Fear Effect Sedna
Reviewed by Brett
Publisher – Square Enix, Forever Entertainment
Developer – Sushee
Category – Adventure, Action, Strategy, Puzzle
Release Date – Mar 06, 2018
Fear Effect Sedna for those of you who don’t know, is the revival of the long dormant Fear Effect series originally released in 2000 followed by its squeal Fear Effect 2 Helix in 2001 published by the now Square Enix acquired Eidos Interactive.
The game follows Hana and Rain who are partners in crime and partners at home, mercenaries by trade taking jobs with the highest bounty in a futuristic world. Offered a large amount of money by a man that breaks into their apartment for a what seems to be a classic art heist, they are reunited with allies Glas and Deke. The story takes some more notable beats but thts best left for you to discover on your own.
Fear Effect Sedna Suffers unfortunately from sticking its fingers in too many pies, not to say these pies don’t taste good. It’s part squad based strategy, part stealth and part guns blazing action game. It just doesn’t fully nail any of them.
The squad based element has you controlling allies by pausing the action with the – button. You can pause and issue commands or tell them to wait in a specific location, which would seem like a bright idea because each character has their own set of special abilities or alternatively you can switch between characters and get what needs to be done yourself much better than the A.I. would have. You also really can’t leave them up to their on devices as they tend to stand in the middle of gunfire and die rather easily or get you noticed when you would least like that to happen.
On the stealth side of things you can use cover mechanics and sneaking to quietly get up behind enemies and take them out with a one hit knife jab, as long you you don’t get caught in their vision cones a la metal gear. This works well at first in the early levels of the game but it soon becomes ineffective when larger groups of enemies show up. However that’s really the extent of it, there is no hiding in objects or shadows just behind stationary objects. Also it would be impossible to play this game stealth only. Making it well, not a stealth game.
Action in Fear Effect Sedna also suffers from not being focused on more. Aiming is not a precise as one would like and lock on aiming is automatic. This results in fire fights where you basically just keep shooting until you or your enemy falls. In the event your the one who goes down first, action is shifted to one of your teammates for you to control where hopefully you regain control over the situation and if you prove the victor your fallen ally will rise from the dead somehow.
There is also a heavy helping of puzzles in the game which may either be a bonus or another detractor depending on your preference for brain teasers. None of them are insanely complicated and their variations are nice, but on occasion the answer to some of them took a bit of looking to find the solution. Not just thinking to solve it but finding missing pieces to the puzzle in the level in places that are sometimes very hard to find.
Fear Effect Sedna is main game play graphics look pretty good for an isometric top down game with smooth animations and detailed backgrounds, and it shines with its beautiful cel shaded style. You would be hard pressed to find another game that looks like this on the switch.
The Score of the game is also extremely well done, with each track providing great atmosphere to each encounter.
Voice acting can be a little hit and miss. Characters often seem like they were having a conversation with another person entirely because the tone they were projecting was not fitting to the situation at hand, most likely due to the two voice actors recording at different times/locations or possibly being given different direction.
Fear Effect Sedna suffers from trying to be too many different kinds of games. It fails to excel at being a stealth, tactical or action game. Just because it didn’t nail all of them doesn’t mean there is no fun to be had here, gameplay may be rough around the edges but i still enjoyed my time with it, partly due to the great soundtrack and enjoyable visuals. Though it could use a bit more polish Fear Effect still has an underlying charm i could not resist. Bottom line its worth a shot especially if your Fear Effect fan like myself. Here’s hoping that the next installment Fear Effect Reinvented gets a little extra love and really kills it.