The Fallen Legion series has been around for a few years now so let's dive into the latest action-packed installment; Revenants.
Fallen Legion Revenants has a rather cool premise as you take turns controlling 2 characters within their respective distinct locations. First, Lucien is a cunning political figure who resides in Welkin Castle which is a safe place to be since the world is now immersed in hazardous miasma. The other character is Rowena who's a ghost. She's on a mission to come back to life so she can be there for her son who's still alive and the 2 protagonists inevitably team up in the hopes of overthrowing Welkin's corrupt leader. Thankfully, Rowena has the ability to command a small army of Exemplars which are interesting characters in their own right. This ties directly in with the gameplay as you primarily engage in combat as Rowena and the rest is done while controlling Lucien. Needless to say, it's an interesting premise.
As far as gameplay goes, Lucien basically just explores a handful of rooms in Welkin Castle between missions in order to set up Rowena's party and during missions, you'll occasionally take control of him to interview NPCs, make decisions, and find certain key items. It's all extremely basic stuff but you'll sometimes have a strict time limit which definitely complicates things. Will you make the right choices? Does it even matter? Anyway, when you're ready, you head out to a mission where you mostly command Rowena and an army of 3 Exemplars. These missions have your party automatically run forward as you intermittently engage groups of enemies in battle. If you played Fallen Legion: Sins of an Empire or any other game in the series, it'll undoubtedly all be extremely familiar to you.
Speaking of familiar, the combat certainly hasn't changed much over the years as all you essentially do is mash buttons with the bottom 3 face buttons corresponding to your Exemplars and the top one is reserved for Rowena's spells. Tapping the buttons executes standard moves while holding shoulder buttons lets you perform a couple special attacks and spells that can do things like push and pull enemies along their linear arrangement. This might sound like you have to think strategically in order to emerge victorious but you really don't. In fact, the best strategy in most cases is to mash buttons, perform special attacks whenever you can, and heal when need be. If you're feeling up to it, you can also reflect certain attacks with perfectly-timed guards which can devastate enemies' break gauges.
Overall, battles in Fallen Legion Revenants are tiresome and I frankly looked forward to controlling Lucien much of the time even though he does far less for the simple fact that I could give my fingers a rest. On the plus side, I thoroughly enjoyed toppling the selection of bosses which can be tedious but at least it's satisfying. I also appreciate the character artwork which is close to Vanillaware's aesthetic complete with smooth animations that make the characters come to life. On the downside, I wish that there was more to do when it came to setting up your party because aside from equipping accessories that provide various boosts and assigning abilities, there really isn't much else to consider. Now that I think about it; all you do in the whole game is fight and walk around as Lucien within the same few rooms. That really doesn't add up to a complete game experience and I would have loved to see and do much, much more.
I find it odd when a sequel in a series does little to set itself apart from its predecessors and Fallen Legion Revenants especially perplexes me with its monotonous combat and minimal gameplay elements. Great artwork, though, even if Rowena looks like Soma Cruz.
- + Investigation scenes and decision-making component help mix things up
- + Lovely character art and animations
- + Taking down bosses is satisfying
- - Repetitive and tiresome combat that requires little need for strategy
- - Character growth is too narrow
- - Could use many more elements