Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity on Swap

After being completely enthralled by Breath of the Wild when it first launched for the Swap, I used to be looking forward to extra Zelda content material on Nintendo’s new hybrid console. The Hyperlink’s Awakening remake was first rate sufficient, however not fairly what I used to be searching for. The Wii U Hyrule Warriors sport was much more of a far cry from what I needed, and whereas I loved my time with it, I shortly misplaced curiosity. So when Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity obtained introduced, I used to be skeptical.

Extra musou-style gameplay the place you’d should grind ranges and cash in between chunks of missions? It didn’t sound all that promising. However in sinking tens of hours into Age of Calamity, I lastly determine what I used to be searching for: extra Breath of the Wild content material. Something that might permit me to spend extra time on this wealthy world.

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity serves as a prequel to the superb Breath of the Wild. It follows the story of Zelda and Hyperlink earlier than their powers had woke up, and likewise exhibits us how the 4 champions got here to develop into pilots of the highly effective Divine Beasts.

New characters and villains get launched, and gamers can even be accompanied by a brand new tiny Guardian that takes on a central function in the primary thriller of the sport.

To be completely frank, the story in Age of Calamity isn’t notably partaking. I’d felt a lot the identical method in regards to the story in Breath of the Wild as properly, however what Nintendo’s achieved so properly with these video games is how its characters are offered.

The 4 champions solely made transient appearances in Breath of the Wild, adopted by a extra in depth look into their lives with the Champions’ Ballad DLC, however Age of Calamity is totally centered round them. That’s the very best a part of this sport.

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity Evaluate – Hyperlink to the Previous 1
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity Evaluate – Hyperlink to the Previous 6

Revali, who continues to be my favourite champion, is unbearably smug and unbearable. However he’s complemented properly by the easygoing Daruk, who’s by no means afraid to knock him down a peg every time he turns into an excessive amount of of a diva. Urbosa continues to play the function of the mature mentor to Zelda, whereas Mipha stays shy and soft-spoken, eternally attempting to cover her not-so-secret crush on Hyperlink, who can’t cease shoving meals in his mouth.

Extra characters be part of the primary solid, together with Impa, and even probably my favourite NPC from Breath of the Wild: the maraca-shaking Hestu himself. The most important power of Age of Calamity, then, is the sheer liveliness of the primary solid.

Whereas Breath of the Wild thrived within the underlying loneliness of Hyperlink’s journey to save lots of Zelda in Hyrule Fort, Age of Calamity feels extra like a standard JRPG with characters taking part in off one another’s quirks and personalities.

It’s enjoyable, it’s cute, and whereas the story by no means fairly manages to impress me in any significant method, I needed to maintain going.

Story parts apart, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity serves up its gameplay mechanics and methods in droves. Like most musou-style video games as of late, you don’t have to fret about there being a dearth in content material with this one.

There’s a lot to do exterior of the primary story, so many retailers to unlock, assets to farm, and characters and weapons to stage up, that it’s straightforward to really feel overwhelmed within the first few hours.

The fundamental fight itself is just about what you’d anticipate: hit Y for a light-weight assault, hit X for a robust assault. When a bit of bar fills up within the prime left nook, hit A for a particular AoE assault. Customary musou-style stuff, proper? Sure, till the sport begins hitting you with the additional bells and whistles to make this really feel extra like Breath of the Wild.

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity Evaluate – Hyperlink to the Previous 2
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity Evaluate – Hyperlink to the Previous 7

Some acquainted mechanics make a return right here, together with the power to dodge an assault at simply the correct second so you possibly can execute a flurry rush to interrupt an enemy’s protect, and help you follow-up with a robust assault. All characters even have entry to a paraglider and Sheikah Slate powers, which suggests you should use Stasis, Cryonis, Bombs, and Magnesis in fight.

All of those additional skills are supposed to serve the identical goal: breaking the enemy’s protect so you should use a weak level smash to deal an insane quantity of injury. All through my time with Age of Calamity, I discovered that I used to be method much less reliant on simply spamming the identical combos again and again like I might with different musou-style video games, and was as a substitute attempting to be a bit of extra tactical by dodging assaults and ready for openings so I might hit them with that weak level smash.

