With about a month to go until PlatinumGames’ new IP Astral Chain arrives on Switch, various outlets are getting opportunities to test the game out. Digital Foundry was able to sample the demo with Nintendo of Europe and they’ve provided an extended discussion paired with new gameplay footage. While it’s a solid look at a game that I’m eager to test out myself, more than anything they seek to dispel any ambiguity about the title’s gameplay and structure:

 

 
Some points to highlight include the sense that this is a title that moves itself slightly closer to the RPG genre, likening it to a next step in that direction compared to previous Platinum titles — and a game I desperately want on Switch, NieR: Automata. There are other, various comparisons made. These range from the headquarters-like hub (likened to Deus Ex) and the overall vibe and aesthetic of the game reminding of Burning Rangers.

As far as gameplay goes, they also highlight the investigative side of being on the game world’s police force. It gives the game a mission structure, leading you to accident sights to gather evidence and figure out where to go next. From there you’re able to traverse portals into separate, smaller maps that are likened to Zelda-style dungeons for puzzles and combat along with your Legion. Again, all these comparisons are based on a short demo session, but it’s still an intriguing mix.

As far as performance goes, they note improvements over older Treehouse footage from E3 and highlight some of the accompanying effects to the action. While there was no way to really put it under the microscope, they note the frame rate held well in docked gameplay — though not without some drops. We’ll see if any improvements come between this build and what to expect when Astral Chain arrives on August 30th, but all that’s shown here comes off as promising and only makes me want to get my own hands on the game even more.

 

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Written by Ricky Berg

When he isn’t writing for Nintendo Wire, Ricky’s anticipating the next Kirby, Fire Emblem, or if the stars ever align, Mother 3 to be released. Till then he’ll have the warm comfort of Super Smash Bros. to keep him going.

Ricky Berg