A Plague Tale: Requiem put a spell on us. Our new impressions of the next big game Xbox Game Pass – Video preview – jeuxvideo.com

A Plague Tale: Requiem put a spell on us.  Our new impressions of the next big game Xbox Game Pass - Video preview - jeuxvideo.com

Last June we had the chance to try out for the first time A Plague Tale: Requiem, the direct sequel to Asobo’s action-adventure game starring Amicia and her younger brother, Hugo. A month before its release, the game was allowed to be addressed one last time to help us understand the scope of its gameplay. One thing is already certain, since the episode Innocence, the little mouse has grown.

Under the sun

It is under the scorching sun of Provence that we find our young heroes still being pursued by dangerous soldiers who prowl the streets of the Kingdom of France. A few seconds of play are enough to realize the goldsmith work done by Asobo in the visual section of the game.. The panoramas are magnificent, the color palette is rich, the animations are detailed. We are not yet at the level of a production signed by Naughty Dog, but the French developers have released the horses. The music, by Olivier Derivière, is once again impeccable. In our demo (which covers the sixth and seventh chapters of the game), Amicia and Hugo look for a way to escape, literally. Unfortunately for them, the local mercenaries want to grab them. It must be said that a little boy capable of controlling rats accompanied by his older sister at the origin of several murders on the side of the troops must arouse many lusts.

A Plague Tale: Requiem put a spell on us.  Our new impressions of the next big Xbox Game Pass gameA Plague Tale: Requiem put a spell on us.  Our new impressions of the next big Xbox Game Pass game

As in the first episode, Amicia can rely on different items, such as a slingshot and pots, to advance through enemy lines. This material serves to divert the attention of the adversaries from her or to delay or even kill them. If sneaking through tall grass to get ahead unseen is still an important part of the game, Requiem goes much further in its mechanics.. The great evolution lies above all in the philosophy that encompasses the management of weapons and ammunition. Here, the player can display at any time a selection wheel that allows him to select the item he wishes to use (slingshot, saucepan, crossbow), but also and above all the type of ammunition to be equipped (incendiary, smoke, explosive, etc. .). ). What appears to be a simple interface redesign actually adds a lot of depth to the game, as it is now possible to mix any ammo type with any weapon. By mixing a pot with explosive ammunition, Amicia creates a grenade, by adding a little fire to a crossbow bolt, the heroine shoots incendiary arrows. The examples are numerous.

A Plague Tale: Requiem put a spell on us.  Our new impressions of the next big Xbox Game Pass gameA Plague Tale: Requiem put a spell on us.  Our new impressions of the next big Xbox Game Pass game

This upgrade goes hand in hand with larger arenas with lots of narrow passages, platforms to climb, or even bags of saltpeter to spread.. The level design is more complex than usual so as not to offer a single solution to a problem. Controller in hand, it is clear that Asobo’s bet is a winner. By using Hugo’s different weapons, ammunition and powers (which we will discuss later), the player will get out of inextricable situations. The enemies, numerous, give in any case a hard time: the progression may be less easy than that of the original adventure. Of course, Amicia can always rely on workbenches to upgrade her equipment. Also, the young heroine this time has skills (caution, aggressiveness, opportunism) to improve.

A Plague Tale: Requiem put a spell on us.  Our new impressions of the next big Xbox Game Pass game

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A Plague Tale: Requiem put a spell on us.  Our new impressions of the next big Xbox Game Pass game

Better seasoned compared to the epic that took place in Guyenne, Amicia and Hugo have serious concerns about their pursuers.. The older sister now knows how to hit melee back. In the event of an impromptu encounter, Amicia can attempt to counter or stab the enemy, if the young heroine has a knife in her inventory beforehand. Contextual actions that could be described as QTE are not reserved for combat. During infiltration phases in tall grass, a pebble can be thrown in extremis if a guard is about to find the duo. Additionally, a warrior who gets too close can also be burned alive with a well-thrown torch.

Compared to the first A Plague Tale, the escape is less synonymous with endgame than before. The player who manages to break opponents’ lines of sight after a general alert will be able to escape without a scratch. Meanwhile, Hugo still has his connection to the rats that he acquires at the end of the first game. However, the powers vary. By simply pressing down on the d-pad, the little brother can pinpoint lurking enemies like a walking sonar. You don’t need the latest Sam Fisher technology when you have a child whispering in the ears of rodents.. More interestingly, Hugo has the ability to transfer his mind into swarms of rats. Therefore, the player can launch themselves at soldiers and climb behind certain surfaces much like an Alien would in Alien Vs Predator.

These various abilities create a nice complementarity between the two protagonists.. Freer in what he can do, in contrast to the often unique solutions of the first episode, the player must carefully observe their surroundings before acting. He can sneak in with Amicia if she wishes, put out the fires with saltpeter, which makes way for the swarms of rats controlled by Hugo. Of course, we found soldiers equipped with long-range weapons to be eliminated in priority to advance, but in what we tested in these two chapters, few restrictions were placed on how to succeed in an arena. The many ways to interact with the decoration elements, the weapons, but also with the enemies work well for the moment: Asobo seems to have been able to rely on the implemented mechanics instead of the scripts.

our impressions

This time spent in the company of Amicia and Hugo confirms everything good that we already thought of the title. A Plague Tale: Requiem suggests a richer gameplay than the first episode, while maintaining quality staging. Closer to medieval Splinter Cell than a simple narrative game of hide-and-seek, Asobo’s software meets all our expectations so far. From now on, we are looking forward to discovering the adventure in full. A Plague Tale: Requiem will be released on October 18, 2022 for PC, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X\S, and Switch (via the cloud). It will be available on launch day on Game Pass.

editorial review

Exciting

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