RemiLore: Lost Girl in the Lands of Lore isn’t a bad game. I’ll say that much straight off the bat. However, that’s not to say that it’s a particularly good game, because it’s not. If anything, RemiLore sits in the middle ground and will likely only attract, and probably only please, fans of its concept. It’s a silly game at heart, but it does prove to offer up some gratifying fun nonetheless. There’s a story buried underneath its play, and although not compelling, it serves as a backbone. The title is a play on the game’s two characters.
Remi is your average high school student, and upon cleaning the library, she accidentally awakens Lore, a talking spell-book. Dazed, Lore transports the two of them to the world of Ragnoah, a place in which the adventure at hand unfolds. The game’s story and character interactions are relayed through still images and text boxes, together with annoyingly overdone voice work throughout. Together, Remi and Lore must unite to overthrow the evil doers that are occupying the world they’ve found themselves in. Simple, but justified.
RemiLore is a hack-and-slash game with a few mechanics present to help set itself apart from its peers. Whilst it doesn’t quite manage to get ahead of its competition, it’s very likely to find a following all the same. With that in mind, it’s immediately important to understand that this game is far from the sort of experience that you’ll find in the likes of Diablo. It’s less time consuming, for one. RemiLore, by ease-of-use alone, is a game that you can use to fill an afternoon or two, and then come back when you feel like it and at your own leisure.
The game’s price-tag is likely going to draw some attention. Simply because the content present doesn’t really justify the steep cost. Whatever the case, and back to the point, Remi and Lore are bound by purpose. Throughout the course of the adventure, each character will learn more about who they are, where they are, and why shit has hit the proverbial fan. The crux of play sees you working through the game’s acts, battling masses of enemies and bosses along the way – most of which resemble something that Sonic’s Eggman constructed.
The quality of its story, and more specifically, the way that it’s told, doesn’t really hit any notable highs. In fact, you can disregard it entirely and still pull the same sort of experience from the game. Now, as aforementioned, the game is broken into several acts. You’ll typically work through an act, defeat its boss, and then move onto the next. The concluding act for each section serves itself as a grand boss encounter. Once you’ve nuked that, you’ll move onto the next section, follow the same loop, rinse and repeat until the endgame.
The actual gameplay is respectably fluid and responsive. Using a mixture of light and heavy attacks, you’ll chain combos against hordes of foes for as long as you can maintain momentum. Your attacks will vary depending on your combo, all of which is relayed on-screen in a very clean and easy to understand fashion. The key to success is knowing your opponent. It’s wise to adapt to the movement and attack patterns of your enemies if you plan on achieving high ranks, which in truth, isn’t really all that hard to get a handle on.
Enemies tend to rely on a mixture of melee and projectile attacks, all of which are easy to avoid even when you have minimal reaction time. This is largely thanks to the generous dash that Remi can utilize throughout. Remi can rapidly move out of harm’s way three times in total, with each dash tethered to a short cool-down. Outside of that, Lore makes use of his own powers that can aid Remi in combat, and, using a mixture of all the above, you’ll make easy work of laying the game’s beasts to waste. It helps that it’s very accessible.
The controls remain tight throughout, and are not at all hard to gel with overall. Movement is achieved through the use of the left stick, with your attacks tied to the Y and the B button. The X button will utilize Lore’s magical abilities, whereas the A button will see Remi dashing. That’s everything as far as functionality goes. The game’s depth is found in the systems that support this. Pulling up the game’s menu at any given time will present you with a clean and concise suite of options and added extras. Here is where you’ll bulk-up your party of two.
The menus are broken into six sections; status, upgrades, weapons, commands, record, and system. Status simply gives you a brief dollop of information regarding your current standing; HP, MP, DPS, and so forth. The latter two options allow you to browse your playing time and accolades, as well as options that allow you to save your game, respectively. Commands is useful for when you’re looking to learn the combos of each weapon type. Weapons, on the other hand, shows you the traits of each weapon within.
That leads us funnily to the most important tab. Upgrades. Here, you’ll find a wealth of options to further the capabilities of Remi and Lore. Lore has a sizable amount of spells that he can unlock and utilize, from freezing enemies in a certain radius, right up to unleashing a barrage of projectiles. You’re free to upgrade these abilities to enjoy more powerful forms. There’s much more on offer that you can unlock, such as reducing shop prices and increasing the likelihood of finding more powerful weaponry. Again, all can be upgraded.
You’ll buy these additions through the use of desserts. Yes, you read that correctly. Sweet tasty goodness is the currency in RemiLore. Throughout play, you’ll get desserts for pretty much anything you take your weapon to. One annoyance is that their attraction radius is a bit off, meaning you’ll constantly circle the map over and over for desserts that failed to draw to Lore. It’s a small gripe, but one that hits often. When you’re not picking up treats, you’ll be picking up items that replenish or maximize both your health and magic power.
