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e3 2016


ReCore's Color-Changing Action On A Hostile Eden
by Matthew Kato on Jun 15, 2016 at 07:07 PM

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Platform Xbox One
Publisher Microsoft Game Studios
Developer Comcept
Rating Teen

ReCore's debut last E3 was brief, and this time around Microsoft and developers Armature (Metroid Prime) and Keiji Inafune's Comcept had plenty more to talk about the third-person action title.

ReCore takes place on Far Eden. As the name implies, this was going to be a wonderful new beginning for humans. However, when heroine Joule Adams awakes from her cryogenic sleep, something's clearly amiss. Far from a paradise, the terraforming process for Far Eden has gone wrong. The planet has been scarred by the process,  and most of the robots already on Far Eden – who were supposed to assist in the process – have gone haywire.

At the outset of the demo, Joule and her robot dog companion Mack, are looking for tracking down a signal core. Cores are an important facet of the game. They can be taken from Corebots, some of which are housed in enemies, while others are friendly to Joule and will help her in combat. Once you have a core from an enemy, you choose to harvest it for loot or resources.

During Joule's search through the demo, she does some light platforming, and her double jump move and fast dash are up to the task. Later in the game, sandstorms transform the landscape, changing the height of the terrain.

When it comes to combat, Joule must switch cores with the d-pad to find the color-coded core that matches the enemy. She also drains her opponents using a charge shot (by holding down the attack button) and calls in companions like Mack to do some damage.

Combat is a spectacle, with damage and XP numbers flying off opponents when they are hit, and the various colors add to the visual drama. Some enemies are even prismatic, which means they switch their colors and attacks as the contest goes on. 

If there's a downside to combat, it's that it's centered around a lock-on system. You can still free-form target enemies, but it's not as effective. In fact, Armature's Mark Pacini says ReCore isn't "an aiming game." The problem becomes when you're confronted with both ground and air foes. Using the lock-on, switching between enemies, and naturally wanting to use the camera can be confusing. It didn't hamper the combat all the time, but it wasn't intuitive when things got hairy.

Both Joule and her companions level up as the game progresses, and there are upgrades and resources to manage as well. However, the developers aren't talking about this aspect of the game yet.

ReCore is out on September 13 in North America, is a cross-buy title between the digital versions on Xbox One and PC, and retails for $39.99.

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