This was a game I never expected from the makers of Torchlight, I was just expecting another Torchlight game to come from them, but low and behold here we have it a vibrant, atmospheric, stunning designed adventure game. I am going to hold my hand up high here and note that I never played the game when it was first released, so when the game was announced on the Nintendo Switch I bounced at the opportunity. Being a new dad a lot of my time is away from my home PC, and having the option to play anywhere at any time means I was able to play while in work, late at night when the little one was sleeping and when taking a no2.
You are probably wondering why Definitive Edition, what have they improved for this release well here is a list of improvements;
- Improved framerate
- Reset player on fall
- Map UI improvement
- Abilities UI rework
- Added camera pitch control
- HD rumble
- Concept art screen
- Memories screen
- Improved main menu
- Improved pause menu
- Touch input
- Context button prompts
- Store UI rework
- Classic mode
- Costume skin screen improvement
- Collectibles screen improvement
- Improved environment cues
- Plot player progress
- Concept art unlock
The first thing you will notice about the game is the stunning art style, being a huge Zelda fanboy I like it even more as it sort of took me back to my adventure in a franchise I have always played. Then after the opening sequences which sees our main character poisoned, having his arm left arm amputated and seeing the self-sacrifice of a robot that removes his own arm and transplants it on to out character. This new arm is the second thing you will notice, it is huge, but it can do multiple things. Not just punching enemies, but also change the layout of the levels, destroying structures so you can pass and activating ancient machinery. If that was not enough here have a sword and swish away at your enemies with a flurry of attacks. But in all honesty, the fest de la resistance has to be the left arm and the huge amount of upgrades available. It does not matter what you do with it the HD rumble feature built into the switch and used within the game just makes everything feel more intense.
Don’t think you can slash away at enemies blindly they do have some challenge, so keep a watchful eye on your health bar and roll when required, no it is not as bad as Dark Souls where you roll, roll, roll, roll, roll, slash, rinse repeat and don’t forget your shield. The combat is fun and thanks to a diverse variety of enemies the game keep its fresh feeling from start to finish.
As you explore the stunning world, you will use hobs strengths, your mind and skills to solve puzzles that gradually become harder the further into the game you get, well what do you expect easy all the way? Along the way, you will be collecting green orbs, these will allow you to improve your combat skills and new abilities. When I first delved into the game rather late at night, my first playthrough was a bit slow, possibly due to being tired with the little one. My second playthrough rather more awake, I found myself gathering pace, upgrading my character faster, you could say that I experienced the game differently during my second playthrough.
The world is ever-changing thanks to the mechanics in the game, as Hob will drop into the planets lower regions to complete puzzles, in turn, this will alter the world above, opening up new areas giving you the opportunity to move on. Along the way, you will be doing a lot more, like unblocking an area thanks to a water duct, turning on electricity to an area and much more. The world above is sublimely created and moves well from being lush green fields to a barren wasteland, I never got bored of the detail put into the game and the world itself.
While playing the game, I never really noticed this, but on my second playthrough, I sat there thinking, I have not heard any music to the game, only in-game sound effects, like wildlife, mechanical structures moving. I thought wow, the game kept me captivated without a single note, well for me that makes a good game right? I never really got lost in the game, I found myself wandering around exploring, interacting and really just enjoying the experience, the improvements over the original I guess should be well received. Not being one of the lucky ones to play the original I am unsure, but this version of the game seems almost perfect. A few hitches along the way, framerate drops, the game crashed once, other than that, if you like a good adventure game or like a Zelda inspired art style or the game art style in general then you can not go far wrong with Hob.