Square Enix has released a new 10-minute gameplay demonstration for Nier: Replicant ver.1.22474487139.., and while we aren’t looking forward to ever typing that again, the footage is very impressive. It not only gives us a sense of the visual overhaul the game received since it released in 2010, but also how the combat has been refined to match its sequel’s quality.
The video focuses on the protagonist and Kaine as they enter the Barren Temple, an area previously hidden by a sandstorm. It features large environmental puzzles as well as classic Nier combat, combining hack-and-slack action with third-person shooting and dodging projectiles.
If you played the original Nier, you know the combat wasn’t exactly tight or particularly fluid. That changed with Platinum Games’ input for Nier: Automata, and those same improvements are evident in the retooled Nier: Replicant. There is a sense of weight as you break an enemy’s guard and send them flying backward, and you can also deflect their attacks and deliver devastating counter-blows. The Ikaruga-inspired enemy projectiles are still here, as well, mixing in a healthy dose of arcade action into your existential adventure.
Despite only launching on current-gen systems and PC, Nier: Replicant looks remarkably better than the original version, and it also sounds incredible because of Keiichi Okabe’s score. We’re sure it’s going to make us cry, as will Yoko Taro’s story of sacrifice and family during a humanity-eviscerating plague.
Nier: Replicant releases for PS4, Xbox One, and PC on April 23. It’s being developed primarily by Toylogic, and a mobile-only game called Nier: Reincarnation is also launching later this month in Japan. An English-language release date hasn’t been announced yet.
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