NIER REPLICANT VER.1.22474487139
By Diana "DumeeGamer" Dumee on April 28, 2021
I had so much fun playing NieR: Automata, so I was really looking forward to a next/another part in this series. Back in 2010 NieR Replicant was released, but only in Japan. It became a success and NieR: Automata followed. But now, eleven years later, the rest of the world can join the fun, because NieR Replicant was released on April 23 for PlayStation 4, Xbox one and PC.
When the original version was released, there was also an alternative version made, called NieR: Gestalt, in which you took control of an older protagonist searching for a cure for his sick daughter, Yonah. It was this version that was released outside Japan as NieR for the PS3 and Xbox 360 and served as the basis of the series. Sadly, Replicant has only remained available in Japan. until now, that is. As we start our adventure, we meet the main character, who is Yonah's somewhat older brother. This stems from the original Japanese release, with its two different versions, one with the older character (NieR Gestalt) and one with the younger (NieR Replicant). So this game is based on the latter, but aside from the player-model and some minor dialogue, the differences are actually negligible. If you still want to experience the older protagonist, there's some fun bonus-content included for you.
Funny thing; I wasn't aware that the name I used for the save file of my game was also used as the name for the protagonist, so now this dude is called Diana. Oh well, on with the story. Both youngsters find themselves trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world and things aren't looking good. Yonah is sick and there are monsters stalking through the city. These monsters are shadow monsters in black and yellow and naturally they are called Shades. To protect his sister, the protagonist needs to fight them, which is also a great way for us, the player, to learn the basics of the game, including how to win a boss fight! The thing that stands out is a book that is floating around our protagonist, which grants him great abilities.
After coming out of the battle as the victor, we fast forward 1400 years. The protagonist and his sister Yonah found a nice little town, with friendly people who are helping them. Yonah is still sick and her cough got very bad. One of the first assignments here is to get mutton in the northern plains. I was really hoping for a dead sheep, but alas. It really came down on killing three sheep myself. I'm only hoping the rest of my assignments will be more cheerful. This was also my first fighting mission during my time in this little town and I noticed my floating book companion has left me apparently. damn it!
To make things worse, my sister soon got herself in a messy situation and of course it's up to me to get her out of this. The protagonist told her earlier about a legend of the so called Luna Tears, which grant the owner great wealth. Yonah feels a bit guilty about still being sick and she needs an expensive medicine. So she thought it was a smart plan to look for those Luna Tears herself. Bad sister points, but this mission has a bright side. In my quest to save my sister I found my floating book again, which by the way has a mind of its own now, as well as a name: Grimoire Weiss.
When we are safely back in town, it turns out my sister's situation got worse. She has the Black Scrawl, which curses the afflicted with strange runic symbols, spreading all over their body. And, to make thing even worse, it's fatal. But on the bright side we find out that Grimoire Weiss, the book, should be able to help. But in order to do so we have to find sealed verses, so Grimoire Weiss can purge the world of calamity, caused by another book, Grimoire Noir. Sounds simple enough, right? Well, approximately 20 hours of gameplay tells another story. I like the variation in camera angles in the game. Most of the time it's over the shoulder, but some parts of levels the angle changes and you're looking at a side-scrolling perspective. And in some parts of the game, the camera will switch to top-down. Those particular parts reminded me of the first Zelda game. The design of the game is beautiful. While the original version ran in 720p and with up to 30fps, this upgrade now runs at up to 4K with up to 60fps on consoles. The environments and character models have also been rebuilt, and there is enhanced lighting and a longer draw distance, bringing the remaster more in line with NieR: Automata.
If I am completely honest, I have to say I didn't enjoy NieR Replicant as much as I enjoyed NieR: Automata. Don't get me wrong, I still think it's a good game, but I just feel that Automata had a quicker start and the missions were of more importance, in my humble opinion at least. I have slaughtered more enemies in the first hour of Automata, then I did in Replicant. But I also get that Automata was actually the successor of Replicant and that makes a lot of sense. I think that it is awesome that the whole world can enjoy the game that is the source of the NieR series. Plus, with more than one ending to unlock the game's replay value is high. In short; both games are action-RPGs, Automata was more action, Replicant is more RPG.
Nevertheless, the game is fun and well-made. So, if you're a fan of Japanese action RPGs, you will probably enjoy the time spent on playing NieR Replicant. So do yourself a favor; get out there and enjoy the amazing world of NieR Replicant!