Anima: Gate Of Memories- The Nameless Chronicles – Xbox One Review

Anima: Gate of Memories – The Nameless Chronicles is not only one of the longest titles for a video game around, it is also a third person action RPG set in the fictional world of Gaia. This is a place cursed by demons after it had been ravaged by a great war.

You play as the Nameless; a shadowy figure who is immortal and who’s curse is that he has been left to walk the earth until the end of time. Upon loading up the game the first thing that we noticed was how sensitive the look mechanic is. The tiniest touch on the right stick can mean you are looking straight into the ground or into the sky. We turned the sensitivity right down but this still made little difference. This made moving through the world a little tricky until we got more of a hang on how to control it. It also had a few other knock on consequences that we will discuss later on.

The world is dark in most places and the level designs are basic but also incredibly atmospheric. The look makes us feel like this is a low rent Dark Souls, the look is similar, just without the polish. Something that also adds to the atmosphere is the excellent soundtrack that this game has. The music changes the mood at just the right moment and helps a lot to immerse you in the world.

There is something that does take you out of this immersion quite dramatically though and that is the voice acting. It would be wrong to say that the acting is flat, the problem is more that the emphasis on the words seem to be in the wrong place. To go along with the dialogue you get text boxes at the bottom of the screen that you have to move along by pressing A. This does nothing but break up the flow of the dialogue.

The combat in Anima: Gate of Memories- The Nameless Chronicles is challenging and is made even more so by the sensitivity of the look mechanic. Although you can lock onto enemies by pressing in the right stick it is still incredibly easy to lose where enemies are in the arena of battle. Multiple enemies also spawn in at different times so it is quite easy to find yourself getting hit by enemies that you didn’t even know were there.

As in a lot of RPG’s there is a skill tree that is deep and rewarding. Each time you level up then you earn skill points which can be invested in the tree. Early on in the game the choices of where you spend these points is very limited due to there been a level lock on a lot of the skills but as you get to a higher level then you have some serious choices to make and we found ourselves torn on where to spend our points at several points.

Even though this is an RPG it could also be called a puzzle game. To advance through the world you will have a lot of puzzles to solve. None of these are too challenging but there are several steps that you will need to undertake to get through them. An example of the kind of puzzles you can expect is to have to solve riddles of a sort to work out what pillars to activate to open a certain door.

In Anima: Gate of Memories- The Nameless Chronicles the storytelling is solid enough but it also just follows the path of many RPG’s out there. The general gist of most parts of the story is that you must go get something to unlock something and then repeat that several times. There are however a few interesting twists in the story which do give it a slightly compelling feeling as you want to find out whats going to happen to certain characters.

One of the biggest issues that we had with the game was navigation. Sometimes it can be difficult to know where you are supposed to be going. This, on the one hand leads to a lot of exploration but it does get a little annoying when you find yourself back tracking for the third or fourth time because you have gone the wrong way.

As you travel through the world you find artifacts that will help you with your quest. Some of these will be weapons, others are elements that you can equip in certain slots in your inventory and these improve your stats. At first it didn’t really feel like these were making much of a difference but then we started to find a few things that really did make a difference and then we started to feel tough. Of course then you come across the next level of enemies and this toughness is knocked right out of you.

The third person view isn’t the only kind of view that you get in Anima: Gate of Memories- The Nameless Chronicles. Sometimes the view changes to a side on one and there are some platforming elements that you need to complete. These were actually some of the most fun parts of the game because you didn’t have to deal with the problems relating to the right stick look mechanic issues. There was also a couple of sections where we were given a top down view which mixed things up a bit.

We could see what Anima: Gate of Memories- The Nameless Chronicles was trying to do but unfortunately it was let down by a few mechanical issues.

Anima: Gate of Memories – The Nameless Chronicles is available to download from the Xbox Store, priced at £15.99.

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