One part former Metroid Prime developers, one part Comcept -- Recore is a game that's attracted a lot of divisive attention. Most of E3 2016 has been a series of unreasonable lines, but I braved Recore after Zelda, so the wait didn't feel too overwhelming in comparison.
While I was in line, we received instructions as to how to control things, and influence the flow of battle during the demo. It was a lot to take in. If you handled things in the proper way, almost line a rhythmic pattern, you were going to have a much easier time. There were lock-on techniques, charge shots, pet-companions to briefly summon, multiple explosions, and multiple colors of enemies to consider (you could easily switch between the colors of your shots with the d-pad).
The third-person shooter isn't necessarily my genre of choice, but I adapted pretty quickly. Some enemies were tougher to handle than others, but it seems like -- despite the complexity of how things were relayed to us -- it should feel natural to seasoned shooter-folk, and easy enough to understand (with practice) for everyone else. The systems in place seem to be one part shooter, one part RPG. Enemies took numbered damage (that increases if you shoot ”em with the right color, or if you stack combo hits properly -- Mighty No. 9, anyone?), and I earned experience with every kill.
Enemies themselves looked intimidating, but weren't particularly varied. They're the kinds of things you expect in games like these -- creatures that resembled bats and went down fairly easily, to creatures that ignited a burst of flames from themselves (that killed me a few times). Here's
Ultimately, it seems like Recore“s story and sense of character are going to be what set it apart from its contemporaries. The game's debut trailer showed the potential for a memorable tale, but I really couldn“t tell you if that promise will lead to praise later on. The demo places you in some story-driven context, but we weren“t really given any idea of what the basic plot was while playing.
From the surface level I experienced on the show floor, it seems like a very tightly designed game. But it won't reinvent the wheel like Metroid Prime did at the time, nor does it seem to take any giant leaps forward for the genre.
If you're super hyped for Recore -- I figure you should stay that way. It's competent in theory and in practice. But I'll need to see more than just gameplay and a glimpse of story before I can decide if it shines among a reasonably populated genre.
Recore will be available on anything and everything Microsoft supports, as part of the Xbox Anywhere program. It“ll release this September, too. We“ll offer more information as it comes.