GamingReview: Hellpoint

Review: Hellpoint

Curse of the dreaded switch port

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Hellpoint, available on PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac and Nintendo Switch

Hellpoint is a dark and challenging action RPG set in a heavily atmospheric sci-fi universe where the line between science and occult is blurred.

Nintendo.com

Story

Have you ever wondered what would happen if you crossed a game like dark souls and warframe? You would get Hellpoint.

In Hellpoint you are a human created by the mysterious Author to traverse the space station Irid Novo to find out what has caused the incident known as The Merge.

Irid Novo is a huge space station with many secrets and areas to explore and for the most part the player is able to explore at their own will. The player will discover many foes including various bosses which may require some prior weapon and armour upgrades in order to truly stand a chance. There are many different weapon and armour types and each weapon has its own special ability once the player has been able to master it.

Along the way players will find the odd hint (in the form of a glowing green hand) which will either give the player a nudge in the right direction or offer a tip. Occasionally you will also speak to The Author who will guide you after bigger milestones but other than that the player is mostly left to their own devices and exploring is crucial to progress the story.

Due to the exploration and minimal hints, any players that are not already accustomed to this genre of game may struggle to advance through the story quickly and like myself, may have to check a guide once in a while to make sure they’re on the right track. It’s very easy to mistakingly walk into a boss fight that your character is not equipped to win.

Irid Novo is also constantly revolving around a black hole in real time which creates an interesting dynamic, altering enemy stats and positioning as well as bosses themselves.

Visuals

One thing I love about Hellpoint is the art style. As soon as i booted up the game I was met with a dark and eery atmosphere with character design not too dissimilar to Warframe. As a fan of everything horror based I love the vibe that this game gives off. At times though some areas of Irid Novo can be hard to navigate due to the dark art style as well as some areas having a very similar look and feel.

As with other similar games like Bloodborne and Dark souls, Hellpoint also has very menacing enemy and boss designs to make them every bit as terrifying as they are hard to kill.

Although the art style is probably one of the stand out features of Hellpoint, along with performance, they also serve as its main downfalls. As with many other games Hellpoint unfortunately suffers from the dreaded curse of the switch port. Not only are there constant frame rate issues and stutters but the resolution has taken a big downgrade to accommodate the specs of the switch. At times this does unfortunately take away from the experience and can becoming disengaging for the player.

This then becomes one of the situations where I feel like I have to defend the switch because it is not intended as a console to play AAA titles at maximum performance. The switch is a console for a great on the go or family experience which for the most part it nails perfectly and with Hellpoint if you can ignore minor resolution issues, then it does still make for a great handheld experience.

Combat

The general combat experience for Hellpoint is a familiar one for fans of the genre. This consists of light attack, heavy attack, block, dodge and abilities such as healing. Using this, it is up to the player to learn enemy patterns and stats as well as being cautious about stamina level, one extra move could drain your stamina and leave you vulnerable.

I myself have not had much experience with this genre of game so admittedly it took me many attempts to perfect the combat style and many many more attempts to finally beat a boss. For players that enjoy a challenge Hellpoint will not disappoint.

Summary

Hellpoint is a familiar experience that a lot of players have become accustomed to. The art style is very dark and eery with menacing boss designs. Just like similar games it’s a very tough experience and not for the faint hearted. For fans of the genre it’s a great experience on a handheld but unfortunately it is let down by the obvious downgrade and FPS issues.

SUMMARY

+ Amazing atmosphere, dark and eery really pays off
+ Good familiar combat
+ A challenge without being frustrating
- Switch port runs badly in some cases

(Reviewed on Switch, also available on PS4, Xbox One, PC and Mac)
Derren Bennett
Derren Bennett
I’m Derren, 25 and ever since I was young I was obsessed with everything movie, tech and gaming related. I’m more than happy to accept the title of nerd! I’m also a very opinionated person and I hope that my writing will be fun and engaging for readers but most importantly it will be real and honest.

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Review: Hellpoint+ Amazing atmosphere, dark and eery really pays off <br/> + Good familiar combat <br/> + A challenge without being frustrating <br/> - Switch port runs badly in some cases <br/> <br/> (Reviewed on Switch, also available on PS4, Xbox One, PC and Mac)