First of all, thank you Square Enix and Platinum games for participating in the Babylon Falls Closed beta test phase 3. During these hands-on exercises, I was able to access the Citadel and the Hub World.
Babylon Falls Beta – Hands-On Preview
Before entering the world of Babylon Fall, you have very limited character creation tools, although it could be because the game isn’t finished and there is plenty of time for changes. There are currently a small number of default settings that you can choose with limited sliders to change the way you look. I wish I could make my character shorter and a little chubby if I could.
There are 3 main races in beta, I spent my time playing with a Huysian who in the full version will have an ability that will allow them to approach the enemy. Agavian has the ability to suck energy away from the target.
Then the last race you can choose from is Gelelion, a mage-based class with 2 different skills, one that allows you to siphon off an enemy’s life force and another that has a DoT effect on the target and the Excess weakens time.
These abilities don’t seem to be accessible in the beta, although it looked like there was a slot to customize them in the character gear screen, so you might be able to customize your character to suit your play style with drops or vendor items.
The main hub contains an area where you can edit your character details after the main character is created. This is a nice feature that is easy to get started with and looks like it’s free.
The hub is a beautiful port city where with the ocean you can see the art style of this title really breathtaking. I was impressed with how lively the center looked with lots of vendors and guards doing their normal jobs, it felt like I had loaded myself into an active fishing village.
When exploring there is a small private room, the whole area reminds me a lot Monster hunter, especially with the fact that you unlock quests by going to a board, which isn’t bad as Monster Hunter had a very nice hub, making missions faster with less walking around.
The vendors sell common items that appear to scale with your current equipment score. If this continues in the full version it will be nice to help people catch up with their friends, but I would suggest using them only when necessary as ordinary gear has no enchantments so you may have the stats, but no bonus skills that can be very useful in later missions
Before we get into the fight, the upgrade system is a little complex and can be a little frustrating at times. You will get relics in the missions, these relics will be color coded based on rarity, although legendary / purple items will already appear to be deciphered when you pick them up.
Then at the end of the mission you will decipher the relics that you got during the fight, which is quite a lot in the current build, then you can see the stats and the enchantments but the big problem is you cannot see the effects of the Enchantments until the equipment is actually applied to the character.
So if you’re like me and get 4 of the same hammers at roughly the same level but with different enchantments you have to equip each hammer individually, look at the buffs you get and then decide which one suits your build.
I hope that in the full version we can see the effects without equipping it. The game already allows you to switch sides on the weapon screen so hopefully the effect will be added on the 2nd side of the weapon if possible.
During this beta, I was able to access the Tower of Babylon mission set, the Civic Cloister mission set. This was a series of levels from level 1 to 40, each with a completely different feel in some places, although some of them feel the same and have some environments that are copied from one another.
The number of different enemy types in this beta is pretty good, which makes me hope that the entire game has a lot of different enemies to fight against, from standard skeletal enemies to trollesque-style mobs throwing fire kegs at you .
The stages consist of running from arena to arena, with various environmental hazards ranging from poisonous plants to pitfalls that you must overcome in order to survive.
The map also has hidden chests, golden rocks, and secret buttons that can be used to get extra loot that you didn’t get from battles. These chests and other secrets seem to appear randomly on the map so they are not always in the same place over time.
In combat, however, it feels very pleasant and fluid, with a simple combination system of square and triangle for your light and heavy attacks, then L2 and R2 for your special attacks, you can equip a different type of weapon for each of these buttons, so if you want, you can with sword, club, bow and hammer or in pairs, if necessary with only 4 hammers.
The amount of different fighting styles you can have will really help you keep the Grind going as you will want to try out all of the different weapons that you can get until you find something that suits you.
Even then, certain weapons such as bows and staves have different effects depending on the weapon. For example a bow that I had allowed myself to use a spectral version of it as my special button instead of just being a special attack,
Overall, I had a good time playing the game. The only flaw I found was that a fast paced game would associate you with any level player with damage and just dying all the time.
However, this issue is likely fixed for full release, and it could also be due to the limited number of players as it is a closed beta. In the end, I finished the level 40 dungeon, which was the last one at this stage, and I had fun. I would recommend everyone to look out for this title and maybe pre-order it.