PAX East 2016: First Impressions – Axiom Verge (Wii U)

This isn’t so much a “first impressions” as it is a “first look at a port” since Axiom Verge has already enjoyed some time on other platforms (though apparently it runs like garbage on PS Vita). However, it was included in Nintendo’s official list of titles heading to PAX East this year, so we took a moment to check it out. We were very excited about it coming to the Wii U when we mentioned it heading to Nintendo’s console back in March, so…what does it look like now that the port is almost here?

If you’ve played Axiom Verge on PS4 before, you’ll have to get used to a new element of the map/inventory appearing on the GamePad…but that’s about the extent of the changes in terms of the control scheme. So, that’s that.

As for the “Metroidvania” aspect of the game, it’s debatable as to whether it’s really as Metroidvania as claimed in the early press materials. It’s more as though the game draws influence without full-out becoming that type of experience—in fact, Contra was the comparison most quickly made to the gameplay experience.

There are numerous weapons to switch between, late-game powerups to change the course of your experience, moments of being totally overwhelmed (in the best way, if you like this type of game), and tough combat that doesn’t mess around.

The music also helps add to the experience, as it’s highly atmospheric and has a rather dark feel to it—not to mention that the storyline is also somewhat depressing, but in the way that has a meaningful impact rather than tragedy for tragedy’s sake. We won’t say any more in order to avoid spoilers, but it’s worth knowing that when you get into Axiom Verge, it isn’t going to be puppies and rainbows and heroic wonder. There’s more depth to it, even in the midst of some serious bullet hell.

Will you like it on the Wii U? If you’re familiar with the console (and presumably you are, since you’re reading this) and enjoy Metroidvania/Contra-esque games but also appreciate depth to your storylines and music…you’ll definitely want to check this one out when it releases for the Wii U this summer.


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Author: Faith View all posts by
Faith likes games and books and cake and writing and Lara Croft, not necessarily in that order. She also thinks a Skylanders cartoon show is a really, REALLY good idea...

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