Bastion Review: A Smooth Talking Epic Adventure

Posted: July 25, 2011 in Now Playing (Video Game Reviews)
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Pros:
Beautiful Hand Drawn Visuals
The Smooth Talking Narrator

Cons:
Game difficulty gets really easy in later levels.

Imagine yourself awakening to a world destroyed. Everything that you know is gone. Now you must find a way to put it all back together once again. That’s the whole idea behind Bastion on Xbox Live Arcade. It’s an amazing action role-playing adventure that will have you hacking, slashing and collecting all to the sound of a smooth talking narrator.

Bastion, from Supergiant Games, has a different feel then most of your typical games in the genre. The heroic antagonist simply known as “The Kid” is out to rebuild his world that has been destroyed by the Calamity. When I mention “rebuild” I really mean it, because the world literally builds itself right under your feet as you move through each area destroying enemies as well as other objects. Your doing all of this while a smooth jive talking narrator comments on the play-by-play action.

When you start playing Bastion the first thing your going to notice is how amazing the graphics look. The world in Bastion is beautiful. The water painted hand drawn visuals used in the backgrounds are nothing short of absolutely amazing and show a clear sense of depth. The up close graphics are also full of color giving the game life as it builds up around you.

Not only are the graphics out of this world, the in-game narrator will blow your mind as well. The narrator has this smooth talking attitude about him that really fits in with all the action on screen. His narration ranges from the typical seriousness of the storyline to a sarcastic point which will lead to a laugh or two especially if your hacking objects for awhile for loot or you fall off the edge. Clearly this narrator has a voice that would fit on any R&B show, or at least open mike night at the local coffee shop.

OK, enough of the audio/video goodness. Let’s get to the gameplay. Bastion is nothing more than your typical hack-n-slash game. The controls are very simplistic for anyone to pick up and play. You’ll have two buttons mapped out for weapons (one melee and one ranged), the left trigger allows you to use a shield and the right trigger is for special abilities. Unlike other RPGs that allow you to carry multiple items, here in Bastion you can only carry one of each type. You’ll find many weapons across your journey, but when you choose one of these weapons or special abilities it will replace your current one in your inventory so make sure you choose wisely.

While Bastion fits under the role of RPG, the game is also more than just leveling up. Remember that your trying to rebuild your world. The game’s central hub known as “The Bastion” is the place to really build your character. Success on levels will gives you access to their cores. These cores allow you to build shops in The Bastion. Here you can improve your weapons, upgrade your character, gain new abilities and so much more. There’s so much to do in The Bastion that your going to spend a lot of time there.

The time you spend in the world of Bastion contains more that just the campaign. There’s also the Proving Grounds which will test your skills as well as give you helpful prizes to use during the game. There’s also Who Knows Where which are challenging survival missions. Finally, those of you lucky enough the finish the game will find a second adventure which allows you take along all your unlocks for the ride. The only bad part about this is the fact that it makes your next adventure really easy to complete which will have you saying “Where’s the challenge?” In the end, you won’t really care, because this game will really take you in so get ready for the ride.

Bastion is another type of game that exemplifies what Xbox Live Arcade is all about. Congrats to Supergiant Games for delivering a game with an epic adventure, excellent customization and tons of replay value past the first playthrough. I highly recommend everyone to download Bastion today.

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