Nier Automata: Review

Nier Automata

 

Released first in Japan February 2017 and then released March 17, 2017 Worldwide. NieR:Automata is the sequel to the game entitled “Nier” and is a spin-off of the Drakengard series.

 

Game Style

  • RPG
  • Open World
  • Single-Player
  • Apocalyptic
  • Hack & Slash
  • Engaging Story

 

Platforms: PS4

Publisher: Square Enix

Developer: PlatinumGames

Release Date: March 17, 2017 Worldwide

Price: $59.99 USD

 

 

 

Story Line

This game is set in the future (around year 11000 AD) on a dystopian Earth and is inhabited by evil machines whose goal is to eradicate all androids and human life. The humans lost the previous war against the machines and the few that survived relocated to the moon. The humans were too few in number to fight so, they employed androids to fight the machine threat and reclaim Earth.

 

Nier Automata

 

Expectations

 

The Beginning

When selecting a new game of any difficulty it jumps right into the action. The player will play as 2B who is a combat specialist android. 2B is tasked with taking down the “Goliath”. The game starts in an overhead view as you will be piloting a flight unit. The game quickly goes over the flight unit abilities as you progress to the destination. After you reach land you are then tossed into battle to figure out combat and the basic controls.

 

I recommend playing the game on Easy or Normal until you figure things out because if you die at any point in the “tutorial” level you have to restart from the very beginning. This can be extremely frustrating and turn you off from this great game. You can also always change the difficulty at any time if the game gets too tough or too easy.

 

Mechanics

There are a plethora of ways to destroy your enemies by using a mixture of different kinds of weapons and combo attacks. The fighting consists of using the heavy attacks, (which are slow and powerful) light attacks, (fast and weaker) or by using the pod support for ranged attacks. The player can do combos for more potent damage that requires the player to input specific kinds of attacks in succession.

There is not only just hack and slash there is also some platforming in this game where you have to fight incoming enemies from your right and left. It adds an interesting twist to a game with an already fun combat system.

 

Plugins

Plugins are adjustable ways to create different kinds of play styles for the android. If playing a ranged attacker is the goal then you can upgrade and install Ranged Attack Up chips which will allow you to do increased damage from range. If a more aggressive in your face style is what the player is after installing some critical up and attack up chips will make quick work of foes.

 

 

Difficulty

This game has 4 difficulty choices.

  • Easy
  • Normal
  • Hard
  • Very Hard

I played the game mostly on Hard and a tiny bit on Normal. On the Hard difficulty it can be challenging but rewarding so, if you are under leveled (for quests) you are going to have a bad time. Being killed in a single attack by a higher level enemy is fairly demoralizing but this can be combated by using the proper defense plugins, items, recovery tools and strategy.

 

 

Time Expectations

5 to 30 Minutes Between Saves

The roughest part of the game is certainly the beginning. That beginning sequence took me longer than an hour (because I refused to change the difficulty from Hard and had to redo it 6 times) but once you get past that, there are many save locations that are scattered through the gigantic world map. It is very casual friendly after the intro.

 

 

Replay Value

The game has multiple endings and is expected to be played multiple times. The second play through will give a different perspective of 2B's story and some additional back story on the machines that you fought so hard to defeat.
The first playthrough took me about 17 hours to complete the main story. I did not complete all the side quests or even explore all the locations fully.

 

 

Achievements

Yes, of course! There are achievements for this game.

 

 

 

Hardware Requirements

This game is not very demanding and can be played on a range of PC hardware. If you have a middle range GPU (GTX 960, R9 380, GTX 1060, RX 580) and CPU (AMD FX or APU, Intel i3) you should have a very enjoyable experience. PS4 provides a smooth 30fps game play exerience for console users. PS4 Pro provides a higher resolution and textures than the PS4 and will provide a visually superior experience.

 

Minimum Recommended

OS: Windows 7/8.1/10 64bit
Processor: Intel Core i3 2100 or AMD A8-6500
Memory: 4GB Ram
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 770 VRAM 2GB or AMD Radeon R9 270X VRAM 2GB
DirectX: Version 11
Storage: 50 GB

OS: Windows 8.1/10 64bit
Processor: Intel Core i5 4670 or AMD A10-7850k
Memory: 8 GB Ram
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 VRAM 4GB or AMD Radeon R9 380X VRAM 4GB
DirectX: Version 11
Storage: 50 GB

 

 

 

The Good and Bad

 

Pros Cons
  • Fantastic and Enjoyable Combat
  • Adjustable Difficulties
  • Impressive Zones
  • Great Soundtrack
  • Different Playstyles
  • You Get To Ride A Moose/Boar
  • FPS Drops In Cutscenes
  • Can Permanently Lose “Plugins”
  • Some Camera Issues
  • Potentially Grindy

 

 

Recommendation

Going into the game I had almost non-existent expectations. The only thing I knew about the game was the basic combat. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that there is much more to the game like hacking, a massive map to explore, lots of enemy diversity, an interesting set of characters and a story with some twists. Overall, I was very satisfied with the game and would recommend this game to anyone who enjoys hack and slashy RPG games.

 

   Recommended   

 

 

 

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