Developer: Monolith of Minds
Release Date: May 28, 2020
Reviewed On: PC
One look at Resolutiion and indie action fans will be reminded of Hyper Light Drifter. Well, I’ve never personally played that game, so Resolutiion was a fairly original experience for me. Yes, I see the similarities, but disregarding a game on similarities alone might have you miss out on an otherwise good time. Outside of its action elements, Resolutiion also gives us a narrative that sends you down a rabbit hole of continually questioning your actions.
Resolutiion has players assume the role of an amnesiac assassin who finds himself at the bidding of a curious AI named Alibii. After the two teams up, Alibii leads the player to multiple destinations in order to gain knowledge of the world as well as find ways to remind the player of who they are. Things begin to get a little weird as you speak with NPCs and explore the strange environments.
Themes that the game focuses on the idea of blind faith and doing whatever it takes to get what you want. There were times where I didn’t want to kill specific targets, or I was unsure of the integrity of the mission objective. You quickly question who’s pulling the strings and whether or not you are the one who is in control. Two sides seem to draw on the player as they uncover more of the story. This all amounts to a narrative that is rather gripping through most of the game.
The tone is rather dark, but the story is written with an added dose of humor and sarcasm that makes interacting with the world charming. Following the assassin down this path of realization and discovering the role you play in this strange setting is the game’s strongest feature and sets it apart from similar action-adventure titles.
Combat in Resolutiion is straight forward as the assassin’s first actions are a simple melee attack that you will continuously use throughout the game. As you probably could have guessed, there are upgrades available that provide new attacks and abilities. Most of these actions require the use of what I assume is MP, which depletes rather quickly and has a slow recharge. Balancing MP is crucial in conflicts as you’ll need to get away swiftly or launch an attack from a distance.
The abilities in the game are rather basic, but they tie into navigating the environment, so they have their uses. The only issue is that whether you are fighting or exploring, you’ll feel as though you’ve played this game before. Given that I haven’t played what is regarded as its most significant influence, I still felt like mechanics, combat, and navigation was a bit too familiar.
The being said, combat is a hell of a good time. Taking out a group of enemies and avoiding near-death is exhilarating as each encounter has some kind of challenging element to it. Enemies can launch surprise attacks, drug you, and shoot projectiles, and all you can do is avoid it or do your best to take them down. There’s a good amount of enemy designs that each have their own attack patterns. Sure, things get challenging, but if you die, you only go back to the nearest checkpoint, and any enemies you’ve defeated stay dead, which is pretty nice of the developer.
Bosses, on the other hand, don’t go down so quickly and will generally put your skills to the test. Each of the more substantial bosses are spun into the game’s narrative, which makes fighting them more of an event than just a random brawl. Given that you aren’t really sure which side you’re on, the fights have a heavier weight to them.
Resolutiion wears its pixel action-adventure badge proudly as explorable environments and animations are beautiful. Direction becomes an issue during some portions of adventure, but the rollout of new abilities and areas came naturally, and I didn’t get lost as many times as I thought I would have. If you do end up going the wrong way, the game will quickly block you with some element that you’ll need an ability for, so there’s very little guesswork required when finding your way around.
The soundtrack only fuels the intense action awaiting the player. It seems to speed up and slow down as you progress and mimics your actions during an encounter. Each area is full of unique sounds and memorable tracks. However, I would have liked there to be a better indicator as to when I was causing damage to bosses. Sometimes I just never knew if my attacks were connecting or not, and then the enemy would die, so I guess I was doing something.
Resolutiion is an engaging and fun action-adventure that delivers an enjoyable experience in the genre. From the very beginning, you’ll feel as if you’ve played it all before, and this is just more of the same. However, it ends up setting itself apart through its clever environments, progression system, and narrative, which was enough to keep me engaged throughout the entire adventure.
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