A new video about the upcoming Astral Chain shows off 35 minutes of gameplay, including combat, world traversal, and even a large boss battle. The video included a conversation with game director at Platinum Games Takahisa Taura who helped explain what players can expect from the action title.
Platinum Games has developed some of the most beloved action game franchises including Nier: Automota and Bayonetta. Its most recent game, Switch exclusive Astral Chain, features Platinum's signature action-based combo gameplay with the addition of a dimension-hopping plot.
The gameplay video shows a little bit of everything players can expect to do in Astral Chain, but it begins with backstory and lore. Players will choose between twin brother and sister characters as their protagonist. The main character works for a section of the Police called The Neuron which fights dimension-hopping chimera who pull people into the Astral Plane. The Neuron will fight against these chimera using a connection with creatures from the Astral Plane called Legion, which serve as the core mechanic of the game.
The demo, which provided a larger taste of Astral Chain than seen at E3, started by showing off some of these Legion in combat. Players can attack enemies with a police baton that doubles as a gun. While they do that, they will fill a stamina bar, and once the bar turns blue, they can summon their Legion to fight alongside of them. The Legion fights on its own, but players can watch for flashes and use well-timed button presses to initiate sync combos. These powerful attacks let the player and the Legion come together.
Nintendo showed off four different Legion during the stream. The Sword, the first Legion the player will get, fights up close, using a sword. The Arrow will offer ranged attacks. The Arm, kind of a brutish, tank-type, will rely on melee attacks and can also throw heavy object. Finally, The Beast will rely on speed.
The Legion each have special uses outside of combat as well. The Arrow, for example, can shoot to open pathways. The Arm can lift heavy objects. The Beast, which looks like a giant wolf (yes, you can pet it) will serve as a mount for the player to ride around, but it can also sniff out clues. The gameplay section showed off in the trailer featured The Beast hacking into security terminals "sniffing out" the last known location of the character the players needed to track down. The whole game has a technology theme.
The game's environment looks a lot like Nier Automata and features red-toned industrial areas. Players can also jump into the astral plane, which has a more simple, geometric feel, with rectangles, crystals, and a metallic sheen. The Astral Plane featured some mild platforming. Neither area showed Astral Chain's usable toilets.
Finally, the demo ends with a fight against a giant boss battle. The boss fills the entire screen when up close, and uses the entire play area for all of its different phases. It even climbs on walls. The battle looked varied and interesting, with the boss evolving as its health went down.
The game looks like typical Platinum Games fare, and should give fans something to hold them over until they finally get more details on Bayonetta 3.
Astral Chain launches on August 30, exclusively for the Nintendo Switch.