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Astral Chain gets a print ad in Famitsu

Chain, chain, chain

Is Astral Chain going to have a solid debut in Japan, or the rest of the world for that matter? I honestly have no idea, as it seems Platinum's titles have a hard time connecting with audiences. I really hope that's not the case here, because it looks like Astral Chain is worth every bit of praise. Do you plan on picking this one up?

Check out the full Famitsu reviews for Astral Chain and Oninaki

A bit more insight

We've already covered this week's Famitsu review scores, but now we have the text to go along with two of them. First up is Astral Chain, which scored a 37 out of 40. Check out how each reviewer came to their conclusion with the blurbs below.

1st reviewer: The presentation is flashy, cool, and meaty, I got continuously pulled in even from the introduction. The beautiful graphics are top-notch, and the science fiction police story is also interesting. The investigation part using “Legion” makes my senses tingling on finding out what happened, and I also become addicted in purifying areas despite them looking plain. The battles make use of the background setting which is connected by chains, I felt really good in controlling them. I’m also glad with the customization in the Guardian mode. 9

2nd reviewer: The “Dual Action” is interesting as you fight by controlling the protagonist while using “Legion” to control important places. By switching Legions and weapons, you can split the usage of various battle styles which is fun. Actions using the “Chain Bind” which uses chains that connect Legions also give a good accent. The content is not completely devoted to battles, as you can also use Legions for investigations which is good. Being able to have 2-player co-op is also awesome. 10

3rd reviewer: The protagonist has a position like a beast tamer who controls “Legion”, but as you fight together, you will think of them as reliable buddies. As you use the Legion chains, launching attacks at the perfect timing is extremely exhilarating. Each and every action is very cool. Each Legion has its own characteristic, so you’d fight while switching between them depending on the enemies and stage gimmicks which is also fun. Using Legions in not only battles but also scene investigations is also somewhat different and interesting on its own. 9

4th reviewer: The all-direction method of creating [the game] that assumes a broad range of player base is awesome. You can adjust the play style (difficulty) in detail based on your skills, so even if you’re bad at action games you can taste the mood of becoming good in them. The “Chain Actions” are also fresh, as they can be used in not only battles but also investigations which make them interesting. Although I felt a bit of complexity in the controls, the presentation is overally good with a sense of presence, so I got excited just by holding the controller. 9

Next up is Oninaki, which scored a 31 out of 40. See how reviewers felt about the game below.

1st reviewer: The story depicts the way of life of a Watcher who has a unique view on life and death, which is very shocking yet intriguing and interesting. The instant job-change from inhibiting Daemon is unique, and learning major techniques also makes the battles more fun. The growth training shows glimpses of sad episodes which stab my chest. While the system where you come and go between two worlds is a common thing, it matches with the background setting. The existence of a different law also gives an accent which made it feel good. 8

2nd reviewer: The serious style based on reincarnation is appealing. Above all, the story in a world with a unique way of thinking about death will pique interest. The gimmick of coming and going between the worlds of the living and the dead also matches with the [gameplay] system and the world setting. Although I wish it could have a bit more feels of tempo and exhilaration, the structure where the weapon and available actions change by switching Daemons has a fun factor. The growth features such as learning new techniques and abilities are also fun. 8

3rd reviewer: A heavy story that question the view of life and death. The sad scenes continue, and the breathless story development may not be liked by some. Progressing through maps while switching between this world and that world made me perplexed at first, but I get accustomed to it afterwards. However, the enemies are tough and there is also a limit on stocking recovery items, so it requires some skills even in Easy difficulty. There is some worth in working to change Daemon based on the boss and battle situations, but I wish they could be changed quickly from the beginning. 7

4th reviewer: The strategic element of inhibiting up to 4 Daemons with unique traits and switching based on the battle situation is worth replaying. Treading through paths like a puzzle while coming and going between the real world and that world is also giving a good accent. The action feels rather good, and the composition – which includes player guidance and all kinds of interface – does not incur stress. There is a whole lot of unfamiliar terms, so that – coupled with the unique world setting – may take some complexity until you can understand them. 8

Nintendo shares eighth installment of "Mr. Taura’s Case Files" for Astral Chain

Feeling catty

The eighth installment of Mr. Taura's Case Files takes a bit of a lighthearted tone by discussing the game's many cats. Hell, I think all these cats being the game are a selling point in and of themselves!

Game Informer Video - Why You Should Be Excited About Astral Chain On The Switch

In this excerpt from The Game Informer Show podcast, Andrew Reiner talks about playing Astral Chain from Platinum Games on the Nintendo Switch and why he's enjoyed what he's played so far...

Astral Chain 'Arrow Legion' gameplay footage

I can hardly wait for Astral Chain. We're just a week away from launch! Platinum games are always ridiculously fun, and this one looks like it's going to continue that tradition. Hopefully it ends up becoming a big hit for Platinum and Nintendo!

Astral Chain devblog update: "The Wide World of UI, Part II"

It's the little details that matter

Platinum Games is back with the second part of their last Astral Chain devblog. This installment continues the deep dive into the game's user interface creation. It's insane how much thought Platinum puts into this stuff, but it really does bring the entire experience up a notch. Check out a bit from the blog below, then click over and read the full piece.

When a cutscene or other transition finishes and the main gameplay screen returns to your TV or console, the HUD elements have to come back in smoothly. That’s where the animations I’m writing about today come on.

The HUD is different from the menu, in that you don’t directly interact with it as a player. But there’s a lot of information that the game needs to show you, so you’ll be seeing the HUD a lot, from the very beginning to the very end. I knew that these animations had to be the best quality I could manage.

I set aside a lot of time to gather references and decide on a design direction for these animations. This is a usual part of the process, of course, but I knew that neglecting it would be a fast track to subpar, unconvincing animations. So I took these initial planning stages particularly seriously for this project.

Full blog here

Nintendo shares seventh installment of "Mr. Taura’s Case Files" for Astral Chain

Beast mode activated

The case files for Astral Chain just keep pouring in! Nintendo and Platinum have released the seventh installment today, which gives a closer look at what the Beast Legion has to offer.

GameSpot Video - Astral Chain: S+ Rank On Ultimate Difficulty Gameplay

Humanity’s last chance against an interdimensional invasion is a special living weapon called the Legion. As a rookie officer in the elite police task force Neuron, you and your Legion will work together to solve cases and save humankind. The ASTRAL CHAIN game gives you full control over two characters at once for thrilling Synergetic Action, courtesy of PlatinumGames. Alternate between several Legion types and skills to save the world your way.

Give a listen to Astral Chain's "main vocal theme"

What do you think?

Nintendo has published the "main vocal theme" for Astral Chain via the video above. This is the English adaptation of the themes, and while I like the song overall, I'm not sure about the singers. I'll have to check out the Japanese version and compare to see how I really feel.

Nintendo puts together a special video feature for Astral Chain from Gamescom 2019

30+ mins with the director

Nintendo may have a live-streaming schedule for Gamescom later this week, but it looks like they took some time to put together a special gameplay segment for Astral Chain before all of that. Not only do we get a look at the game, but commentary from the director as well!

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