ve tried a card game RPG before and it was a fun, but not riveting, experience. I was worried I wouldn't have fun. As I started playing on my Xbox One, I was starting to get into the flow and enjoy myself. I started to learn the character types, and was really starting to bring out their potential in the various card types. Unfortunately, I started finding more and more bugs until, finally, I hit a bug so game breaking that I simply couldn’t continue. This was at the 8 hour mark, which should be close to the end of the game (but isn’t).
The game drops you into the boots of a monster hunter named Gladia. She starts out as a jack of all trades character, and you quickly start dispatching enemies. You soon discover that the monsters and disease in the area are related, and pick up your first additional party member: a caster named Ferra. S/he (honestly, I can’t tell. I probably missed a pronoun somewhere) becomes an asset to the team, while you discover the source comes from a neighboring kingdom. There is more story, but honestly, it is such a short and transparent story, I’ve already covered around a quarter of it. There aren’t really any surprises, as even the big twist is spoiled by the character design from when you first meet them. The game telegraphs who your future partners will be, so there isn’t any wow factor their either. Each person you pick up fills a typical RPG roll (tank/crowd control, DPS, Buff/Healing, and Debuff).
There might be another character, but I don’t know. Why? Because when I was close to finishing, I hit a bug that prevented me from fighting a boss that blocks the path. I’ve tried restarting my console and I’ve tried restarting the game. I would reinstall, but on the chance that this would delete my game and set me back 8 hours, I decided to give up. However, I feel confident that this will probably happen to most players until they patch it. The sad thing is, I ignored the warning signs until that point. I had frequent lighting issues, rubber-banding, sound issues, issues with title cards, and many more. Why did I keep playing? Well, I wanted to be able to thoroughly review the game. BUT ASIDE FROM THAT, it was genuinely fun when it worked. Figuring out how to overcome each battle was fun, but sometimes suffered from a case of “you just have bad luck”. You also struggle a lot until you get into your groove with your decks. Once I got good cards to pull off combos and proper control, the game got a lot easier (but still presented its challenges). This is one of the standard RPG progressions. You are weak until you start to master your skills and more powerful abilities. Then, you start to become a threat. Then, the game starts to get easy because you outclass everything and you keep getting rewarded with even more strength.
What does this mean for you? Well, if you like RPGs that last under 10 hours, with an okay story and mildly bland characters, this might be worth a pickup if you find it on sale. But, for everyone else, I would sadly say to avoid this port until you can confirm the bugs are worked out. I give this game a 3/5. What does that mean? Take it or leave it. You'll likely have some fun, but won't regret passing it up.
Thank you Kyy games for the review code!