Redeemer: Enhanced Edition Review – Nintendo Switch

Developed By: Sobaka Studio

Published By: Koch Media

Reviewed By: Tyler Higgs

Thank you so much to Koch Media for providing a review code

Video games can be brutal, there’s no doubt about that. Many video games derive their entertainment from their sheer level of action and violence. Is there an issue with this? No, not at all, because this serves as an important gameplay aspect for many players. The importance of developing an action packed game is to add enough unique qualities to it, so it’s not solely relying on its over the top levels of action. Which category does Redeemer fall into? Let’s find out

Story

You play as Vasily an ex super solider who is betrayed by the organization he worked for. To escape death Vasily hides away in a hidden temple and learns the way of the monk’s in hopes of living a peaceful life. Peace can, sadly never last forever as Vasily’s old friends come to pay him a visit. They destroy the temple and take some of the monks held captive including Vasily’s Sensei. With the odds stacked against him Vasily resorts back to what he knows best.. killing. Suddenly, an adventure full of bloodshed is set to take place.

Redeemer is a classic story of vengeance. There’s really not much more to it then that.

Gameplay

Redeemer is a 2D top down action game. The gameplay in Redeemer is a straight up bloodbath. The main game mode is the campaign which has three different difficulties. Your goal is to make it to the end of multiple different levels by destroying everything and everyone that stands in your path.

The combat relies on multiple elements to take on enemies. Your first option is to solely use your body for combat. You have two types of attacks, punches are light attacks and kicks are your heavy attacks. You can chain them together for combos and to unleash even more devastation. When you deal the final blow of a combo on an enemy, the camera will zoom in on you and let you watch the blood rain down!

When you’re fighting up close and personal with enemies there a few mechanics you should be aware of. By pressing the L bumper when an enemy changes to the color red you can parry their attack. In addition to parrying when a red skull appears over top of an enemy you can hold down the A button to execute them. These are both essential combat mechanics to utilize.

Scattered around each level are weapons that come in the form of melee and ranged weapons. Melee weapons essentially act as a stronger alternative to your regular attacks, while ranged weapons are items such as pistols and shotguns. Each weapon has its own durability or ammunition, so it’s important to always be looking around for your next weapon.

The fun doesn’t stop here as you can also use your the environment against your foes. You can find items such as chairs, or barrels containing chemicals to toss at your opponent. Certain objects in the environment can also be interacted with to execute an enemy. If you get an enemy close to an object such a table saw, you can grind their face into it and execute them. I really liked having the ability to interact with the environment and use it to my advantage.

The variety in different enemies that you’ll have to fight against is one of Redeemer’s biggest highlights. Enemies range from soldiers, to mutants and other grotesque looking monsters. Many of these enemies have completely different attack patterns that you’re going to have to adapt to if you want to survive. It makes the gameplay feel more diverse and helps it not feel overly stale.

As you mow down waves of enemies Vasily will gain experience depending on what weapon or melee attack he was using. Experience goes towards leveling your efficiency with certain weapons, or attacks. After a specific skill levels up enough you will receive a perk point to unlock a new perk. For example, after gaining a skill point for your fist melee attack, you can unlock a charge attack to use. There’s quite a few different perks to gain and they all feel quite useful.

In each level you can also find scrolls and tablets. Scrolls and tablets each allow you to immediately gain a level in a monk, or solider skill (melee versus ranged weapon). I wish the tablets and scrolls could have been a bit more useful than simply letting me add a level to one of my skills.

With the amount of action going on it sounds like Redeemer is really the ultimate action game package. Well, I wish that was the case, but unfortunately there’s some issues that really drag down the whole experience.

The first gripe I have with the game is that it doesn’t highlight items you have to interact with. I don’t mean items you can toss at your opponents, I mean doors and buttons you need to use to open pathways. This became very annoying as I searched around an area trying to figure out where to go next.

The combat is entertaining, but it can get to be fairly repetitive after a while. I was happy to see such a nice variety in enemies, but some of the stronger enemies take away the fun of the game’s outrageous combat. Powerful enemies cannot be executed, and take a lot of time to kill. You’re going to have to pull out multiple weapons and attacks to be able to take them down. It took away from the game’s fast paced combat and became a nuisance.

Redeemer does offer a few boss fights, but there’s only a few of them and they’re relatively unengaging. The combat does succeed at being fairly entertaining for the most part, but I can’t help, but be frustrated by some of these underlying issues. Sadly, the gameplay isn’t the only aspect of Redeemer that has issues.

Extras

The enhanced edition of Redeemer does offer a co-op option for you, should you be interested in taking on this violent adventure with a pal.

For extra game modes Redeemer offers a game mode called “Arena”. Arena consist of a few different levels that act as wave survival challenges. Your goal is to try and survive as many waves of enemies as possible and see if you can make it to the end.

Presentation

Redeemer is a fairly average looking game with some issues that take you right out of the experience. Each level is different from the others and has its own unique design which was nice. The enemies you fight off against ad I mentioned earlier are also well designed.

My issues with the presentation comes from the terribly wonky animations. Most of the time when the game panes in on an you as you deal the final blow to an enemy the attack doesn’t even connect. You will see so many animations like this where the character models will suddenly move into place, or simply not look like they connected their attack at all. It’s so sad to have an issue like this, because it really hurts the game overall.

The soundtrack is alright, but for a game centered around nonstop action I would have preferred something even more energetic than what we got.

Technical Issues

Redeemer struggles with frame rate issues throughout pretty much the entire campaign. For the most part they’re not too serious and they don’t make the game unplayable. However, there were a few levels where the frame rate issues became crippling and it would extend over almost the entire level.

The developers have expressed their understanding of the frame rate issues and are working on a patch to resolve them. At the time of this review, however, they have not been addressed.

I also had an issue with falling through the map, clipping between walls, and getting stuck in objects. It happened once in almost every level and sometimes would require me to restart at the last checkpoint.

Summary

I had a blast playing through Redeemer, but I can’t cover up its underlying issues. It’s frantic action is fun for awhile, but it can grow tiresome over time. The visual glitches and animation issues, along with the significant frame rate issues really takes down Redeemer’s quality of gameplay with a hard charged-punch. For those who are craving an action-packed journey of redemption you might be able to look past these issues. However, in its current state it might not be for all fans of the action genre.

6/10

Pros

  • Crazy Action Packed Gameplay
  • Tons of Variety in Enemies
  • Leveling up Skills Provides Useful Perks
  • Co-op & Arena Mode

Cons

  • Typical Story of Vengeance
  • Significant Frame Rate Issues
  • Wonky Animations
  • Combat Can Become Repetitive
  • Glitches That Cause You to Get Stuck Behind Walls, Etc

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