If one emotion could capture the heart of the experience of Babylon’s Fall, the brand new Live-Service game from Square Enix and Platinum games, it might be Sadness, almost as much ast Zenon felt at the outset of your battle with him. There are items to enjoy about Babylon’s Fall, but an array of issues keep your enjoyment levels lower than your growing levels of frustration using the game.
From broken matchmaking to a graphical style that just doesn’t hit the mark as well as it ought to, Babylon’s Fall does not meet expectations from two of the most renowned publishers in the world. Important this way? Discover as we dive deeper in to the issues and also the highlights, in our time with Babylon’s Fall.
When Babylon’s Fall was initially revealed back in 2022, players were treated with what looked to be another Platinum Games classic in the making. Featuring high flying, fast-paced combat, a sweeping orchestral score, and visuals that looked enticing, that is no longer the game that we're receiving treatment to today.
After the mixed reception that Marvel’s Avengers received upon its release, with a plethora of microtransaction riddled costumes, items, and much more, players might have figured that Square Enix may have waited a bit longer before trying that formula again. However, they did repeat, but with a whole lot worse results now.
As you boot into Babylon’s Fall, you're treated with a Square-Enix account log-in, an extra account that is required to experience the sport. While this means that you’ll be able to carry your computer data from PlayStation 4 to PlayStation 5, or the other way around, you’ll also have another account to produce, which can also be confusing. There are two different kinds of Square Enix Accounts: Square Enix Members, and Square Enix Accounts. One of these accounts will give you use of games like Marvel’s Avengers, as well as your other account will grant you use of Final Fantasy XIV. Should you don’t have this second account, you’ll need to create it before you begin playing the game.
Once starting, you’ve treated with a short cutscene that introduces the story to you, as you are a slave that's been given the Gideon’s Coffin, a device which will kill you if you are not a Sentenial, or will grant you otherworldly powers if you are deemed worthy enough. As the game would not be exciting if you were not worth, you're granted Spectral Weapons that float behind you, allowing you to use a large number of attacks to take enemies down.
The story, while passable, is made slightly less enjoyable by the characters that join you on your journey. Paper-thin writing and very laughable voice acting sully your enjoyment, up to now another expletive emerges from the mouth of Gallagher can ruin the emotional impact of the story segment. Thankfully, it comes with an choice to change the voice language to Japanese, that makes it a bit more enjoyable, because the delivery is way better than their English-speaking counterparts.
Let’s Talk Visuals
It’s time for you to address the elephant within the room, however. The visual style of Babylon’s Fall just falls flat. Appearing like a Playstation 3 game that many of the textures didn’t load set for, the 18th Century Oil Painting art style just didn’t translate well. In certain screenshots, it can look stunning, however the game, sadly, doesn't seem like that moving. Blurry textures, jagged edges, and boring dungeon design get this to game visually boring, except for several areas it does truly master.
Armor designs, especially Vanity Items, are a treat to check out. Over-the-top outfits that make your character stand out inside a sea of drab and uninspired worlds, you’ll be looking your best when you’re able to equip these flashy garments, alongside the late-game armor sets. For the first couple of hours, your best bet is to find armor that suits your playstyle, and never care whether it clashes, as you’ll be on your way to improving armor in the future.
As per standard, Platinum Games and Square-Enix did lovingly create a great orchestral soundtrack, one which doesn’t belong in a game such as this. Swooping strings, chants, and much more await you, with ways to keep your pulse-pounding, as well as on the advantage of the seat. Platinum has the best soundtracks in modern games, and this one is no different.
Boss designs are astonishing and show that some love and care entered these fearsome foes. The first boss you face, Zenon, is really a towering menace, with screen-filling attacks that can take you down quickly, and they are great to witness. The effects laid out once they begin and finished their attacks are filled with that Platinum Charm that we have grown to love over the years, with games for example NieR: Automata and Bayonetta.
It’s just a shame that everything in between feels so flat when compared with this.
Buy Your Way To some Better Time
Much such as the previous Live-Service efforts before, Babylon’s Fall is rife with Microtransactions. However, this time, they’re a bit more egregious. As you enter the HQ, or Hub of the game, you’ll be able to visit the mysterious merchant, Pygmalion to buy items with your in-game currency called Conch, or spend real-world money to buy Garaz.
You are tempted from the get-go to start purchasing Garaz, as the first couple of menus that appear are items which is only able to be bought with this particular currency, which wouldn’t be as bad because it sounds if your set of Armor modeled after an in-game character didn’t cost $15 of the hard-earned cash.
The Conch items pale in grandeur compared to the Garaz items, offering fairly plain, drab, and overall not very exciting items. You’ll have the ability to have an early game boost by spending 5,000 Conch and becoming better items, but when you’re tempted quickly of the bat so that you can trounce enemies with exciting armor that provides great stat boosts, something doesn’t feel right.
