Aragami: Shadow Edition review

Aragami: Shadow Edition

After being very well received for PS4 and PCs, Aragami comes to Xbox One in its improved Shadow Edition version. Developed and published by Spanish studio Lince Works, Aragami: Shadow Edition is a 3rd person stealth game set in a feudal Japan-like world, you play as Aragami, a vengeful spirit summoned by a girl who’s imprisoned by the light army. With your powers over shadows, fight your way to the city fortress of Kyuryu while you uncover more about your past and understand your role into this battle between light and shadow. Prepare yourself and follow us into this gloomy review.

THE GOOD

  • Aragami: Shadow Edition presents beautiful cell-shaded graphics and colorful scenarios. The visuals of your movements and abilities (your movement leaping from one shadow to another, for instance) have some pretty good effects and animations. The one I liked the most is the visual over your character’s body when you’re immerse in shadows: the light tones over his shadow body gives an interesting sensation of menace (specially for some of the unlockable costumes like the Wrath – my favorite) that would scare the hell out of those who see him.
  • Music and sound are also great! The music – or its absence – gives the tone to the universe you’re diving into, with some great Japanese themed songs or moments of almost silence where you must concentrate in the sounds around you. Sound effects are spot on and play an important role in the gameplay because you enemies can hear you. Remember to move nice and slow not to make too much noise, allowing them to detect you. Or, if you want to attract attention to make your enemies move from or to a determined location, using the sound is your best option.
  • Aragami: Shadow Edition is a stealth game that’s challenging and punitive. Your enemies have light weapons that can kill you with a single blow. To succeed in this adventure, you must play smart: use the environment at your disposal to dispatch or avoid enemies while you advance in each stage. You can choose between playing as the shadow of death, eliminating all treats by stealth kills with your sword or using the power of shadows, or you can play as a ghost, traversing stages without being noticed. If you can’t decide which one suits you best, whatever your choice, you can always repeat a level with a different tactic! That’s what I’ve been doing to experience the best of this game and I strongly recommend you try both approaches – the silent one and the killer one.
  • The feeling of progression in the game is something unique. I struggled in the beginning to be able to finish levels both not being detected or dispatching all foes. But as I got access to new abilities that can be unlocked by recovering special scrolls hidden in the stages, I started to see how powerful Aragami really is. Some of the abilities include to identify targets behind walls, become invisible, swallow your enemies in darkness or throwing deadly kunais. Your progression is totally up to you and your playstyle, which is awesome!
  • For the delight of those who enjoy a good coop game, Aragami: Shadow Edition can be played in online coop (with cross platform between Xbox One and PC), like its original version. Although I wasn’t able to play it in coop during my time reviewing the game (probably because the servers weren’t yet online), it’s awesome to play along with a friend who also have the same powers as you. Enemies won’t stand a chance!
  • Shadow Edition also comes with a new DLC, Nightfall, a prequel to Aragami’s adventure in which you play as two new characters (in single or coop) with new moves and powers! Needless to say, but you should finish the main story before trying out this new DLC, ok?

MIXED FEELINGS

  • Although the main characters are fully voiced (in Japanese, which is great!), I had some trouble hearing them. It seems like Aragami’s and Yamiko’s voices are always under some sort of cover, muffling it. Maybe Aragami’s mask was to blame for it.
  • Even with beautiful cell-shaded graphics, scenarios could have presented some more details.

THE BAD

  • Camera is common problem in 3D games and with Aragami is no different. Specially when close to walls or in narrow passages, the camera had some trouble finding a good spot to focus on my character, causing some clipping over the scenario.
  • While speaking, characters mouth’s move out of sync with the sound, giving an odd impression. It’s ok for Aragami not moving his mouth at all, since he’s an immaterial body, but seeing this problem with humans is strange.

Aragami: Shadow Edition [Score: 90%] A great option for stealth games fans! It doesn’t matter if you want to be a shadow assassin or a silent ghost, you can try this game on your own playstyle. Playing solo or in coop, fight the light with darkness and become the master of shadows in this amazing adventure to uncover the secrets of your past.

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