Sometimes you come across a game that is a mish mash of several genres, in some cases it could simply be two or three genres loosely joined together such as a platformer that turns into a shoot-em-up. However, imagine a game which combines one of my favourite genres which is the point and click adventures genre with turn based strategy, real-time based strategy, RPG, tower defence and also the becoming more popular genre of visual novels. Well that game is 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim.
13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim plot is a fairly complicated but very well written and spoken performance. In 1985 Japan, Kurabe, Fuyusaka and Amiguchi end up sharing each others dreams. This involves them fighting old wars against the Kaiju or seeing future versions of themselves. They are seen by Morimura a nurse, who Kurabe learns is medicating students at their school with an unknown substance. As the story progresses in 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim you find out the characters are part of five different “Sectors”, these replicate a specific era future or past. In 2188 which is meant to be the current time, a nanomachine virus is destroying the Earth. Leaving only 15 people living in a space colony, which includes the 13 characters who you play. Each character in 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim has intertwining story arcs, which as you play reveal parts of the story. Each arc ends with them joining the final battle. When the enemies aka Deimos arrive, the 13 characters i.e. the 13 sentinels band together to save Earth.
So as you can see the 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim plot has several stories you need play through. There’s a fair bit of time jumping and sci-fi included so it’ll take a few hours to figure out what’s going on. 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim is effectively split into 3 parts. Remembrance mode is where the story is uncovered. Analysis mode collects all the information you’ve found whilst Destruction mode is where you suit up in your mechs and battle the enemy from an overhead perspective across large scale cities.
The adventure visual novel sections are well developed and is where you get a sense of the story, better than most visual novels to be honest. The battling elements are where you to put your strategising to best use. You get to choose up to 6 of your mechs for battle, each one has an advantage over another or has a specific skill set as such as being good at melee etc. Blowing up the enemy is quite satisfying but as you progress it’s an area that probably becomes the least interesting to play because it doesn’t change a great deal, it becomes a little repetitive. When you win you are rewarded with special chips that can be used to upgrade your Sentinels.
Musically 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim follows a techno route, which is something you find generally in games like this which are set in the future. The battle sections are a lot more electronic comparted to the slower more focused adventure sections. The voice acting is excellent throughout 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim and has a really polished feel to it. In a game like 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim sometimes there is minimal voice acting which makes the experience less engrossing but in 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim it adds a lot to the adventure. Visually 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim is really nice to look at, especially in the non battle sections. The destruction scenes are reasonably detailed landscapes containing your mechs and enemies with lots of explosions and displays. The adventure exploring sections have a more visual novel fell to them, characters and areas of interest are layered on top of well detailed backgrounds.
13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim is an excellent game which a thoroughly involving story which takes some time to get your head round, once you do though you’re going to really enjoy the experience. The story sucks you in whilst the games mechanics give you a several different challenging but entertaining experiences. If you want to kill 20-30 hours and enjoy an enthralling game then you won’t go far wrong with 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim.