- System: Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch, PC
- Publisher: Limited Run Games
- Developer: Game Freak
- Release Date: April 12, 2019
- Rating: T for Teen
- Genre: Platformer, Action
- Players: 1
Who it Caters to
What to Expect
Giga Wrecker Alt. isn’t a hard game to explain. Players assume the role of Reika who has been kidnapped by the Ajeet—a robot army—and was nearly killed by a mysterious woman. Saved by a doctor named Koutaro Kouzuki, Reika now has a new cybernetic arm capable of performing some pretty amazing abilities. Reika—aka the player—can absorb debris from the world around her and use it as a weapon or even create blocks to help her reach various locations. She’ll need these powers as she transverses the machine complex she has been brought to. Players will need to smash enemies, solve various puzzles and even explore numerous locations in order to find the mystery girl and bring the Ajeet down!
First, let’s discuss the platforming element to Giga Wrecker Alt. Due to its machine set up, players will explore areas that scream sci-fi as they jump on metallic platforms and avoid giant spinning blades. Reika will need to rely on her new powers to not only break walls to make makeshift platforms but also to reach areas usually unreachable by her standard jump or movement. These puzzle-like sections are forgiving as players can use a purple beam of energy that allows them to rewind time which in turn resets the area if they maybe break too much of a platform or miss a timed jump. Similar to games like Metroid or Castlevania, Giga Wrecker Alt. has a Metroidvania design that means you might see two routes to go, but one can only truly be explored as you get new powers/skills or find a specific item to progress. Giga Wrecker Alt. as a platformer works almost flawlessly and only suffers from being too easy more often than not.
While Reika will do most of her time running around on her 2D plane, that won’t mean her adventure will be just about timing jumps and making ledges. Players will also encounter the Ajeet, machine baddies that want nothing more than to kill Reika since she’s proven herself a threat. Here’s where we get a bit divided while playing Giga Wrecker Alt. On one hand, combat works adequately during regular enemy fights and some boss encounters. You’ll use your cyborg arm to absorb the environment—just like you do to make platforms—and create balls of wreckage that can either be shot at the enemy like a yoyo or allow for various weapons to be temporarily crafted by Reika. This element works well in Giga Wrecker Alt. until you face some enemies that are either too fast or just heavily dodgy. Giga Wrecker Alt. usually triumphs when combat is slower, but when things speed up, you’ll notice that controls feel a bit too slow to respond to your quick movement and often means you’ll get hit as you try to defeat enemies. It’s not game breaking, but it does make some fights feel unfair and overly annoying.
When you look at both elements of Giga Wrecker Alt. the overall gameplay itself seems really exciting and enjoyable. As you progress in Giga Wrecker Alt., you’ll gain new skills, be able to power up your health and other abilities and gain access to areas that you couldn’t earlier reach. However, Giga Wrecker Alt. can suffer from what all Metroidvania-like games suffer from…repetitiveness. This is especially noticeable when you see the various backdrops or same enemies over and over again. Bosses all have cool anime-like designs that show the greatness of Game Freak’s design department, but the setting itself—due to its machine nature—just feels like it switches color pallets. One minute you’re in a red robotic room and then you’re in an orange one. While the music might change to another great tune—the OST in Giga Wrecker Alt. is amazing—you’ll begin to feel bored as you keep doing the same thing for hours on end. You’ll have fun blowing up machines left and right as well as taking down some really cool bosses, but you’ll also wish that Game Freak threw in a few different locations and some other abilities to keep things from becoming a rinse and repeat cycle for ten or more hours.
Honey's Gameplay Consensus:
- Platforming is tight and puzzle like
- Wonderful Ost
- Fun dialogue and cast of characters to help the story move along
- Smashing enemies with giant debris balls doesn’t ever get old
- Solid art style that shines in still cutscenes and epic moments
- Combat can at times be frustrating due to various enemies weird change from slow to overly fast
- Can be a bit repetitive as you run through semi-lifeless mechanical environments
- Can become overly repetitive