Review: Extinction (Computer)
- Release Date (NA): April 10, 2018
- Release Date (EU): April 10, 2018
- Publisher: Modus Games
- Developer: Iron Galaxy
- Genres: Action
- Also For: PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Single playerLocal MultiplayerOnline MultiplayerCo-operative
Attack on Humans
If you’ve read the manga or watched the anime of Shingeki no Kyojin (a.k.a Attack on Titan), then the premise of Extinction will sound eerily familiar:
Giant (and less giant) monstrosities called Ravenii attack human towns indiscriminately, killing and destroying everything in their wake. The only one way to kill them and save humanity: slash ‘em in the nape. In Extinction you’ll take control Avil, one of the last Sentinels trained in the ways of the ancient order to stand a chance at defeating the ogres. As such, in the campaign mode you’ll go from town to town, using Avil’s whip (somewhat akin Attack on Titan’s Omnidirectional Mobility Gear) to swing and glide up high slaughtering Ravenii and saving civilians as the story slowly progresses.
It’s Not About The Plot
Being a blatant ripoff and quite shallow, the plot feels more like a placeholder. It mostly progresses as dialogues between Avil and Xandra, who is a talented inventor and Avil’s friend. A few more characters get some say in the whole story, but not much, and most of the dialogues happen as stills before starting a mission. It’s a shame, as the trailers showed more promising cutscenes and the campaign mode would have benefited from those should they have been present. Instead, only a handful of cutscenes in the form of short comic-style animations are shown after some chapters.
The Campaign mode often feels like it’s dragging the narrative as an excuse to pit you in new missions. All of this is done at the expense of character development which would have been much more welcome considering the interesting world the story is set in.
Now I could oversee the poor plot execution if the gameplay was the redeeming feature of the game, unfortunately, even the gameplay feels monotonous. Most levels will progress as follows: rescue civilians, kill some pesky monsters, build up your Rune Energy meter (kill streak) and slaughter the Ravenii to get through the level. Even the animation is the same for every attack and each Ravenii decapitation. Despite its skill tree to improve your stats, the gameplay stays very much the same. In the end, it revolves mostly around mashing the attack, dodge and jump buttons until you clear the mission.
Moreover, each “new” location unashamedly reuses assets with minor tweaks and color changes, making each level feel more of the same. Couple that to the repetitive gameplay and dragging narrative, it gets quite boring in the long run.
The game nevertheless does a decent job at spreading the difficulty across its chapters. Each Chapter is split into levels, where some are tougher than others (indicated by the number of stars) and to increase the challenge, you can take on side missions like saving a specific number of civilians or finishing the level quickly. These will get you extra experience points that can subsequently be used to upgrade your skills.
While I did not feel particularly threatened by the giants, finishing them off always felt satisfying. The player is free to choose his/her approach to topple down the Ravenii. You can climb all the way up while the giant is moving or chop off his legs to momentarily incapacitate it (the limbs grow back after a while) so that you can have a better aim. Some missions will reward you for killing Ravenii in special ways like finishing it off with intact limbs or dismembering it while in the air. To make things more interesting, some Ravenii will have armor that protect their limbs, head and neck. As such you’ll have to get those out of the way before finishing off the threats. However, some of the armor require more hits to break and some are even indestructible! For those you’ll have to find other ways to emerge victorious…
Extinction also has online modes complete with leaderboards and personal bests:
- Daily Challenge: where you can compete against other online players for the highest score for the day’s challenge
- Extinction: Kill as many enemies as you can without respawning
- Skirmish: Compete against others online for the highest score in randomized battlegrounds
The online modes felt more enticing to me by delivering some mindless fun by slashing towering enemies while trying to best my own or others’ score. However, since it is very much like the Campaign mode with its repetitive gameplay and similar looking levels, one can only have so much fun when presented the same assets on loop.
+ Balanced difficulty
+ Satisfying kills
+ Competitive online modes
+ Mindless fun in online modes
- Repetitive gameplay
- Underdeveloped story
- Reused assets
- Blatant copycat of ‘Attack on Titan’
From the lore to the gameplay to the weak points of the Ravenii, 'Extinction' reminds us of its inspiration and it put it all together without much subtlety in a game with a poorly developed story and reused environments.
It all feels too monotonous in the long run with the same execution and even the animations are kept the same.
Despite its repetitive gameplay and underdeveloped plot, the online mode improves its lasting appeal with its various modes for going on mindless rampage sessions.
out of 10
(not an average)
An 'Attack on Titan' wannabe that falls short with its repetitive gameplay and poorly developed plot.