Should you lose your MP, you’ll be unable to use your magic. Naturally, should you lose your HP, you’ll die and be sent back to the beginning of the act you’re on. The acts don’t take too long to run through, roughly offering five minutes of hacking and slashing per-whack. There’s a small mini-map to the lower corner of the screen, and here, you can keep track of where you’re going. The game’s maps are filled with alternate pathways that typically lead to breakable objects that are packed with treats and, if you’re lucky, some replenishment.
Once you find a room that’s occupied by enemies, you’ll be locked in until all enemies have been cleared. Following that, you’ll be scored based on skill and time. These scores go towards the level’s end score, which will grant you with chest rewards based on your performance. There’s also a few shops in each section that allows you to pay (desserts) for weapons and extras – many of which seems chance based. It’s worth checking out wares. Oftentimes I found myself getting a much bulkier weapon here, or a better passive skill.
The kicker, however, is that you’ll be spending those desserts that you could otherwise be spending on the previously alluded to permanent upgrades. The weaponry itself is quite simply outlandish. How is a flaming sword less powerful than a banana on a skewer? Hell if I know, but it works all the same. Whenever you loot and find a new weapon, a pop-up will tell you the DPS and traits of your current weapon, alongside the DPS and traits of the weapon you can pick up, allowing you to compare notes and see which will serve you best.
There’s a massive amount of varying weapons and weapon types that you can wield, many of which house their own pros and cons as far as handling goes. It’s likely the deepest system within RemiLore overall. Running alongside that, you can also find scrolls that will be dropped by mid-level bosses. These can be a double edged sword due to being RNG based, and mostly consist of altering your character’s current build. Though, because RemiLore is fairly easy by design, I found myself completely ignoring these additions in the long-run.
One aspect of RemiLore that I didn’t particularly enjoy was that of its random generation. You see, whenever you start a new level (or die) in RemiLore, the game will randomly generate its levels. Whilst that’s usually fine, the game has a tendency of shoehorning you into tight spaces and then filling said tight spaces with hordes of opponents. Several times did I die because of this poorly structured loop, through no fault of my own. The game makes a habit of doing this often, making for a string of cheap and unfair deaths throughout.
It’s fair to summarize this game as an experience for the casuals. The lack of difficulty, together with its short length and its needless grindy-loop, is surely going to leave a lot to be desired for those curiously moving over from the likes of Diablo. It’s a serviceable adventure at best, one that you’ll probably forget about before the credits finish rolling. Despite its short modes, there’s quite a bit of longevity on show if you’ve the stomach to endure its inevitable repetition; story mode, story mode without the story, co-op, and so forth.
There’s also some difficulty tiers to select from, but I personally couldn’t find the patience to run through it more than once. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun to begin with and it certainly manages to maintain that for at least its first run, but there’s only so many times you can listen to the frustrating voice work and find satisfaction in its combat. Revisiting the cost of RemiLore ($39.99), is this game worth it for the few hours of fun that it offers up? No, I daresay it’s worth half its asking price at best, and even then that feels like quite a push.
It’s a shame really, because there’s clearly a solid foundation within. Though, I found myself constantly second guessing my feelings towards its design choices. Why have this many weapons when they all get the job done in the face of its lack of difficulty? Why implement random generation when it works against you more than it offers diversity? Why have such a generous reward system when you can easily beat the game without use of many of its unlocks? Some much stricter parameters would have done the game a lot of justice.
The overall problem is that for everything that it gets right, it seems to get something wrong. Whilst its systems are robust, they don’t feed into one another as well as they could have, and certainly not as well as the systems found in the game’s peers. I’ll commend the game for its visual design, however. RemiLore is packed with detail and environmental variation, ensuring that you’re constantly treated to new sights along the way. Unfortunately, amidst its poor voice work, the soundtrack and audio cues remain dull.
The bottom line in all of this is that if you’re seeking a laid-back hack-and-slash adventure that doesn’t take itself seriously, doesn’t provide much challenge, and can be played by most age brackets, RemiLore will do you some justice. If, on the other hand, you’re looking for depth, solid structure, and something with a bit more to chew on, you may want to look elsewhere, because you’re unlikely to be satisfied here. With some time and support, the developer may be able to fine-tune this, but until then, I would caution a blind purchase.
RemiLore clearly has some heart. The problem, unfortunately, is that its execution seems to be all over the place. I found myself almost constantly questioning the game’s many systems rather than enjoying them, simply due the fact that they don’t feel very unified overall. Still, I’ll credit the game for its tight combat, its accessibility, its healthy serving of modes, and its lush visuals, but even so, it’s not worth its rather steep and greedy asking price.
This game was tested and reviewed on Xbox One. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version.Want to keep up to date with the latest Xt reviews, Xt opinions and Xt content? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.