The entertaining, thoughtful combat and engaging exploration of Unsighted combine with a wicked premise. As Alma, you’re a human-like automaton who awakens with amnesia and faces two problems. Raquel, your partner is missing. The world’s Anima has been lost. This is the energy that allows automatons to have emotion and will their own decisions. An automaton that runs out of Anima becomes an unsighted monster, a mindless creature. Alma’s action-adventure romp becomes a genuine race against the clock to spare as many friends as possible from this fate.
I love that Unsighted’s unique premise isn’t a bluff. Every person you meet and every friend has a clock visible through conversations. The timer is measured in in-game hour hours and indicates the amount of time that they still have to turn into monsters. Your fairy-like companion, shopkeepers and quest-givers. No one is exempt – yourself included. If someone goes Unsighted, you’ll have to put them down, which means you miss out on sidequests or, if it’s a vendor, the option to buy certain goods. An Animal House-style “where are they now?” ending shows what happens to the people you save and provides plenty of good reasons to replay the adventure.
These genuine stakes kept me engaged throughout the journey as I tried to save whoever I could, making me question my actions in ways I normally wouldn’t. How much time do I invest in solving an optional puzzle or hunting for Meteor Dust, which is a rare and expensive resource that can be used to keep someone from losing their way? This system can be stressful, but time doesn’t fly too fast, providing room to comfortably explore for the most part. You can also relieve the stress by not being sighted. You can, for example, craft items if you are unable to find a vendor and save Meteor Dust. There’s even a character who can kill an NPC of your choice and add their remaining time to yours. Although this option presents a moral dilemma, I have used her services twice. Both times, I felt both dirty and relieved.
Unsighted does an excellent job covering its bases in the event everyone gets wiped, and while selfish players can get by letting everyone suffer, I found compelling reasons to keep characters around. Meteor Dust also raises NPC’s affection level, which rewards discounts on valuable gear or opens side missions that you discover as you talk to folks about their backstories. I fought tooth and nail to keep Iris, Alma’s fairy-like companion, around long enough to learn the fate of her missing sister. I felt terrible when people turned me down, whether it was because they lost easy-to-access items or because my personality grew on me.
Five meteor shards are required to save the world. They must be collected across five interconnected biomes at different levels. Unsighted’s slick combat allows players to dual-wield combinations of melee weapons and firearms. It feels amazing and takes a careful approach. Thanks to the stamina meter, and satisfying parry that stuns enemies for deadly counterattacks, it is a great action. Deflecting several incoming attacks was fun, and one-shotting stun attackers was a great way to have my heart beat faster. Even though shotguns, pistols, and flamethrowers all have active reloads for extra tension, it can be a little tricky to time the timing. It’s tough to find the right balance between fun and challenging with all of your enemies.
I enjoyed tinkering with Alma’s capabilities using ability-granting chips, which let you create specific builds and negate more restrictive elements. A chip, for example, that eliminated the running stamina cost was something I discovered. Chips can be supplemented by cogs that provide temporary effects such as an invulnerability or instant revive. Although platforming is fluid and feels better than I anticipated in a top down game, it is difficult to judge distances or angles when jumping. Falling doesn’t damage Alma, but it is still irritating. Overall, however, Unsighted is like a nightmare.
The pixel-art world was beautiful and I enjoyed discovering shortcuts and hidden upgrades. There are many dungeons with amazing design. They also have a lot of fun options, such as an ice grenade or grappling hook. It’s as fun as riding through a factory filled with lava in a mechsuit and then climbing up a spinning top that looks like a Beyblade to ride the rails. While the puzzles seem well thought out overall, some are tedious. The best Metroid games have progression-based abilities that serve other purposes than opening doors. The grapple hook is a great tool to pull enemies toward me, and I love zipping between gaps.
Its fascinating world and amazing combat hooked me. The adventure also features a clock with a doomsday function that adds to the excitement. It’s one of my favorite surprises of the year because my actions made a genuine impact on the world, and they didn’t always pan out the way I hoped. Even though I made some mistakes along the journey, my determination to see this extraordinary adventure through to its conclusion only increased with every hour.
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