There is a lot of mentions of the Battle Pass, too. The first is offered free of charge, but following the first Months are done, you’ll be looking at one more $10 per pass. Thankfully, you’ll be able to get some nice items through the free Battle Pass, alleviating a few of the pressure from buying items in the Garaz Shop.
But it shows a little bit of where their intentions lie when after buying a $60 to $70 game, you’re almost immediately granted a chance to spend more money. It’s not a good sign of the way the game is going to be perceived, because it was a large red flag that increased very quickly.
But, is that this acceptable so long as the game plays well? Well, there’s a little more bad news in that regard, too.
Flashy Effects with No Staying Power
If you were entering this game just for Platinum Games’ signature combat feel, a minimum of there’s a glimmer of hope in that regard. While the combat lacks some punch, with most of your attacks feeling just like you are hitting your attacker with a wet pool noodle, the flashy moves you pull off a minimum of feel nice.
You’re granted 4 weapons, which you'll purchase more using Conch or Garaz, or earn using your dungeon crawling efforts. Fighting for your life against hordes of enemies, you’ll be competing not just on your own however with your teammates on scoring the greatest and earning medals after each battle. With Stone being the lowest, and Pure Platinum to be the highest rank you can get, you’ll receive rankings after each battle to demonstrate how good you probably did. It’s unfortunate the combat isn’t all that rewarding, when compared with their previous efforts.
Most encounters can be solved by simple button mashing, with two face buttons, and two shoulder buttons regulating different weapons. Sadly, most enemies that you encounter are melee-sponges, absorbing blow after blow after blow, until they finally are defeated. Not only bosses, however the enemies that you simply encounter in the dungeons function this way, and if you are playing solo, you’ll be punished by not being able to earn as a lot of a rank as you would while playing with friends or random others.
After testing this theory, and performing a dungeon once solo, then again with friends, and again solo with similar playstyle that I did, I consistently ranked higher when playing with other people, because the heart of the game lies in its Multiplayer Functionality. The fatal flaw in this, however, is how you have to access Multiplayer to even get your friends to become listed on. It’s incredibly cumbersome, plus some type of voice chat is almost required, just like you aren’t all in sync with slamming the update button to try to join a Party Quest, someone could get left behind. Addititionally there is no option to have fun with friends that live in other regions, because the game does not allow for cross-server play, that is a regrettable oversight.
There is also hardly any to pointless to understand more about these dark, dank, and boring dungeons, when you are focused on an extremely linear path from Point A to Point B, even though there might be some light platforming that takes place in between these sections, the amount design is equally as memorable as your cast of characters that join in on your adventure.
If you’re thinking about tackling the planet solo, be ready to be punished. If you’re going in with a group of friends, get ready for farmville to be a cakewalk of nonstop button mashing. Things could possibly get hectic on screen, and while it may result in the otherwise dull visuals shine for a moment, you’ll in addition have a hard time looking after where you are. Everything just feels incredibly “grindy”, and takes away from the overall experience a ton.
How Could This Be Fixed?
There is really a glimmer of hope for the future of farmville, however. As it is a Live-Service game, you will find quite a few ways in which the developers of this title could fix many of the issues that currently reside within it.
Updating the quantity of content that the game offers is a superb method to continue pushing farmville towards success, and fixing lots of problems that currently reside within. While Square and Platinum actually have an expansive roadmap, offering more story content, weapons, armor, bosses, etc., the success of the sport finding its audience is going to be type in the continued support of this title.
Changing the Matchmaking facet of this game is going to be a huge element in how many people find continued enjoyment by using it, and adding new areas besides the tired and true linear dungeons that cause an eventual boss fight could be a huge improvement.
A lot of features came half-baked and could have used a bit more amount of time in the proverbial oven, so to speak. As of this writing, they're updating and adding classes, but only have 3 slots available. If you were wanting to try out all the classes hanging around to determine the differences that they offered, you won’t be able to add some new class, as you can’t delete a personality that you have created. They're working on methods to give a new character slot, but in a full-priced game from AAA developers, this was an oversight which should have been caught before release.
While some may benefit from the grind that this game has to offer, the fact that there are so many different issues that plague the game makes this feel, play, and appear worse than many Free-To-Play options, and with a couple of gaming’s juggernauts behind the scenes, this will not be the case in the slightest.
Babylon’s Fall started as something which looked extremely promising, with high octane combat, action, adventure, and more. However, Square-Enix and Platinum Games dropped the ball about this one, as it may have easily used another year’s price of development before coming out like a full release. The murky visuals, bland dungeon design, boring gameplay overshadow the superb boss design along with a killer soundtrack, making this much more of a chore to play and dampening the experience tremendously.
There isn't any way in good faith that this could be recommended like a full-priced title, however in the near future, when they improve upon the many mistakes that are currently in the game, it may be converted to what it originally looked to be. There is no reason that a player should have to grind for 20 hours or more, before finally dealing with experience a bit more variety in the game, and it is a major disappointment in almost every regard.
Babylon’s Fall is available for PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, and PC now.