ELEX II Review – Gothic Once Gothic Forever Review

Piranha Bytes, known for its Gothic and the Risen series, has just released the sequel to ELEX, an RPG that is a different “Gothic-like” action focused on the post-apocalypse the modern modern era day and with the main character has the Jetpack. The game rectifies the mistakes in the first game, but the core is still heavily influenced by previous company projects, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

  • Producer: Piranha Bytes
  • Publisher: THQ Nordic
  • Publisher: March 1, 2022

“Gothic” can be adored or disapproved of, and there’s no third. Piranha Bytes has always been well-known for its unique RPGs with their advantages, such as real worlds with rich non-linearities, quests, intriguing gameplay mechanics, and more. Then there are the negatives: poor combat system and the making of dialogue and cut-scenes. This is the same for ELEX II – you’ll either like it or dislike it.

The storyline of the sequel installment begins six years following the first game’s events and takes place in the world of Magalan. The people have lost the memory the battle-hardened alb commander Jax joined forces with an opportunistic Hybrid and halted the post-apocalyptic future from being destroyed. But unfortunately, the rival factions have launched the war, and the main character who has abandoned all hope is now a recluse.

His peace is disturbed due to an alien menace from space. It was summoned just before his death by the antagonist invader ships exploded from the sky, and glittering violet “Elex” monsters surged out of the sky. Jax might have avoided the threat, but one of the ships sank directly into his house, and the beast swarmed mortal wounds on him, giving him the motivation to unite the people in Magalan against the threat of the future.

Action in ELEX II progresses quite rapidly, even though the complete game can take around 60 hours. In the beginning, we are introduced to the mysterious man Adam who offers to form a unison “The Sixth Power” and fight aliens. In the next few minutes, we encounter the Berserker Kaya, whom we know from the previous part that she was in an affair Jax over the last six years and the result was her son Dex and plays a significant role in the story.

After a half-hour, we’re taken to the Bastion that will soon become the home of those of Sixth Force – naturally, it’s been neglected and emptied. Guess who will rebuild it and build an army of followers from factions fighting within the boundaries?

You should be prepared because there’s a lot of dialog within ELEX II. Lots of. You’ll see them as boring at times, but they prove how Piranha put their whole heart and soul into their work as they always have.

In the first place, you can speak to any NPC in this list – many are sure to manage to get away with the occasional phrase. However, the likelihood of coming across a random and exciting action is quite significant. For instance, I had a chat with a mediocre merchant Ivan and realized that, as his affiliation is with an opposing faction, he is felt a lot of oppression in the city and would take every opportunity to take advantage of the situation. Unfortunately, the conversation was interrupted by an uninvolved guard laughing at the merchant. So, of course, I chased him away and offered to assist the man in need.

The conversations, however, are RPG rules. They usually give you a decision that can influence the story’s progression. Lastly, the choices available in a dialog are based on the hero’s abilities or the amount of money he has. It is possible to divide the story between the global (level) and local that may seem like nothing; however, they are still hesitant to decide.

For instance, I was required to locate an apprentice alchemist who was late to work at the time. While exploring the marked zone on the map, I ran into an aggressive man from a conflicting faction seeking my target to murder her and then rebrand himself as a journeyman. A dialog box advised me to either assist him in carrying out this plot, threaten him with a sword, or shoot him.

Thirdly, the people with you on Magalan react differently to you based on the words or actions. Reactions can be triggered by various activities, including whether you decide to spare or kill somebody else to whether you take beers to the blacksmith who has asked to purchase it on the spur of the moment.

Regarding the characters in the game, The companions ELEX II, expectantly, includes a few of its former acquaintances, with a few of the most notable characters being just low-profile NPCs from the first. It is possible to ask anyone to join in the adventure and, in contrast to the first part, the companions have grown up significantly. They often have dialogue according to where they are, and, in battle, they are likely to do half the work. This is crucial in the first dozen hours, where the main character cannot combat. They don’t have to be stuck in a place, as in the previous section.

The open world developers immediately declared that they were not planning on making it massive to achieve completeness. Indeed, there are no deserted plains. You will find abandoned houses, towns, towns, traces of civilization, camp sites for bandits, as well as other exciting locations. People who aren’t paying attention will pass by, but those who play Piranha Bytes games know that the ruins may contain valuable items and quests. I was convinced by discovering a “legendary” weapon inside an abandoned hut.

