Friday, June 14, 2024

The Mystery Dungeon of Serpentcoil Island’ Nintendo Switch Hands-On Preview – TouchArcade


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Just lately, my son and I had been invited to attend a particular hands-on preview occasion at Spike Chunsoft’s headquarters in Tokyo to play the upcoming Shiren the Wanderer: The Thriller Dungeon of Serpentcoil Island for Nintendo Swap, which is scheduled for launch in Japan on January twenty fifth and within the West on February twenty seventh. We had been allowed to play the sport for round two hours, and I’ll spoil the outcome proper right here on this introduction: I needed to be torn away from it when the time was up. I’d have performed all of it day if I may have. However let’s get into a few of the nitty-gritty particulars, lets?

Common readers will know that I dwell in sunny Japan, which is mostly a pleasant place to dwell other than the kaiju assaults each Friday. I don’t dwell in a giant metropolis although, so making a visit to Spike Chunsoft’s places of work within the extremely trendy Akasaka space of Tokyo required taking a little bit of a prepare journey. Effectively, a great probability to play some Shiren on my Recreation Boy as a warm-up. We arrived on the places of work a bit early for the occasion, so we loved some drinks on the close by Starbucks. As soon as it was a extra cheap time, we headed up the elevator.

I’ll spare you the remainder of the little particulars, however we quickly discovered ourselves in a room with another journalists. Additionally within the room had been quite a lot of Spike Chunsoft’s individuals, together with the sport’s director Keisuke Sakurai, challenge supervisor Hideyuki Shinozaki, and sub-producer Ryo Nishmura. After some introductions, we had been allowed to dig in to Shiren the Wanderer: The Thriller Dungeon of Serpentcoil Island on the supplied Nintendo Swap models. Two hours must be loads of time, proper? My son and I had been sharing a Swap, and I took the primary flip.

The instantly putting factor is that the sport is in full 3D. Now, it’s been a reasonably very long time for the reason that final totally new launch within the Shiren collection, and that recreation used 2D visuals. Fortuitously, the brand new graphical type nonetheless has all of the allure of the same old sprites. Everybody who must be recognizable is, and the acquainted enemies are trying nice. This new type permits the sport to do some enjoyable issues with the digicam in cut-scenes and such, with one cave scene between dungeons transferring the angle behind Shiren to point out off a beautiful aquarium-like view. It’s not going to win any prizes for finest graphics on the system or something, however it seems good and is trustworthy to the collection.

By and enormous, if you happen to’ve performed any Shiren video games earlier than, you’ll discover this one acquainted within the broad strokes. Shiren is doing that factor that’s in his identify, and stumbles upon individuals in bother. He heads into some dungeons accompanied by his trustworthy pal Koppa to hunt journey and possibly just a little fortune alongside the way in which. Mentioned dungeons are procedurally generated, as a result of this can be a correct Japanese-style roguelike. Layouts, enemies, loot, and extra can be completely different each time you play. There are some issues that carry over from run to run, however if you happen to collapse within the dungeon you’ll lose all the things you’re carrying and be dropped again to degree 1. You’ll nonetheless keep in mind your experiences and hopefully can be higher geared up to deal with no matter defeated you subsequent time.

The Thriller Dungeon of Serpentcoil Island is supposedly extra streamlined in some respects when in comparison with the earlier entry in an try to get again to the roots of the franchise, however I didn’t see an entire lot of that in my transient time with the sport. Shiren is all the time deceptively easy till you understand all of the fascinating methods parts can work together, at which level your mind begins clicking items collectively and issues get actually wild. For instance, your commonplace meals merchandise is an onigiri – you recognize, a riceball. It’s tasty, however it’s even higher when it’s roasted. If an enemy units you on fireplace, any onigiri you’re carrying is likely to be roasted together with you. Possibly you’ll discover an merchandise that lets you stroll in water. That’s helpful! However quite a lot of your stuff will get ruined if you happen to wade round carelessly. And so forth.

Anyway, my first flip ended pretty rapidly. A pumpkin-headed ghost, one of many common enemies within the collection, handed by some partitions and stomped me in a few hits. I handed the controller over to my son, who had been finding out up by taking part in the earlier Swap launch. He seen one helpful new UI function: now you can equip a number of projectiles to make use of with button combos. You don’t should hold getting in and switching between them, making for a far smoother movement. Sadly, my son’s pleasure over this new function would show to be his undoing. He made it farther than I did, however he occurred throughout an enemy that appeared like a giant grasshopper. He fired upon it, and it used a bat-like weapon to launch it proper again at him, one-shotting him. Whoops!

Dad’s flip! This time I discovered a very nice sword early on, and that made a giant distinction. Higher nonetheless, I quickly discovered a wonderful protect. Now we had been cooking with fuel! With these two gadgets I used to be capable of make wonderful progress, making my means by a number of scenic places and assembly some fascinating characters. At one level issues appeared like they had been about to go pear-shaped when a slime leveled up right into a extra highly effective type. I used to be in large bother, however I used an merchandise to confuse it after which made a run for the exit. I made it to the following secure space, and time was up. I had torched ninjas, sliced up these annoying pumpkin-heads, and worn out complete rooms of enemies with one scroll. Ultimately, solely the agency hand of the Spike Chunsoft reps may cease me.

The wild factor is that judging by the overworld map display, I had barely scratched the floor. There was an entire lot extra recreation ready for me, and I’ve little question I’d have run into much more bushy conditions quickly. The joys of escaping that type of factor, the agony of your luck operating out, and that want to choose up once more and go just a little deeper into the dungeons… that’s what Shiren the Wanderer: The Thriller Dungeon of Serpentcoil Island is all about, and I can’t wait to choose up the place I left off with it when the sport releases on Nintendo Swap in February of subsequent yr.


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