Technomancer bites off more than it can chew
Published 23/07/2016 | 00:00
Confronted with the name 'The Technomancer', if your first instinct is to run in the opposite direction, you would be hard pushed to find anyone opposed to the idea of judging this particular game by its cover.
Attached to this unfortunate title is an equally unfortunate gameplay experience, where developers Spiders have seemingly went out of their way to stuff every Sci-Fi Thriller cliché into this mixed and slightly boring bag.
There is a lot to do in The Technomancer. There's an in-depth crafting system wherein you can create new weapons, armor, and items, and then create modifications for each item to increase their power and usefulness.
There are multiple fighting styles, each with its own skill tree, which allow for a wide selection of combat strategies. There's a morality system, lots of missions, and an large variety of locations to explore.
Indeed, everything-on paper, at least-points to an expansive, if not terribly original Western role-playing experience. There's a lot of activities at your fingertips, but options alone can't save The Technomancer. The problem is simple: the game does a lot of things all at once, just none of them particularly well.
Where The Witcher handles crowd control so wonderfully, Technomancer's combat does not sit in a flattering light. I died often, and I couldn't always tell exactly why. When I finally did make it past a combat situation that had been kicking my ass, I couldn't always say what it was that I did differently. I never felt fully in control of my character, and that's a real problem in an RPG that focuses so much on combat.
While combat is an enormous pain, it is by no means the least disappointing aspect of The Technomancer. The premise and the lore of this world is fantastic, but the hollow cities and derelict slums are depressingly empty. Running through the sprawling world, you will meet NPC's who are both deaf and mute. For a game that claims to be an RPG, this is nigh-on inexcusable.
It would be nice to be able to give the developers at least some credit for taking on such a large project. When a game this big feels so unfinished, it usually feels like a case of the developers biting off more thatn they can chew, and The Technomancer is no exception.
A solid daytime-television effort at a genre that is dominated by heavy-hitters.