June 19, 2016
SteamWorld Heist - PlayStation 4 - Review
Image & Form Games released SteamWorld Heist last year on Nintendo 3DS and while it was a massive hit there, but there were a lot of gamers that did not have a 3DS, so the team got straight back into the swing of things, bringing the game to other platforms, the first of those being PlayStation 4.
Having played through the game before, there was little in the story that surprised me, except that which I had forgotten, but for those who are new to the world. You take control of Captain Piper Faraday, leader of a bunch of misfit steambots who attempt to eke out a living on the edge of the frontier, whilst avoiding scavenging steambots and the imperial forces as well. As things progress, you can recruit new people to join your crew, which delivers personality to the story, as each bot has their own special touch that they add. Story is mostly told during the times between missions, but there are times when you get little bits of information during a mission as well.
Gameplay wise, the entire game plays the same on PlayStation as it does on 3DS, with player movement, shooting and what not all using the same control scheme. The movement of the characters is done with the d-pad, before you move, you have two colour schemes, orange and blue, if your movement is contained within the orange section, then you can fire your weapon if you need to and then move elsewhere, though if you move on to the blue first, you won’t be able to do another action until that characters next turn. This system provides the risk/reward system that a lot of people are aware of, but in a clever way, sometimes, moving a single character to the edge of the movement space, can keep you in battle far longer but with the drawback of losing an attack turn. For a complete understand of all the games mechanics, pun not intended, read the 3DS review.
What is different about this version of the game, over the original is that now, the game is running in beautiful HD and it shows. The level of detail now visible on the screen is wonderful, each of the character models look amazing and the world itself even more so, subtle actions of things moving in the background are easier to see now. The character and world design looked amazing back on the 3DS, but now that it is HD, things just tend to pop a lot more than before. One area that I had hoped the larger screen space would fix would be the level of zoom, but while they have improved it, you still won’t always get the full world on your screen to see where your shots will land exactly.
One space that did not really get an improvement though is the inventory screen, they seem to have taken the layout from the 3DS and just ported it across, which means that you will have to scroll up and down quite a lot, when it comes to managing your items. They are not the first to suffer from this kind of problem, nor do I expect that they will be the last, it is just a shame to see the extra space not used to its fullest.
SteamWorld Heist is an amazing game, playing through this version brought me to 5 playthroughs total and I still love the experience. It is a turn based game, for those that don’t like that, but it is also an adventure game for those who want a little more from their turn based. Sharp character and world design stand out even more in HD, plus to top it off, the game is just fun to play.
Thanks to Image & Form for the game to review