Let’s start by saying that this title is a renewal of what aims to become a saga with a promising future, because although many did not know before NieR Automata there is another title of the franchise called simply NieR, which went unnoticed for last generation consoles (PS3 and Xbox 360), but to NieR Automata, with its history, playability, soundtrack, artistic style and everything that forms this great adventure marks the difference to its predecessor.
NieR Automata shares the same postapocalyptic universe as the first Nier and takes place after the fourth final of this latest video game. Although it has similarity to the Drakengard series because of the dark atmosphere and the story branches, it does not keep narrative connection with this saga. Located thousands of years after the events that took place in NieR, the story revolves around a war between the remnants of humanity and an army of invading machines from another world. The initial invasion of this army forced the population of the Earth to flee towards the Moon. In order to recover the planet, humanity created the YoRHa squad, a unit consisting of combat androids in order to fight in a subsidiary war. Although they are denied their emotions and lack real names, they have particular attitudes by which they can be distinguished.
The interesting thing about all this is the way the game presents the story, since it makes you want to know more and more of why these androids act so humanly and the story behind this war. The sense of why the machines fight and even the enemies that presents the game become quite interesting as you progress in the game. Within the story you will have an android that will accompany you called 9S which has a sentimental connection that we perceived from the beginning with the main character 2B – which is the one we use – feelings being very strange for an android to have. I personally felt like playing through an anime or a science fiction series, because everything made me want to experiece the game as a great adventure.
We can say that the main character is YoRHa 2B, a female prototype of the YoRHa androids with a cold and calm personality. She is accompanied by YoRHa 9S, a reconnaissance android that expresses more emotions than other units and YoRHa model A2, an obsolete prototype of the 2B line with a stubborn personality who often chooses to act solo. Other characters are the android commander in charge of the bunker, the twins Adam and Eve – whose motives are unknown, Pascal – a machine that dislikes the conflict and wants peace, Devola and Popola – androids that help the Resistance, several operating androids acting as supervisors of the YorHA, Anemone – leader of the resistance that cooperates with the androids, the PODS that act as a combat support and the original protagonist of NieR – Emil, who lost his memories over the years. The video game also mentions several characters from both Drakengard 3 and the first NieR.
All this complex and entertaining plot are what makes NieR Automata a very good story.
NieR Automata is a RPG action game, which uses an open world system and plays a lot with the camera changes to control the gameplay, getting the feeling of a very dynamic game. Sometimes it gets a little strange the camera changes but the developers get to manage these transitions very well, giving you a total different experience in the combat approach and fights with the enemies.
The combat system is based on the hack and slash technique, often used in the RPG genre because you have to plan out the battle and know when to hit and dodge – and avoid dying. We can find multiple combinations of attacks that lead to crazy combos against enemies, in addition to a weapon improvement system. For our android 2B, we will also have the ability to dodge which in my Opinion is the key to being able to survive the most difficult fights, even if you only have 5% of life and the enemy has half of life, you can win the battle!
The game also contains the element of exploration in an open world environment, this is more used by the secondary missions where you have to explore the whole map – sometimes getting a little repetitive. Can I play the game without doing these missions? Because the rewards that I get from doing them are not that important. I would say that its impact on the game is not very relevant beyond providing with resources, so if you wan you can pass the game without doing them – even though you can benefit with the loot to get your character stronger.
You choose how to explore the game in this open world experience, making the journey of going to point A to point B less boring. We also have the ability to fast travel to certain points of the map, which saves us some time even though it deprives you from the feeling of adventure that you get exploring the game.
The soundtrack of this game is very good since it composed to highlight the epic moments in the game, besides it knows to combine the theme of the environment with the music. The only thing that fails is that you can get tired of it if you last a long time on the same area since there is not a great variation in the background music.
The music of the game as I already mentioned makes epic a moment that must be epic, since it is well implemented the soundtrack of game, when you go to fight against a boss the music makes you know that it is a boss since it changes the mood. Add to this that the game has very good sounds for shots, swords, footsteps, rain, explosions, falling rocks, steps in puddles, among many other elements of the game that complete the soundtrack of the game.
The graphics are nothing special – they’re okay – but where the game really stands out is in the artistic design of the game. The level designs are also interesting, since they represent the post-apocalyptics scenario the game wants to show, immersed in a large-scale war between humans and extraterrestrial machines.
In conclusion NieR Automata is a very good game, with a great story that intrigues you until the end, with an excellent gameplay and soundtrack that make you have an unforgettable game experience. NieR Automata fulfills its mission of being a great video game with a great adventure.
Note: This review was done with the PS4 version of the game. Translated by Angelica Lora
Carlos Molina / GamersRD