Astral Chain – Review: Bayonetta mixed with Professor Layton.
While everyone is waiting for Platinum to finally show some more of the Bayonetta 3 announced for the Switch, a typical Platinum game appears for the same Switch that is perhaps even more interesting. Jurjen is amazed at how good Astral Chain is in his review.
This is an adapted review from the Ook Speel-section of Power Unlimited magazine no. 10 (in stores from September 17).
Man oh man, what a top game this crazy new one from Platinum. I call Astral Chain a quintessential Platinum game, and it is, as you spend much of your time in the game in graceful heel-shoot-and-kick battles against all kinds of demonic creatures, including a last minute dodge action that slows down the enemy for a moment, so you can counteract smoothly. But Astral Chain has more to offer.
Astral Chain: Batman Layton
As a futuristic police officer in a neo-tokyo-like environment, you also have to interrogate people in places where a crime has been committed and investigate traces in order to draw the correct conclusions during a quiz that follows. These very quiet phases in the game are a welcome change from the frenetic combat and felt more like a Professor Layton game than something that would roll out of the Platinum studio.
Astral Chain has Dogs, Neurons and Demons
Moreover, as a police officer you also have a fabulous tracking dog on chain! Over the course of the game, you will gain access to five different Neurons, demonic beings bound to you as allies by the power of your astral chain. These Neurons play a star role in the fighting. First, you can let them fight enemies on their own while you are chopping down as a futuristic police officer, but it is much smarter to combine your powers and abilities. For example, you can throw your Neuron at an enemy and ‘chain-jump’ it yourself, or take control of your Neuron directly and circle around a group of enemies to chain them to the ground with the astral chain. Does a demon launch some sort of storm attack in your direction? Then you tension the chain in its path to catch it and throw it back, after which it is momentarily numb. A wonderful moment to unleash a souped-up duo action on the demonic being.
The new form of Platinum combat in Astral Chain
In addition to the new, literally engaging form of platinum combat and Layton-esque research phases, there are also Darksiders-esque switches and environmental puzzles, where you must re-use the special abilities of your Legions. Add to that the RPG-style development structures to empower both your character and the Legions and give them new abilities, and with Astral Chain you get basically everything that makes action adventures fun in a great, anime-like package.
94 Astral Chain has a sometimes somewhat dull and repetitive demon world that you end up in a little too often, but nothing but praise for this daring and successful new Platinum adventure. It has everything that makes action adventures fun, plus special research phases that provide a nice change from the wild action. Astral Chain has a sometimes boring and repetitive demon world that you end up in a little too often, but nothing but praise for this daring and successful new Platinum adventure. It has everything that makes action adventures fun, plus special research phases that provide a nice change from the wild action.