Review: AereA – Deluxe Edition (PS4)

Review: AereA - Deluxe Edition (PS4)

Formats:

  • PlayStation 4
  • Xbox One
  • PC, Mac, Linux

Format/Hardware Used:

  • PSN Download
  • PS4 Pro
  • HDTV

Extras:

  • DualShock 4 Required (1)
  • Move None
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Title: AereA – Deluxe Edition
Format: Blu-ray Disc / PSN (3.5 GB) Soundtrack (130 MB)
Release Date: June 30, 2017
Publisher: SOEDESCO
Developer: Triangle Studios
Original MSRP:
Deluxe Edition:
$59.99 (US), €59.99 (EU), £54.99 (UK)
Standard Edition:
$39.99 (US), €39.99 (EU), £34.99 (UK)
ESRB Rating: E10+
PEGI: 7 (EU), 12 (UK)
A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.
PS Nation Review Policy

Gameplay:
You can play in a local co-op game with up to four other players but I will only comment on the single player experience for now.

AereA is a family friendly music themed action RPG that tasks you with the recovery of some important magical instruments.

After a few missions, you will soon see the laborious pattern that is at the heart of this game.

I won’t even really touch on the confusing and almost pointless items or the inaccurate shooting, as they pale in comparison to the monotony of the entire game.

Kill some baddies, pull a metronome lever, go through a door. Repeat until you finally reach a boss. Travel to a new area where you kill some different baddies, pull a metronome lever, go through a slightly different door. Repeat until you reach a different boss.

I am being a bit unfair. There are some mundane side quests to complete that bring a modicum of variety to the proceedings such as, collecting a certain amount of flowers, or killing a set amount of a particular enemy while revisiting the same locations that you had just dragged yourself through.

I have encountered a bug that makes my character unable to attack, aside from their special move. There is no rhyme or reason to this and on a couple of occasions, I have been able to get back to normal by accessing the touch pad quest menu and then returning to the game.

Reloading sorts out the above problem should the simple touch pad solution fail but that does not help matters when you have been trudging through a level for the past ten minutes or you’re halfway through a boss fight. Which brings me to the nicest part of the game.

… improve a few basic attributes that feel meaningless during the game …
Each boss is designed around an instrument which also features predominantly in the music when you fight it. Each one has a distinct attack pattern that isn’t overly complex and usually easy enough to overcome in the first attempt.

The level design is embarrassing at times, with pointless mud puddles that slow your party down for no reason. A few traps that you can easily walk around and confusing layouts that bewilder many young players.

I sadly gave up on AreaA after what seemed like an eternity of boring missions and dull side quests. There isn’t even a decent weapon upgrade system or fun collectibles to find, you just get more powerful as you play and improve a few basic attributes that feel meaningless during the game.

Visuals:
The Concert Hall, which serves as a home base, looks nice but you will grow weary of traipsing around it just to get the next mission. The characters and their instrument weapons are quite detailed and look nice, but every person in the game has hair covering their eyes. It’s a very odd sight to behold.

The levels are pretty to look at but the repetition is quickly apparent and for a game that prides itself on revisiting the same areas several times over, I quickly become tired of the same scenery repeated at every turn.

Audio:
The music is excellent and it’s easily the best part of the game. It might not be to everyone’s tastes but I enjoyed it and if it weren’t for the monotony of the game, I would have liked to have seen and heard the rest of the boss encounters.

… The bugs and monotony are too frequent …
Online/Multiplayer:
You can have a local co-op game with four players, but the game is not drop-in or out so you will have to make sure you have the same players with you each time you want to load that particular save.

The screen does not pan out or split so everyone will have to stick together and make sure no one gets caught on some scenery or wants to go a different way. How I long for the Diablo teleportation gameplay mechanic.

Conclusion:
The bugs and monotony are too frequent for my liking. AereA has some great music that I can thankfully enjoy because of the lovely soundtrack that came with the Deluxe Edition.

Some of you might have more of a tolerance for the banality of this game and enjoy the beauty of the music and graphics regardless of the visual repetition. If so, you might find some fun here.

Score:
6.0

* All screenshots used in this review were taken directly from the game using the Share functionality on the PlayStation 4.

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