Magalan from ELEX II will be partially familiar to players who played the first game. The game map is shifting toward the east, denying access to the old berserk Haven of Eden and opening up an entirely new, scorched area of Karakis, a ruin of a metropolis. Other areas that have moved from the original map have experienced adjustments, such as Tavar Desert. Tavar Desert has managed to bloom and change into a variety of colors.

ELEX, which is different from the other games of the company, gives players vertical freedom thanks to jetpacks that are barely visible behind you and allow you to fly into space at any time. In the second version, the mechanic also went through positive improvements: the controls have become more comfortable and, if you upgrade the equipment, you’ll be able to fight from the air. But unfortunately, a blaster shot at enemies in the air isn’t an exciting sight to behold.

It was a world where the players, as you’ll recall, were a mix of technology and magic. Here you’ll fight dinosaur-like monsters, later encounter bandits sporting shotguns, and within 100 meters, you’ll meet deadly drones. The location, of course, had an impact on the weapons of the hero and his capabilities and made them varied.

ELEX II inherits the progression of the first game – to achieve any skill, you’ll first need to locate an instructor with a reputation for being “shaky” in the area. It can be a completely obvious NPC, for instance, the proprietor of the bar, or a slightly insane old construction worker who may first try to make you leave home due to it being deceivingly possible to think it’s an innocent “dummy.” The main problem was that it made you learn everything from one person. Unfortunately, I did not see this issue in the sequel.

The process of crafting and making improvements to the equipment is performed on a specific workbench to make armor, ammunition backpacks, better ones, and many more. About the other information I’ve mentioned, I was awestruck that ELEX II has a distributed pumping system. However, be aware that the design you want to build will not be built quickly since certain abilities depending on the faction you choose to join.

In the ancient Piranha Bytes tradition, two factions fight within the game world you can join. They’re mostly in cities and initially restricted to heroes – to gain access, you’ll need to gain trust by completing a few tasks. However, once inside, to become closer to the faction leader and become their ally, you’ll have to complete several more quests.

ELEX II now has five factions (added bloodthirsty Morcons living in bunkers); unlike the first game, which brought you to Berserkers, this sequel opens your options and lets players pick their choice from the beginning. You can join all of them at once. However, you can only enter one. The factions are adorned with beautiful armor and unlocking desired abilities.

I deliberately didn’t include the combat system because it was in ELEX II. It was again an homage to “piranha” video games. which is, it was crooked. It is important to note that the controls are more responsive. New techniques enable you to move during combat, and your enemies now have stamina levels.

We’ll now move on to the weaknesses that the video game has. One of the most noticeable is the terrible animation of the faces of the characters and the absence of any expressions in the dialogues. It’s as if we’re looking at animated puppets that are without emotion. Although machine learning technology has attempted to alter the voiceover so that it can correspond to what the lips are doing of participants, The dialogues are hilarious and embarrassing.

There are NPCs with identical appearances and they aren’t simply people, but scripted characters who have quests and stories.

The other issue is the inefficiency of the optimization, which leads me to notice FPS drop even on PS4. To be fair, I’ll admit that, in addition to delays in cities and other places that are loaded with NPCs, I found only one issue, which was the absence of essential items on the marked area (there were a few, so after the completion of the quest it didn’t have difficulties).

It’s possible to include quests as a disadvantage, and I’m sure that lots of users will discuss them in their blog reviews. However, I’m not sure they’re as bad. There are, obviously, boring giving-and-taking ones; however, ELEX II diligently dilutes and hides these. For instance, in Berserker City, a young boy will request that you protect the empty bottles as he conducts a detective investigation (and you’ll need to protect them from drunks and guards) And your search for the mine in which an NPC has sent you is unable to go through due to the gas leak. You’ll be required to return to him and make a formal complaint and find a different way to gain access to the mine.

Graphics can also be a moot point. In the case of people and things, it’s easy to would like to cry; however, the scenery is a true pleasure.

In summation, ELEX II is an excellent work that corrects the errors and is a great RPG that is reminiscent of the similar Gothic with a delightful post-apocalypse world, a vibrant and diverse world, non-linear options, exciting quests, jetpacks, improved combat that is reminiscent of “piranha” and old-fashioned fighting between factions.

If you’re familiar with the projects of the developer and like them, you should not be hesitant about purchasing ELEX II. If you’ve never experienced them before and you’re not sure, then you’ll either like the project or hate it.

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