Elliot Quest is the newest game to take on the retro platformer. This one however pulls inspiration from games like Legend of Zelda II and makes it stand out from the rest. Ansimuz Games and PlayEveryWhere the minds behind this game could have made this a fantastic game but how frustratingly unfriendly the game was to players stopped that.
Gameplay and Story 3/10
While the gameplay itself is fun with time and after getting a number of unique abilities to help to transverse the world you are. However the key words there are "in time". The game starts off with telling you nothing about their leveling system, the story, or what anything does. Turns out you get a better description of what's going on from the Xbox store game description. Now I understand not hand holding and making your players figure out things for themselves like in games like Dark souls but even then I get to pick my class and the first area tells me what certain items do and prepares me for the rest of the game. Here however the story is doled out in very small sections across the first 5-6 hours of gameplay, it's just too slow to keep players interested.
Now as far as the gameplay goes once again we have a problem with no direction and no explanations. One example of this is there leveling system, which is hidden in the start menu. There are 5 different attributes you can level up a total of 5 times each strength makes your shots fly farther and eventually unlocks a Mega-Man type charge shot, wisdom increases MP gain, agility improves firing rate, vitality increases health gain, and accuracy adds critical hit effects. Now that charged shot is by far the best ability in the game power wise and will save your life multiple times against bosses. But the only way you learn about is by leveling up strength twice and then it tells you that you will get a charge shot with the next level up in that field. Also there is 4 different controller schemes you can use: A, B, C, or D. Now the game doesn't tell you what the buttons do or how the schemes differ so it's pretty much useless.
Although the gameplay is in itself fun...well after a couple of hours, the lack of telling the player anything is why the score is so low here.
Now it isn't amazing graphics as it is a retro game but for being a retro game there are very good. The world is colorful and diverse in looks. By that I mean when you travel through a level it's not the same look and it feels like you are getting somewhere. The enemies have a unique look and it does feel like time was put into the artwork of the entire project. Flashbacks have a different style and feel, bosses look like they belong in the levels they are found, and you feel immersed in the world no matter how much you are frustrated at the gameplay.
When I first began this game I had just finished an episode of Netflix. Now I keep my volume about 10-15 clicks higher than games because it seems to be quieter. So when I started this game my TV was pretty loud....for any game other then this. I couldn't hear any music, sound, or sound effect and once again had to traverse my way to the options and turn up the music and sound to max just to hear what was going on in the background. After all of that the music and sound was unimpressive. When you were in a forest or temple you had your generic wilderness and temple music, there was absolutely no voice acting, and no sound effects when killing enemies. The game comes up short in this category and doesn't really let get over it. There's no memorable number from this game and with the lack of sound is why this score is so low.
Now this isn't no Dark Souls or Mega-man X6 difficulty but the lack of handholding and any sense of direction is what makes this game so hard. The bosses are much more difficult without the charge shot, which if you don't get you will die repeatedly on just the first boss. It just doesn't do a good job separation the player from being frustrated with the game mechanics and makes their game that much harder.
This game has 22 achievements which are bosses, collectables, and the three different endings. So you will have to play though the game a total of three times collecting everything so you will be looking at about a 40-50 hours to get all of the achievements. All in all the achievements are very generic basically "Find all the stuff and complete our game trice!"
Elliot Quest although as pretty and colorful it just comes up short. The lack of direction and story leaves most players frustrated and may not even continue on their journey. Sadly this retro game just doesn't have what it takes to make it in the market.