This past weekend at PAX there was a host of games. More than usual, some of the top publishers had a lot of playable products on the show floor. Perfect World came into town and had Remnant: From the Ashes from Gunfire Games among their titles. This game surprised us with its fast-paced action and dark mood. Once inside the demo we stayed for the intense gameplay and determination to succeed. That is right fans of Dark Souls, you have something new to look forward to. Remnant is tough, but in a fantastic way.
We began our demo playing the game solo. You can also play with up to three other friends, which would have been great. For now, my solo trip started through the city. The game is a third-person survival shooter with strong movement and timing. I had a host of weapons for long and short range. The pistol and shotgun to start which I could easily switch. You also get a melee attack for when things get close, which they will, however that is kind of a last resort. There are plenty of upgrades and ways to craft in the game, but for the demo it was just a quick run through.
Beginning in a dark ally you move through the subway where you face the Root, monstrous demons from another dimension. Some come with the luxury of fire that can be deadly. They move in fast so being solid with your shots is important. In the first wave we ended up resorting to melee which was, a bad choice. So, on my second attempt, I made it much further. The subways were creepy and offered an intense environment which after dying quickly made you check what was around each corner. There was a variety of demons until we came to the surface and the boss fight. This otherworldly dragon was no joke.
The fight mechanics were very tricky. Targeting the underbelly of the dragon while avoiding fire blasts and more importantly not walking in the pools of oil made for a lot of running and shooting from afar. The fight was extremely fast paced as the AI dragon knew exactly where I was to cause havoc on my attempts to heal in the corners. After several attempts I got the hang of it though and was able to target its weak spot. Remnant is all about trial and error though, it is not for quitters. The rewards are very satisfying though as I did jump up at the demo station when I started to get the better of the fight.
Next, we explored a jungle scenario which had a different version of the Root demons that we had faced before. The city demons were fast and much more attack heavy while the jungle creatures were mobile and very hard to target. The team pointed out that the Root adapts with each environment so players adjust their skills continuously. Sadly, the demo had to end as we ventured into the jungle, leaving me wondering what bosses would lurk around the vines.
Gathering resources is what Remnant is all about. Humanity has it rough after the rifts opened and the monsters came in, and as a player this game is designed to test you. Once you got the hang of the rhythm and combat dynamics, Remnant really does shine, don’t get us wrong, the game is not easy, but that is what creates the charm. Looking forward to playing with some friends when the game launches and we get the chance to take on some of these bosses directly. As you build your character there will be a lot of options in this dark universe for survival. Remnant looks to be a fun addition to the adventure RPG genre which rewards skill and timing. It has a learning curve though, but the rewards of beating some of those boss fights are well worth it.