Abzu Review (PS4)

Abzu

I knew that I wanted this game the moment that it came out. Mostly because it had the same Journey feel to it. This was probably because it was directed and composed by the same people who created Journey. I could never really justify the price tag that came with it though for some reason, but I did finally pick this game up when it was free thanks to PS+. Keep reading to see if it was all it was hyped up to be.

Abzu puts you in the role of a faceless diver. It’ll be your job to restore the ocean to it’s normal state as you freely move around and interact with the different species that the ocean has to offer. Throughout this journey, no pun indented, you’ll basically be drawn deeper into the ocean because of a great white shark. This shark has something to show you and you’ll discover an ancient technology within the ruins of the ocean. Will this be the divers downfall or just the beginning?

Even though this is truly the underwater Journey because it deals with life and death and then rebirth, it was still an amazing game and just an amazing experience. I will say that the game is a little slow at times, but when it picks up, it really picks up and just grips you so that you want to finish. Like Journey, this game is short, but it’s all about how you play it. If you just wanted to play the story you could probably do so in about 90 minutes, but if you actually want to explore and see everything the ocean has to offer along with the different species of ocean life you can end up spending hours in this underwater playground.

While the game and the story of the game is just beautiful, the playability of this game is it’s downfall. The controls are just frustrating as you try to move around the ocean to the point where you want to toss your controller out the window. You constantly have to hold down the R2 button in order to stay underwater and keep on a path while pressing X to swim faster and then using the right stick to direct where you are going. Sometimes you’ll have to adjust your view using the left stick and this can cause you to move up instead of down. Even after I finished the game and went back to get the collectibles, I still couldn’t get a hang of the controls and this had me extremely frustrated. Other than that the game was glitch free and ran beautifully.

The graphics for this game were just beautiful as you explored this underwater area. The ocean wildlife was a little more cartoonish than real looking, but that didn’t matter. Each creature was still beautifully crafted and it showed that a lot of time and effort went into this game to make sure that it looked beautiful.

Finish this game and do everything it has to offer to get yourself a total of 12 extremely easy trophies. You’ll have to play this game about twice, even though you could just use a walkthrough for the collectibles on the first go around, but that way kind of sucks. You want to experience this game first. Get as many collectibles as you can and then go back using the chapter select to clean up what you missed. If you use a walkthrough from the start, you end up missing the game and all it has to offer.

Surprisingly there was no multiplayer for this game and I have to say that I kind of missed it. I liked how Journey made you meet up with random people who you didn’t know until the end of the game and I felt like this game was missing this aspect since it was strictly a single player experience. I guess the single player experience made sense for the overall story line, but I thought it would have been nice to have a random person around every now and again to experience the game.

Overall I give this game a 3.5 out of 5.

What’s Great:
+ It’s underwater Journey which means you’ll deal with themes like life, death, and then rebirth.
+ The graphics are beautiful and game was just beautifully crafted.
+ This game is bug and glitch free so you can sit back and enjoy the experience.

What’s Not So Great:
The controls are horrible and will make you want to throw your controller out the window.
This game is seriously lacking the multiplayer aspect (never thought I would say that) that Journey had and this game would have stood out a little more if it had that.

This game is seriously one of the most beautiful games that I’ve played since Journey, but on that note it had a problem with controller issues and it was lacking the multiplayer aspect of Journey. I loved the underwater feel and loved the interaction with the ocean wildlife, but the controls made me want to give up on this game a lot. They were fickle at times and just plain frustrating. If you didn’t get this game free via PS+, I would say that the $19.99 price tag for this game is way too much for a game that you can complete in less than a day. Once you finish this game and get all the trophies, there really is no replay value. I know a lot of time and effort went into this game but that price tag is a huge one. If you didn’t get it for free, then I would say to at least wait for a sale because unlike Journey, this is one of those games that are beautiful, but also missable if you don’t have the funds.

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This Week in Trophies 06-18-2017 – 06-24-2017

With work being easy as pie this week and my web design client being taken care of about mid week after the disaster last week, this left me the perfect opportunity to game as much as possible this week and I totally did. I felt like I played more games this week than I have in a while and it actually felt good. Without even knowing it I hit my milestone 7,500th trophy this week which I really still can’t believe. I didn’t stop there and powered on though so keep reading to see how I did this week.

Abzu – 100%

I finally finished this game this week! One more game that was removed in my ever growing backlog. As always though, I’ll be giving you my full review of this game so come back Wednesday to hear about my experience with the game and what I thought about it.

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Killing Floor 2 – 18%

So the servers for this game absolutely suck and it seems I can never get into a game, but when I do I usually spend anywhere from 30 minutes to about an hour and a half playing this game. It’s not a bad game, but it’s not a great game either. I do enjoy just sitting there and playing without having to actually think and that’s one of the things that draws me to this game.

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Gems of War – 88%

With the new patch for this game, came new trophies and I was like Ugh. I’ve been playing this game daily because of the guild wars, but have now played even more as I try to finish up this ever growing trophy list which just seems impossible. The good news is that I did finish all of the new patched in trophies, which were just a bunch of crap really since they were just add-on’s to previous trophies.

