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Nintendo Switch Game Review

Victor Vran: Overkill Edition


Format: Nintendo Switch
Publisher: Wired Productions,
Developer: Haemimont Games
Age Restrictions: 16+
Release Date: 28 August 2018

The kingdom of Zagoravia finds itself overrun with multiple types of demons and the call has gone out for dungeon hunters. For a year the castle has remained under a state of siege and the demon hunters which have ventured into the catacombs disappear. The latest in an extensive line to answer the call is Victor Vran who arrives looking for his friend, Adrian...

Victor Vran: Overkill Edition, for the Nintendo Switch, is an action role-playing gothic cyberpunk game from developers Haemimont Games, who are probably better known as the developers of the Tropico series of games.

Review imageYou can only play as Victor, so there are no classes to play with. You get a dungeon hunter and that’s it. I don’t think that this is a problem as a lot of gamers would only predominantly play a single class in a RPG. This also makes more sense as the game is a steampunk, dungeon crawler so your concentration is focused on you against the environment, surviving on what you can scavenge and craft against waves of demons and skeletons. If you complete the ten hour single player game, the game offers a number of options for extended play, from hex’s which make clearing areas more difficult to being able to play as a member of Motorhead.

The game is presented in a diabloesque isometric format; however there are a few nice tweaks which make the game stand out from the competition. Firstly, there is the option to jump. This may not sound much but as Victor can jump over obstacles he has the option, if a suitable barrier is available, to place himself outside of the combat area, allowing the player to gather his thoughts.

It also allows you to access seemingly inaccessible areas and the game also throws in some puzzles which require you to jump to discover secret areas of the map. Victor can also dodge, but if all else fails and you have run out of potions, each area has a rejuvenation statue, usually in areas overrun by demons.

Review imageThe world is broken up into large single areas, with dungeons attached. As Victor, your job is to clear these areas and the game sets certain challenges, kill x number of demons in x amount of time, find x number of secrets, that sort of thing. So, the game doesn’t just suggest exploration, it is a cornerstone of the whole experience. Each of the completed challenges gains Victor various rewards, from money, XP to weapons.

Through exploration Victor can find gold, used to buy and craft things, and you can pick up more weapons. You're likely to spend a long time comparing stats on weapons or discovering the joy of coming across a particularly rare item. Victor is restricted in the amount he can carry so there is a lot of comparing weapon stats and flogging off the dross. Weapons offer a basic firing attack as well as a couple of specials which can be further combined for even better bonuses and effects. Victor can also own and upgrade destiny cards which, like his different outfits, give various passive advantages.

Review imageThere are a number of difficulty setting and obviously the higher the difficulty the better the rewards, against this, the higher levels can feel a bit manic when you are being swarmed. I found it better to level up Victor, his weapons and cards at a normal level of play before increasing the difficulty; it would be a brave player that just jumped in at the game's higher levels without preparation. This does mean that if you're obsessed on always getting the best stuff the game has a lot of replay value. How you kill demons is up to you, with a large range of melee and projectile weapons at your disposal. When Victor carries two weapons you gain the ability to switch between in-your-face hack and slash combat to a more controlled long distance sniper mode.

I discovered that it was quite addictive always roaming the various areas trying to find a weapon which was better than the one I already had and the crafting system works well. The voice acting is very atmospheric and game progression can range from just surviving crossing a map to having to take out a boss. Each of the areas also has optional supplemental quests which will grant further rewards.

Review imageHaving played the game on the PS4 there was some initial concern as to how well this would translate to the Nintendo Switch. Played in the dock I didn’t really see any degrading of quality from the PS4 edition. The colours and environments look great on the television and luckily Victor is still large enough, in handheld mode, to offer up a good game play experience.

If you don’t mind the endless number crunching - and some may actively enjoy this - there is a lot to like about Victor Vran. Plus with the Switch you can take Victor with you, so no interruption of game play need occur.


Charles Packer

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