Nier: Automata Review

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Posted: 5 weeks ago, last updated 8 days ago.

Author: Andy Robertson.

OverviewOverview

Nier: Automata is a role-playing game, that span off from the Drakengard series. It's set in an alternate future where there is a war between alien machines and human androids. But this isn't a game about winning the war. It's more focused on the plight of a combat android, her companion, and a fugitive prototype.

It's a hard game. You explore the world on foot, encountering characters and combat as you go. The battles are fought in real-time using a range of attacks. As well as this there are platforming elements as well as more pure shooting sections. As you progress you gain experience and level up health, defence, and attack power. Alongside the main story are side quests and shops in which you can purchase items to help you on your way.

The story branches depending on your choices and how well you do in combat. There are 26 different endings in total so players often complete the game multiple times to experience these.

Running through both this story and the interactive elements are unusual themes drawn from the plight of these robots in the midst of the war. This takes it to the heights of the history of philosophy, challenges human exceptionalism and even touches on the meaning of life.

This is kept from feeling too airy fairy by being rooted in a harsh narrative about these sexualized battle androids. As Chris Plante put it, "you kill robots who spend their days raising children, having sex, reciting literature, building and destroying societies, and obsessively seeking any meaning whatsoever. You claw for the meanings of being and not being. And all of this, somehow, despite the odds, works."

DetailsDetails

Rating: PEGI 18+, ESRB MATURE 17+

Release Date: 23/02/2017, updated in 2018

Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative and Shooting.

Developer: @NieRGame

 

CommitmentCommitment

Duration: This game will take between 29 hours and 35 hours to complete. Although to see everything and multiple endings means that some players invest 100's of hours.
 
Players: This is a single player game.

CostsCosts

Additional in-game purchases are offered for items that enhance the experience.

You can purchase cosmetic items for the game. Pod Skins: Play System, Cardboard Retro Grey, Retro Red, Grimoire Weiss, Amazarashi Head and Machine Mask Accessory. Outfits: Revealing Outfit, Young Man’s Outfit, Destroyer Outfit. There are also additional sub-quests that can be purchased: three different battle challenges.
  • Nier: Automata Game of the Yorha Edition includes the DLC
  • Nier: Automata Become as Gods Edition includes the DLC

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Rated PEGI 18 due to frequent scenes of strong, graphic violence and strong language. Violence varies from non-realistic fight scenes between humanoids and robots to more graphic cinematic scenes involving human-like characters being impaled on large swords with large amounts of blood and injuries being depicted.
Strong language including the word ‘*!@?*’ and its derivatives can be found throughout the game.

This game has been rated ESRB MATURE 17+.

AccessibilityAccessibility

Accessibility for this game is as follows:

Difficulty

How you can adjust the challenge of play, and assistance the game offers when you fail or get stuck.

Select Difficulty: Select difficulty from a range of presets.

Low Pressure: Game tasks aren’t time-limited or with a high emphasis on performance. Or there is a low pressure play-mode available.

Assistance With Direction: Indication of where to go next with arrows, cookie trail and the like.

Reading

How much reading or listening comprehension is required, and how accessible this is.

Moderate Reading: Moderate reading required.

Any spoken content has subtitles: All spoken content has subtitles, or there is no speech in the game.

Speaker Indicator: Captions or icons and speech bubbles indicate who is speaking.

Some Dialogue is Voiced: Some of the game dialogue and narrative is voice acted.

Controls

How you control the game, different options for alternative inputs and whether you can remap these settings to suit your needs.

Multiple Buttons & Two Sticks: Can play with multiple buttons and two sticks.

Mouse and Keys: Can play with mouse and multiple keys.

Motion Controls Not Required: You don’t need motion controls to play the game.

Remap Controls

You can customise the controls for the game as follows:

Select Preset Controller Mappings: Select preset button layouts.

Remap Buttons: Re-map all buttons/keys.

Remap Mouse and Keyboard: Remap mouse and keyboard.

Remap One Action to Multiple Buttons: Map multiple buttons to a single action.

Remap Game Menu Access: You can remap buttons to pause and access game menu.

Invert X/Y Axis: You can invert the direction required to control looking and aiming.

Controller Vibration

Vibration Optional: Controller vibration not used in the game or you can disable it.

Informative Vibration: Controller vibration indicates aspects of the game, echoing visual and audio cues.

Adjust Mouse/Stick Sensitivity: Adjust how sensitive mouse/stick controls are.

Image

How you can adjust the visuals to suit your needs, and offer additional information if you can't hear the game.

Audio Cues for Visual Events: Audio is provided to indicate visual events.

Colourblind friendly: Game doesn’t rely on colour or can switch to colourblind friendly mode.

Adjust Head Up Display: Remove or resize head-up display to remove distraction and make more visible.

Audio

How you can adjust the audio of the game and whether audio cues compensate for aspects of the game that are hard to see.

Balance Audio Levels: Set music and game sound effects separately.

Visual Cues for Audio Events: Text or other visual indicators of audio events.

Play Without Hearing: No audio cues are necessary to play the game well

System Settings

Windows has extensive accessibility features. Some, like colour correction, work with games. Lots of accessibility software can be used with PC games, from voice recognition to input device emulators. PlayStation 4 has a range of accessibility settings. Some are system only, some work in games (invert colours and button mapping). Xbox One has a system features, the excellent co-pilot share controls mode and adaptive controller support for all games... read more about system accessibility settings.

Supported by PlayabilityInitiative and accessibility contributors: @JonahMonaghan and @ronald_brady


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Games Like Nier: Automata

The following games are like Nier: Automata. They address a similar topic or offer a similar way to play. They are good options to play next and also good alternatives to Nier: Automata for younger age ratings.

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