Publishers: Microids, BiliBili
Platforms: PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 (revised), PC, Switch
Release date: Available now
Price: $39.99 – Available here
When it comes to a Metroidvania-style game, it can be hard to stand out from the crowd. What helps though is a unique setting and designs and TiGames’ FIST forged in the Shadow Torch has that in spades. Set in a futuristic dystopia where animals fight under the rule of an oppressive automaton force, there’s a lot of potential to be found in FIST but did this game manage to capitalize on that framework and deliver an engaging experience?
The land of Torch City and its furtizens have suffered under the rule of the Legion forces ever since they were defeated in a war six years prior to the events of the game. Despite their best efforts at the time, the resistance forces are fallen and Rayton, one of those veteran fighters who survived, did his best to keep a low profile in the city. However, everything changes when this bunny’s best friend is arrested on suspicion of being a rebel and dragged into the prison tower from which few return. With a giant metal fist redesigned from his previous warbot, it’s time to fight against the Legion and save his friend, but there’s a lot more going on between the city’s different factions that can change everything for these furtizens. .
While the overall scenario of FIST may not be the most original, it features an incredible amount of world-building and great characters to interact with along the way. Players will encounter many furtizen allies who are willing to help Rayton in some way and each of them has bits of dialogue and additional world information to reveal as players progress. in-game. Even while exploring new areas, players will be treated to small character scenes talking about an upcoming boss or current location information. It’s also nice to note that there are also various journals to collect throughout the game that provide additional backstory and world details that really help make FISTThe atmospheric world comes to life.
In FIST players will be treated to a Metroidvania world as many would expect with a vast world to roam, limited only by the upgrades players have obtained throughout the story. Players will always have an objective marker to go to, but it’s entirely possible, once players get a few upgrades, to unlock additional doors or break through hidden walls that reveal new paths and paths. unlockables that help enhance what Rayton is capable of. These upgrades come in the form of expected things such as double jumps, an extra dash, a few new main weapons, and more.
In combat, players will use a tightly tuned combat system to take down Legion forces using combination light and heavy attacks with their initial fist, as well as grabbing and throwing enemies into each other for damage. spectacular. As players defeat their enemies, they earn cash which can be used to purchase various skill upgrades that unlock additional combo chains and powerful attacks to really bring extended combos into battle. Variety comes from the eventual weapons that players will also get with a giant drill weapon that is a little slower but capable of chaining together multiple powerful hits, sucking enemies into a rotating blade or blasting them to create distance, and even a pair of electric weapons. whips that offer fast combo strikes but deal less damage overall. Players will be able to make good use of each of these weapons, all of which can unlock new fist-like moves, and while it’s easy to find yourself liking a certain weapon over others, keeping things mixed up is the best way forward.
This is because the Legion forces that players will be up against will be quite difficult to fight as they come in several different types and have different fighting styles that keep players on their toes. That being said, it’s worth noting that through leveling up and learning the best way to chain combos together, reactive combat is pretty amazing when taking down those enemies, especially when players need to take down several types at once. Unfortunately, it’s worth noting that often the game’s way of dealing with the toughest encounters is simply to throw waves of enemies at the player in ever-increasing numbers, causing some fights to drag on longer than normal. ‘they shouldn’t in certain areas and can lead to cheap deaths due to the speed. the Legion’s enemies attack one after another.
Boss fights are much more polished in nature and allow players to take on these powerful foes using the best of their abilities. While most bosses can be defeated in battle, there are also a number of gadgets players can use to their advantage as well, a few of which can be discovered before the boss fight, making most of the encounters that are as fun as they are stimulating. Alongside the combat there is also the inclusion of some pretty poor stealth type sequences which limit what players can do and although these sections are rather short overall they take away most of what makes FIST fun.
It should be noted that when FIST Originally launched, it didn’t offer any difficulty options and it can be pretty clear that the game is quite punishing at times while battling enemies and navigating through puzzles. This is especially the case for some boss fights that feature unique second stages or twists that pit an already weakened player against a new health bar. Luckily for those who don’t want to punish themselves or just need a little help in certain areas, TiGames has since patched the game to offer Easy difficulty alongside the default Normal mode. Players can choose to swap difficulties at any time during gameplay and can use the easier difficulty to clear an area they were completely stuck in before or just play through the game and enjoy it a bit more as it can still be a bit difficult even on easy.
Visuals and audio
The amount of detail put into almost every aspect of the world in FIST is quite shocking as almost every area players explore has a large amount of polish on everything players see in the front while the backgrounds in most areas are very detailed to give the world a more lived and detailed. The character designs are also well done, with the furry furtizens having high quality textures and the robotic enemies that players face have a solid variety between them, especially when it comes to the designs of most bosses. It’s worth noting that combat also runs smoothly with no signs of slowing down or glitching, even when defeating multiple enemies and using flashier finishing moves on weakened enemies.
voice work in FIST is incredibly well handled with the cast seeming perfectly suited to the world, including the enemies who talk quite often as players explore. When it comes to the game’s soundtrack, gamers will find themselves in for a real treat as the title offers a great blend of electric rock to help intensify the action while also offering plenty of darker tracks to keep gamers focused during some of the toughest puzzle/platforming. sections.
With tight fights that can be as challenging and rewarding as players want thanks to the freshly patched addition of an easier difficulty mode FIST forged in the Shadow Torch tells a fairly anticipated story set in an incredible atmospheric world with many interesting characters and lore to discover while exploring a solidly designed map with awesome Metroidvania-style progression mechanics. As such FIST forged in the Shadow Torch not only proves memorable thanks to its great designs, but also its depth of gameplay, making it a great entry for those looking for a top-notch Metroidvania.
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