NieR: Automata Xbox One X Review

NieR: Automata is a true masterpiece that shines throughout, and a must play for all PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One owners.

By Grayshadow, Posted 06 Jul 2018

The post-apocalyptic world of NieR: Automata centers on mystery, destruction, and rebirth. Humanity has been driven from Earth by a race of Aliens and their machine servants. Androids serve as humanity’s last hope in taking back their home in this well-executed and beautifully designed adventure that houses a deeply enriching and emotional charged narrative. NieR: Automata is one of the greatest masterpieces of this generation and now Xbox One fans can now see why.

NieR: Automata has players in control of a female combat expert Android named 2B who is part of YoRHa, a group of Androids created by humans tasked with taking back Earth from hostile machines and their alien creators who forced humanity to retreat to the moon. Joining 2B is 9S, a male intelligence gathering Android called a Scanner who specializes in hacking and retrieving information. The duo starts off as strictly professionals with 2B’s stoic attitude slowly broken down thanks to 9S’ humility. Thanks to powerful performances and outstanding voice-actors you can’t help but connect to each character, whether machine or android.

The world of NieR: Automata is full of empty buildings, homicidal machines, and large stenches of mostly empty lands with machines, wild animals, and flora taking over humanity's homes. The size of the world can feel intimidating at first after running through the environment you’ll quickly grasp the locations of each area. Much of the game’s numerous side missions require a lot of backtracking with repetitive objectives such as collecting items and killing targets. Despite being generic the narrative of each of these minor characters add substance to the world. Providing insight into either 9S, 2B or the many minor characters throughout the world.

Speaking of the world the quests provided throughout the adventure can be difficult to locate. The map usually provides a general location for each objective but in areas, with high vertical ledges, it can be difficult to find each specific area. In addition, the map doesn’t provide a clear indication of which route to take for specific points. Since fast-traveling is limited to specific HUBs you’ll end up running large distances if you find yourself walking the wrong way.

Nier: Automata,NoobFeed,Square Enix,Platinum Games,

What truly sells NieR: Automata is the magnificent story. A beautiful combination of emotional dialogue and massive twists help amplify the difficult issues on identity, life, and death that constantly surface. The soundtrack adds to the intensity by providing complementary music that strengthens every boss battle, cutscene, and even just running around. The adventure remains a constant thrill throughout but not without peppering moments of intense dread.

The combat system of NieR: Automata combines the fast-paced style found in other Platinum Games like Bayonetta and Metal Gear Solid: Revengeance. Solid controls, quick switching between weapons, and solid response to each hit will encourage you to fight each battle instead of skipping past potential targets. Dodging is complemented with flares of color, sound, and after-images of the 2B or 9S followed by a quick attack. Your Pods, which can fire like a machine gun from afar, can be outfitted with unique enhancements for special attacks that add to the combat system.

It sounds complicated, but the system is very easy to understand. You’re expected to go beyond the 2 main attack inputs, especially later. 2B and 9S can equip various weapons with a distinct style of attacks. Chips are available for additional support that can complement speed, strength, automatic healing items, and more. If you happen to die all your experience is lost unless you can return to the place of your death. You’ll also see the bodies of other fallen players on the ground which can be revived to fight for you or gain extra experience and items.

Nier: Automata,NoobFeed,Square Enix,Platinum Games,

Sometimes you’ll encounter an on-rails shooting segment similar where 9S and 2B use flight units to face down flying enemies. Just like the on-foot segments these controls wonderfully and control just as well. With weapons complementing what type of Pod firing mode you’ve chosen.

All of this allows 2B and 9S to collect different parts to upgrade their existing weapons or gain experience to level up. Leveling up serves little purpose other than having the ability to take down larger foes. Instead, much of the customization comes from the chip variety and what type of fighting style you want. You can choose from an optimized set for combat, defense, or balanced or customize your own chipset. Since everything, even basic options such as health bars and minimaps must be chipped 2B and 9S players are given a wide selection of options to play around with. 

Weapons can be customized as well by collecting parts. Different options of swords, lances, and fists are provided to the player. 2B can equip 2 weapons at a time while 9S can only use 1 but has access to hacking, which allows him to take control or self-destruct enemies after completing an Asteroids minigame. Since you cannot play solely as 9S or 2B you’ll have to decide what pattern for the AI to commit to. Either passive, aggressive, ranged, or something entirely different. The AI does an excellent job of performing their job but is not powerful enough that you can relax. It’s the right balance of helpful but not superpower.

Nier: Automata,NoobFeed,Square Enix,Platinum Games,

NieR: Automata is one of the most exciting and depressing adventure games to come out this generation. The story tackles several sensitive issues that people have been discussing in real-time for centuries in one outstanding adventure full of memorable moments. The robust combat system made each fight exciting and fast-paced with increasingly more difficult opponents that test your skills throughout. NieR: Automata is a true masterpiece that shines throughout, and a must play for all PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One owners.

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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General Information

Platform(s): Xbox One, PS4, PC
Publisher(s): Square Enix
Developer(s): PlatinumGames
Genres: Role-Playing
Themes: Fantasy
Release Date: 2017-12-31

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