Fate/EXTELLA: The Umbral Star – Review | North American Version

By Nate

Have you ever wondered what a Warriors game would be like if they replaced all of the generals with colorful anime characters? Or if all of the environments popped with beautiful, vibrant colors? Well, Fate/Extella might be the game for you.

Fate/Extella’s universe takes place in an all new world called Extella and after the events of the Holy Grail War and Fate/Extra. This future is ruled by an all mighty lunar super computer labelled as the Moon Cell Amaton. The large cast of characters (from Fate/Stay Night, Fate/Apocrypha, Fate/Grand Order and other Fate Games) must fight for dominance over a digital realm which is known as SERAPHa. Players can take the perspective of three different characters – Nero, Tamamo and Attila.

In addition to these 3 characters, there are several side stories which players can also play through which focuses on the other servants of the game. Each main story takes 6-10 hours to complete (closer to 6 hours if you skip cutscenes). The stories for each character are fantastic with their English subtitles and Japanese voice actors. There is comedy and wittiness to some of the characters. There is also a lot of content to follow, along with lots of cutscenes. There is plenty to do in the game and the story is just a small part of the fun. Another quick note is that if you played the Japanese version, all of progress is carried over to the North American Version of the game.

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Gameplay is fast-paced and magnificent. Players must defeat waves upon hordes of enemies (Just like Dynasty Warriors…). You must slice and dice your way through objectives and capture bases. Once you complete a certain objective, you’ll win. If you die or lose too many of your bases and soldiers, you will lose.

This is where the game feels unbalanced. For example, you’ll just capture a checkpoint and then move on to the next one. Then you’ll have to go back to recapture a base because your AI companions failed to keep the base. On harder difficulties, it makes it unusually hard to win because you didn’t fail, but the computer allies did. The game isn’t particularly hard in combat either. At times, it feels like you’ll be babysitting instead of playing a game.

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Fate/Extella has your typical hack n’ slash elements. You have normal attacks, fast attacks (Triangle button and it feels similar to the Samurai Warriors franchise.), special attacks (hits multiple enemies and your target enemy), and a special attack mode that makes you practically invisible for a limited time. Sounds great right? Yes, this is the best part about the game. It has a fast and furious style of gameplay mechanics. You can also block, use skills, and quick move too.

Hundreds of enemy minions will appear on the screen at once along with captain/objective enemies. Sometimes you’ll have to kill the captains multiple times, but it is enjoyable. It can be very repetitive so players should try getting better and obtaining new combos and abilities for more fun. Bosses are actually challenging when you have their level set on normal or a higher difficulty. When you complete levels, you’ll receive a ranking in several different areas (damage taken, captures, etc.). The max is EX and your typical A, B, C, & D.

When players aren’t battling or watching the story play out, they can adjust which abilities they want, talk to their character, create/buy accessories, and sleep. There always seems to be a lot that players can do in Fate/Extella. If you want to fine-tune your skills, you may also try free mode with any of the characters that you unlocked through the story.

Graphically, Fate/Extella is not a masterpiece but looks decent enough. I’ve seen better looking graphics from other anime style games. Some characters look better than others and the same goes for the environments. I didn’t notice a lot of dips in framerate so at least that seemed to hold up.

Overall, Fate/Extella is a fantastic fresh take on the hack n’ slash genre. I enjoyed the fast gameplay and all of the different things that it brings to the table. The graphics aren’t the greatest, but the game makes up for it with its extremely fun gameplay.

8.5/10 – Fantastic hack n’ slash with lots of content.

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