Coatsink has been knocking it out of the park recently with hit after hit. Well, that’s to be expected from one of the UK’s biggest VR developers, and I expected nothing less from their newest release, Augmented Empire.
If you aren’t fimilar with the company, Coatsink is a British indie development team that continues to support and bring content to the Samsung Gear VR. Their previous titles include Esper, Esper 2, and A Night Sky.
Augmented Empire is a story-driven cyberpunk strategy RPG set on the island of New Savannah, an isolated neo-noir city that is divided into three tiers by the ‘Citizen Grade System.’ While the citizens deemed of high societal value live in luxury at the summit, outliers and criminals are forced to live in squalor at the island’s depths.
The game controls well, using grid-based movement mechanics, as the player uses the directional pad to move a character while clicking to make them shoot enemies and dodge their attacks. Sounds simple enough; however, you have to time it just right to evade an attack. At least most of the time you will likely get grazed by attacks since evading is definitely an aspect that needs to be mastered in this game; otherwise, you will have lots of deaths and have to retry levels. You are given two actions per turn and can either move or attack twice, or you can perform one of each action (attack and move/move and attack).
The graphics are stunning, and the 3D looks simply amazing. This game features an overhead, tabletop viewpoint, which is to be expected. There is only one level per map that is on the screen at a time, so you don’t have to worry about anything else but the level you are on. This is a good concept because you can focus on the gorgeous visuals for each particular area.
Like other Coatsink games that feature voice acting, the voice work in Augmented Empire is excellent and even has some familiar voices. It’s a pleasure hearing these actors in a Coatsink game.
Augmented Empire consists of about 10+ hours of gameplay, depending on how many times you die, of course. And even though it needs to be played in intervals and requires taking breaks from it because of an uncomfortable headset or your eyes starting to hurt, it is still an excellent experience to play if one is looking for a great story, amazing 3D graphics and even excellent voice acting.
Overall, Augmented Empire is an excellent 3D strategy roleplaying game that is worth playing. It doesn’t matter if you are a fan of SRPGs or not, if you have a Samsung Gear VR headset and are looking for something different, then this is definitely worth trying.
Release Date: 13th July 2017