Aeon Drive Overview (Change eShop)

Speedrunning has been an integral a part of the gaming neighborhood for many years. Individuals would possibly lean on glitches or exploits to ‘break’ a sport, however typically it’s merely a case of studying the mechanics, inside and outside, to nail down probably the most environment friendly route from A to B. Aeon Drive is all about speedrunning; that’s its hook, and it is a good one.

Happening throughout the cyberpunk setting of ‘Neo Barcelona’, the sport stars Jackelyne, an area ranger who’s on a determined race by means of the town to search out the drive cores to repair her ship. Armed with a sword and teleportation dagger, it’s essential to information Jackelyne by means of an unlimited number of ranges, all of which sport differing routes with their very own benefits and drawbacks.

Racing by means of the degrees is kind of sufficient as it’s, however the sport instantly encourages you to maneuver as rapidly as potential by implementing a 30-second timer in every degree. If the timer reaches zero, then it’s sport over and also you’ll want to begin over (an insignificant inconvenience because of the small scale of the degrees and the zippy loading speeds). Fortunately, to offset the countdown, you’ll be able to decide up egg timers scattered all through the degrees; for those who’re fast sufficient and handle to select up 5 in a row, you’ll be able to activate their energy and instantly add 5 seconds again onto your timer. Seems like a small, insignificant enhance in principle, however while you’re just some ft away out of your finish objective, these additional seconds make all of the distinction.

Whereas the supporting narrative in Aeon Drive is merely a distraction at finest, the gameplay showcased right here is an absolute pleasure when you familiarize yourself with every part. There’s a little bit of a studying curve at first; you’ll must grasp leaping, sliding, swinging your sword, and chucking your teleportation dagger on the right time so as to keep any semblance of velocity and momentum. It’s loads to soak up, however as soon as every mechanic lands and turns into a easy a part of your muscle reminiscence, you’ll be dashing by means of the levels with ease.

The teleportation dagger is finally what units Aeon Drive other than different speedrunning platformers. Primarily, you throw it at any wall inside vary by tapping ‘A’ alongside together with your supposed course on the analogue stick, and it’ll keep locked in place till you faucet ‘A’ once more to teleport over to your dagger; form of like a futuristic grapple hook. Utilizing the dagger permits you to bypass obstacles like lethal lasers and bottomless drops, nevertheless it additionally provides an unimaginable feeling of momentum, notably while you handle to throw it in simply the proper place on the proper time, letting you successfully skip a very good chunk of the stage in a single fast movement. It’s extremely satisfying.

Though Jackelyne is fairly nimble on her ft, she’s nonetheless extraordinarily weak to enemy harm and obstacles. Getting hit simply as soon as sends you proper again to the beginning of the extent, so not solely do it’s worthwhile to full every stage within the quickest time potential, however you additionally must do it in a single good run. Naturally, it’s very important that you simply be taught every stage just like the again of your hand for those who’re to climb the web leaderboards, together with the location of enemies, the optimum place to throw your dagger, whether or not you’ll be able to leap over a very lengthy hole, and lots extra. The replay worth right here is clear, notably for those who’ve bought a aggressive, compulsive nature.

Visually, the sport is totally lovely, too, with attractive pixel graphics displaying a very good degree of element within the ranges and their respective backgrounds. There’s little selection with the general aesthetic past completely different color palettes, however we’d argue that something extra would threat distracting from the gameplay. There’s a little bit of added customisation to Jackelyne’s personal color palette — primarily for while you play within the non-obligatory multiplayer mode — however there’s little incentive to decide on a particular color for those who’re taking part in by yourself (we frequently went with the yellow-haired choice; she appears like a Tremendous Saiyan, okay?!).

Talking of multiplayer, the story mode lets as much as 4 individuals play by means of the sport in co-op, with an extra PvP mode pitting you in opposition to as much as three native opponents. Sadly, native play is the one choice in the mean time, however on-line play is on the way in which by way of a future replace. The excellent news, although, is the sport’s efficiency is just about flawless whether or not you’re taking part in by yourself or with associates, with rock strong body charges and minimal load occasions all through.

Our remaining shout out goes to the sport’s wonderful soundtrack. The cyberpunk vibes are evident within the music — which bears greater than a passing resemblance to Purturbator’s work — with sweeping synth notes and booming bass strains. It’s actually nice stuff and an ideal accompaniment to your good, second-shaving runs.


Aeon Drive isn’t fairly up there with fashionable platforming classics like Celeste, nevertheless it’s fairly darn shut nonetheless. Whereas its narrative gained’t win any awards, that is merely a supporting backdrop to the incredible gameplay on supply. Bolstered by strong efficiency and minimal loading screens, racing by means of the degrees feels exhilarating as you leap, slide, and teleport your manner by means of the maze-like environments. With a web based leaderboard to fulfill your aggressive nature and added multiplayer as well, Aeon Drive is a speedrunning triumph that completely deserves your consideration.

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