Axiom Verge

Axiom Verge:  It's kinda like if Metroid's weird brother made a game.

There have been some really good indie metroidvania's released like Cave Story, Guacamelee, and La-Mulana. Unfortunately, there's also been a flood of dogshit titles that have been mucking the place up with the lack of quality control. You can point the finger at Steam and Kickstarter for that one. Now we have the latest indie entry into the genre, Axiom Verge. While it's nowhere near perfect, it bucks the current trend of crap that does a solid job at emulating Metroid while doing an even better job creating a uniquely weird environment to explore.


There are part of the game, like this one where you'll probably stop and just appreciate the style.

Axiom Verge tells the story of Trace; as a scientist, he has an accident in a lab and is transported to this strange biomechanical land. With the help of AI personalities, he sets out to find a way home and stop a being known as Athetos who seems to be the cause of the world's problems. The game plays similar to any entry in the Metroid series where the player is put on a giant map and access to areas is restricted unless you have the right abilities to pass. In Axiom Verge, the abilities are what makes this game shine. You are equipped with an Axiom Disruptor that acts as your Swiss Army Knife for killing things and has a ton of different upgrades that people are going to mix and match for their play style. There are abilities like phasing through walls and a drill to find new passages, but the real star of the show is the Address Disruptor. This ability “glitches” everything from platforms and enemies with varying results. It's nice to try this out on different enemy types to see how it weakens (or sometimes strengthens) them. The environment and art also deserve mention. While some areas give off too much of a Metroid vibe, there are other sections where the art was beautifully ominous. The pile bodies in the background, the huge husks of machinery, the giant feminine robotic heads hooked to a swarm of cabling. It sets the right tone of a very dark and strange world that you are trying to get the hell out of.

Bosses can get huge, like messy vagina face over here.

There's not much to bitch about, but here it is. There's a section that breakups the flow of exploration. I'm not talking about having an easy time in a game. It's more that there is a certain part where you seem stuck like finding a wrong ADDRESS. You can't backtrack since your jump isn't upgraded so you're stuck in the same area scratching your head for far too long. This is really the only part that DISRUPTS the flow. Fuck it. ADDRESS DISRUPTOR. USE THE FUCKING ADDRESS DISRUPTOR….on the water. I also wished they put as much time for the level art as well as some of the background images you see in the game.

While the areas are unique enough to stand out, a small complaint is certain sections, look drab and boring.

While the core Metroid gameplay is there, Axiom Verge is just too damn weird to be called a clone. It's not perfect, but as it stands, this is a great game. For those worrying about the price, there's at least about 12 hours if you don't 100 percent it and a speedrun feature for you masochists out there. Fans of NES era adventure games will find a lot to love here. Axiom Verge has enough going for it to be unique and worth the purchase.