Review – Resolutiion

Sometimes a game comes along that does things so differently, it’s a bit hard to compare to anything else. Take this new game, Resolutiion from Monolith of Minds, for instance. It has similarities to other games, like the same top down 2D view as games like Undertale and the same combat style as a game like the original Zelda. It even has an upgrade system more similar to something like Metroid or Gato Roboto. Yet, it still does things differently. Allow me to explain.

When you start Resolutiion, there’s little to no understanding of what the goal is. You’re thrust into a world run by AI and there doesn’t seem to be any humans around at all. The world of Resolutiion is more or less post-apocalyptic. One of the first things you’ll learn is everything can be killed. Whether or not it actually poses any threat to you, you can kill it. Enemies will stay dead as well. If you enter a room, kill two out of the ten enemies hanging around and get killed yourself, when you return those two enemies remain dead. If you have to backtrack as all, regardless of how late into the game, they will still be dead. It gives a reason to do a genocide run, it’ll make the game easier in ways.¬†

20200526_170301

Brutality at its finest 

While you can kill everything, it’s nowhere near safe to say you should kill everything. The world is inhabited by plenty of friendly characters who will try to help explain what’s happening, and what maybe you should keep an eye out for. The game’s lore is obscure though, hidden behind vague messages. If you want to understand what’s happening, you’ll have to weed through what messages actually have anything to do with the story and which ones are just nonsense. It’s very similar to something like Dark Souls in this sense. If you just don’t care about the story, you’ll figure out absolutely nothing. You can go through the entire game without the faintest clue of what is happening.

20200526_170307

What’s more ironic than a gun named “Calmer”?

With Resolutiion being a top down pixel art style game, things need to be distinguishable. This is where that Resolutiion excels. Enemies are noticeable, even ones that may be hidden or obscured within the world. For instance, there is a desert area with enemies that will hide in the sand. While hidden in the sand, they’re a slightly different shade of brown and you can see their heads poking out, watching. If you look for them, you can see them. If you don’t, surprise! Speaking of the desert, watch out for the monster lurking in the sand. The first time you come across this area, you’ll be chased by a giant cat that’s concealed under the sand and it’s mildly terrifying.

20200526_170305

Bosses may be infrequent, but they can be tough.

So enemies are noticeable, but are new areas, significant items, or characters distinguishable as well? Of course they are. One thing that I really enjoyed about Resolutiion is the use of shapes and colours. Anything you can interact with, whether it’s a character you can talk to, something you can examine, or an item you can pick up, will have a blue hollow hexagon under it. If you stand inside the hexagon, it’ll fill out to be solid and will automatically interact. When you receive certain abilities, shapes will be used to determine where to use those as well. For example, red squares indicate somewhere that one of your abilities can make a path. Save areas are another one, with lines on the ground that are similar to a microchip. It’s a strange design in the middle of the floor, but you’ll certainly know it’s there.

20200526_170303

Save, heal up, murder more.

If you’re interested in lore and games that don’t simply spoon feed things to you, Resolutiion is certainly a game for you. This is a game that will keep its secrets tucked away, one that will give you only an idea of what to do next, and leave you to figure out why and how. Resolutiion doesn’t hand anything out. If you don’t explore everything and everywhere, there’s a lot to be missed in this big desolate world. To truly understand what’s going on, this is a game that will warrant multiple playthroughs as well. Resolutiion is tough, but fair. A game that should be enjoyed by anyone who likes to discover a story and piece together lore as opposed to something streamlined and linear like many titles are.

 

Graphics: 9.0

Where some 2D games of this style fall flat, Resolutiion sores far above all else in keeping things neat and tidy in such a chaotic world.

Gameplay: 8.0

With fairly similar combat mechanics to some other popular games of the style, Resolutiion‘s true shine is in the upgrades you’ll find along the way and the puzzles you’ll solve with them.

Sound: 7.5

Resolutiion‘s soundtrack is about as mixed as it’s world. While the music matches the areas, like a peaceful and tranquil forest or a harsh desert, there’s not much that truly stands out from other games.

Fun Factor: 9.0

Resolutiion exceeded all expectations in story and gameplay. This is a game that won’t spoon-feed you anything and unless you’re willing to get lost and confused, this certainly isn’t a game for the casual player.

Final Verdict: 8.5

Resolutiion is available now on Nintendo Switch and PC.

Reviewed on Nintendo Switch.

A copy of Resolutiion was provided by the publisher.