You’ll nonetheless be spamming your method by means of hordes of moblins and different weaker enemies in fact, however the captains and executives require you to be a bit of extra cautious, which is a very nice change of tempo. I don’t assume I’ve ever loved the fight in a musou-style sport as a lot as I’ve Age of Calamity’s.

It actually helps that all the characters really feel extraordinarily distinctive and distinct as properly. Hyperlink performs like a daily swordsman, making him the right newbie character to start out with. However the remainder of the solid feels very completely different.

Zelda makes use of her Sheikah Slate to battle, and her assaults are sometimes ranged and assorted. She will be able to additionally activate bombs and ice blocks with the correct combos to deal plenty of AoE harm. Revali is fast on his ft and his combos usually finish with him flying up within the air to unleash a volley of arrows at his enemies, whereas Urbosa can retailer lightning in her sword and unleash it in her sturdy assaults.

Hestu… properly, Hestu does his personal factor with the maracas and might summon Koroks to assist him in battle. In the event you cherished the “YAHAHA!” sound results from Breath of the Wild, you’ll love taking part in as Hestu. I adore it, and I can’t get sufficient of it.

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity Evaluate – Hyperlink to the Previous 3
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity Evaluate – Hyperlink to the Previous 8

Other than attending to know the champions themselves, you’ll additionally lastly have the prospect to pilot the Divine Beasts. Some story missions job you with eliminating massive quantities of enemies or reaching a goal space whereas piloting a Divine Beast, and these might be performed with movement controls as properly.

These missions are… okay. They function a pleasant break from the same old hack-and-slash affairs however shifting the Beasts themselves all the time feels clunky, which is sensible contemplating you’re in an enormous ass machine, but it surely’s simply not as enjoyable as zipping round a map, reducing up enemies like a badass.

Outdoors of the story missions, you’ll have problem missions to do, that are nice for leveling up your characters and getting cash and supplies. These are shorter missions with particular circumstances like closing dates, utilizing particular weapon varieties, killing a sure variety of enemies, or clearing a mission with out getting hit as soon as.

Assets are gained from mission completion or simply basic exploration in a stage, and they are often turned in underneath the Quests tab of your menu. These quests reward you with longer combo strings for particular person characters, new retailers and providers, and beauty objects for Hyperlink.

As a result of most of your precise character development is tied to quest completion, that’s a robust incentive to maintain shopping for and farming for supplies to complete up these quests.

The quests are additionally divided up by area, very similar to in Breath of the Wild, and finishing sufficient quests in a particular area will stage it up, rewarding you with an excellent larger bounty of supplies to place in the direction of different quests. It’s an especially compelling loop that retains me coming again.

It’s extremely satisfying to see so many orange icons on my map flip blue as I full extra quests, get extra supplies, and strengthen my characters even additional.

There are recipes to gather, which allow you to prepare dinner meals for expertise boosts and different bonuses in your missions, together with a reasonably primary weapon fusion system, which helps you to strengthen your favourite weapons and add some new perks to them as properly.

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is rather a lot to soak up. There are such a lot of methods in play right here, however in some way all of them come collectively to kind a stable, cohesive expertise that makes this sport so rattling laborious to place down. Throw in a solid of extraordinarily likeable characters, and set it within the wealthy world of Breath of the Wild, and also you get among the best musou-style video games that Koei Tecmo and Omega Drive have ever put out. In the event you simply need extra Breath of the Wild content material, don’t go up on this one.

Evaluate Block

Twinfinite Editors Choice Award

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity

Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity Critic Review
Reviewer: Zhiqing Wan | Award: Editor’s Alternative | Copy supplied by Writer.

Execs

  • Fight is way more tactical than you would possibly anticipate, and feels a bit much less spammy than your typical musou-style sport.
  • The characters are completely charming and likeable.
  • The quests system gives a compelling gameplay loop that makes it laborious to place down.

Cons

  • The story is simply alright.
  • I might do with out the Divine Beast missions.
  • The mission construction remains to be what you’d anticipate from a musou-style sport: kill 1000’s of enemies, seize outposts, and so on.
Launch Date
November 20, 2020
Developer
Koei Tecmo, Omega Drive
Writer
Nintendo
Consoles
Swap

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