Forspoken review – why our verdict won’t be ready before launch

Forspoken – initial signs weren’t good (pic: Square Enix)

Square Enix He intentionally withheld review copies of the Forspoken new game, which doesn’t bode well for its Tuesday release.

This evening is the official PlayStation 5 review embargo and a Forspoken PC exclusive, but our review won’t be ready by then, for the simple reason that we haven’t sent out a copy yet.

At first, we thought this was because we made it clear that we weren’t affected by the game when we attended a match Practical preview in December, but several other sites, both in the UK and the US, appear to have not been sent out copies either, and if there are any reviews today, they are likely to only be from the largest US sites.

There is usually only one thing this means: the game is useless. However, since we can’t say for sure until we’ve played everything, this week will be intentionally short on informed opinion on the game, especially ahead of launch.

It also appears that PC copies of the game are not being sent at all, which indicates certain problems for this version of the game – which already suffers from unreasonably high system requirements.

Although it’s uncommon, this kind of thing is unheard of from major publishers, but it doesn’t always mean that the game is terrible, just that they don’t think it will be well reviewed.

It was one of the last times that happened on this scale with Borderlands 3which was by no means a bad game, just a bland sequel with an obnoxious sense of humor, which the publisher correctly predicted most reviewers wouldn’t find funny.

Previews for Forspoken didn’t seem to be negative overall, though most people aren’t inclined to put a boot into preview unless the game looks unequivocally bad.

For us, it was one of the worst hands-on previews we’ve played in a long time, not because it was so bad but because the game didn’t get much from the fact that it’s a brand-new IP with no predecessors or license to hold it back.

Despite this freedom, it came across as a generic role-playing game set in a very open world, with an uninteresting story setup, annoying main characters, and an uninspired central gameplay gimmick.

The game features a magical parkour system that allows you to automatically move over any low-level obstacles as you move forward. Functionally, that means you don’t need a horse to get around, but it doesn’t feel particularly satisfying, and for what we played, it’s not very fun or accurate.

The combat is okay, with the promise of over 100 spells, but as with parkour, it’s not particularly entertaining and made look even worse by some very generic-looking enemies.

Forspoken – the graphics aren’t very good either (Image: Square Enix)

We spent a good few hours with the game, but all of our complaints may become less of an issue as the story goes on, although the free demo on the PlayStation Store couldn’t have been more encouraging.

It was different than what we played – which seemed to be just parts of the main game coming to an end – but it went so badly that the producer had to Make a statement Saying that in terms of task structure, it was not representative of the final product.

The demo then got an update that changed how the lock works and changed things like text sizes, which isn’t the kind of last-minute change that inspires confidence.

Then there is the main character problem. For Square Enix, the lead is a black woman named Frey and the fictional world she finds herself in is very diverse, in terms of race and gender (all the main bosses appear to be women).

But Fry of New York and its dialogue, and its magic bracelet, are awful, with every fish-out-of-water cliche you could imagine and endless, exhausting F-bombs.

We didn’t notice it at the time but it seems there is already an accessibility option to turn off the occasional dialogue for the pair. The fact that this was really necessary should have set off some alarm bells with the developer, as it’s a terrible waste of an opportunity to have a main character who is nothing but a generic white guy.

Forspoken is probably better than the demo and our hands-on suggests, but we won’t be able to tell you until after it actually rolls out. So, in the meantime, we’re going to be very careful and unless you really like the demo, it’s best to wait until there is a critical consensus.

We’ll update this article with any review results released on Monday afternoon, but Forsboken itself will launch on Tuesday, January 24th for PlayStation 5 and PC.

to update:

The results are in, and as it seemed inevitable, the game was not well reviewed. Present Metacritic Score It’s only 66, which is pretty low for a major release.

Who exactly got a review copy also seems pretty random, with plenty of sites we’ve never heard of, yet many sites were obviously left out on purpose – perhaps because Square Enix thought they were more likely to give a negative score.

If they were looking to score well on Metacritic before launch despite their failure, with the following sample of the game’s reception:

Detective game: 7.5/10
GamesRadar+: 2.5 / 5
Eurogamer: no recommendation

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more : Forspoken’s demo isn’t actually quite the same as the final game the producer says it is

more : Forspoken Preview – Square Enix’s new action role-player

more : Forspoken’s latest trailer has become a fallback meme factory

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