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Rise of the Tomb Raider – 14%

I’ve been slowly making my way through this game for the past few weeks, really wishing that I had played Diablo III instead, but I’m making some progress. Or at least I think I’m making progress. With this game I really have no idea. Anyway, when I do play I enjoy the time that I play, but I’m still not sure about this game. Am I close to the end, am I not close to the end? I have no idea as I’ve now been sucked into some DLC stuff. Anyway, I’ll keep powering through to see how it goes.

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Dungeon Defenders II – 23%

I downloaded and started this game this week because it was free and I really loved the original Dungeon Defenders. I spent hours upon hours playing the original with some former friends and I thought that this game would breathe some new life and give me some new memories, but so far I’m not that into it. I’ll keep playing to finish up the trophies and stuff, but it just isn’t as good as the original which I do miss playing because someone had to shut off the servers.

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And that was it for this week. A pretty productive week, and I kind of plan on next week being the same thing. I plan on continuing my Rise of the Tomb Raider playthrough, get some Killing Floor 2 in when I can, and play some more Dungeon Defenders II to finish the game up. It is the end of the month so I am a little weary about starting a new game, but you never know because when I get that itch of wanting to start something new, it just can’t be stopped. I’ll let you know how things turn out next week.

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This Week in Trophies 06-11-2017 – 06-17-2017

I’m going to be honest and say that this week basically just sucked when it came to trophies. I really had absolutely no time to play because of real world problems. Not only do I work one of those super adult desk job type jobs which makes me think every once in a while, when did I get so old, but I also do some freelance Web Design and Development. While I thought I would have a nice week of playing video games when I was done with my job, turns out the freelance stuff wasn’t so easy this time around as one of the sites I manage had the shit hit the fan and it was up to me to clean it up. Anyway, I did manage to get some gaming in and here’s what I was able to get.

Abzu – 50%

I finished up the main story to this game and am now going back to get the trophies that I missed. I have to say that I really enjoyed this underwater Journey game and by the end felt a deep connection to the game that I didn’t think I would feel. I’ll get into that more once I eventually finish it and write the review, but for now that’s all you’re getting.

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Rise of the Tomb Raider – 12%

I never knew it would take this much time to play a Tomb Raider game. Time was not on my side this week and I was barely able to play this game because of my lack of time. I’m kind of enjoying my time playing, but the jury is still out on this game and I think I’m towards the end so I don’t know what to think.

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Killing Floor 2 – 2%

Why did I start this game this week? Two reasons, one because it was recommended to me and two because I was having such a frustrating day that I needed something that was mindless and fun in order to relax. Mission accomplished on both ends. While I can’t see myself getting lost in this game, I can see myself going back every once in a while to have some mindless fun.

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And that was it for this week. I’m thinking that this upcoming week is going to be more of the same because I still have some Web Site stuff to figure out and my clients are a pain in the ass. Pro-tip from a seasoned Web Designer, never ever do stuff for so-called “friends.” It doesn’t work out. EVER. And if something goes wrong you’re always to blame even if you aren’t. Anyway, back to the gaming stuff. I’m hoping I can finish Abzu this week while continuing to play Rise of the Tomb Raider and some Killing Floor 2 when I have the chance. Chances are that I won’t be starting anything new any time soon, but you never know. I’ll let you know how my week turns out next week.

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This Week in Trophies 06-04-207 – 06-10-2017

After a few lackluster weeks, I really felt like I had to amp it up with the trophy hunting because there are a bunch of games in my backlog and I really want to finish them up and move on. Anyway, I feel like I did a good job. Not dragging this out, let’s see what trophies I actually did get this week.

MouseCraft – 100%

I took most of the day last Sunday to finish this game up and had a really great time doing so. Like always, I’ll have my full review posted within the next couple of weeks to let you know what I really thought about the game.

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Rise of the Tomb Raider – 11%

I started this game this week after a big debate of if I was going to play this game or Diablo III: Reaper of Souls. So far, I think it’s ok. It’s not the greatest Tomb Raider game, but it’s not the worst either. I’m still not far enough into it to actually judge it, but I am playing it when I can.

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Abzu – 15%

I also started playing this game this week because I like having those smaller games to play along with the big games since I’m never sure how much time I’m going to have to game. Anyway, I’m kind of liking this under water Journey like game even though the controls are a little tricky and at the moment I’m not sure what the whole point of the game is.

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And that was it for this week. Not bad trophy wise, and I did get a lot of game play in so I’m a happy camper. This upcoming week, I plan on finishing Abzu as well as continuing my journey with Rise of the Tomb Raider in order to see where that leads me. Going off topic for a moment, I didn’t realize that Rise of the Tomb Raider has 125 trophies. Seriously? That’s a lot of trophies. Anyway, I’ll probably also be starting Killing Floor 2 because Matt @TheAlbumWeb has told me how absolutely wonderful this game is despite the fact that the trailer looks like crap. I’ll let you know next week if Matt was right about Killing Floor 2 and what other trophies I was able to get.

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