Gemini: Heroes Reborn Review
Gemini: Heroes Reborn, a first-person action-adventure that brings you deeper into The Heroes Universe, brought to you by Phosphor Games. Gemini: Heroes Reborn serves as a prequel to the Heroes Reborn TV series and runs parallel with Heroes Reborn: Enigma, an iPhone and Android game.
Tim Kring, the creator of The Heroes Universe and co-founder of Imperative Entertainment, shed some light as what to expect from the story and game design:
“Gemini: Heroes Reborn is actually an original story that shows a darker part of the Heroes Reborn universe unseen on the television series. We designed it to be a true gamer’s game that requires players to read and react to hostile situations quickly and effectively. The ability to combine or ‘stack’ multiple super powers provides a game-play experience unlike any game yet and we are eager to see some of the creative solutions players come up with to get through the game.”
So we’re to expect a darker story (check), Heroes (check), a true gamer’s game (check), stack super powers (check). It sounds pretty promising but let’s see if it’s as good as it sounds.
Gemini: Heroes Reborn is a first person action adventure combat game.
Combine superpowers like telekinesis and time travel and become the Hero, Cassandra. Use your skill and wits to battle her way through the enemy-filled secret facility, The Quarry, to save your abducted friend and solve a deep family mystery.
Gemini: Heroes Reborn is set in the year 2014. You play as Cassandra, a young college student who has no recollection of her past or family following an accident around the age of 12. Your good friend and Renautas Corp. employee, Alex, came across your parents names on an HR manifest pertaining to the acquisition of a Department of Agriculture Office. So together, you and Alex venture to the burnt down ruins of the facility to see if there’s any clues that could lead you to discover the identities of your parents.
During the first level you’ll receive some Smart Glasses from Alex which act as the in-game HUD. The Smart Glasses are very versatile and are able to monitor your vitals such as health and stamina for your abilities. They can track enemies on screen even if they walk out of sight to assist you in evaluating if it’s better to engage or avoid a confrontation. Way-points are easily visible to guide you to your objectives and there’s an onscreen date so you’re able to keep tabs on what year you’re currently in. The Smart Glasses are capable of voice to text recognition which acts as a quirky alternative to box standard subtitles. Alex’s basic rundown of the Smart Glasses features is interrupted as you discover that the facility has guards patrolling the site.
Once you stop to catch your breath after managing to sneak around the guards to a safe area, Alex encourages you to continue the search for clues rather than head back. You’ll use a combination of climbing and wall climbing to get to the roof tops in an attempt to avoid being spotted by the patrolling guards. After a few jumps and long jumps across the rooftops, you become separated after a roof you stand on collapses. This is where the story really begins as Alex is taken by the guards and your latent ability to Time Shift to the year 2008 comes into effect…
The campaign consists of 16 levels with the first 4 – while continuing the story – act as a tutorial into the basics of Time Shift, Telekinesis and Slow Time. There are also 36 collectibles to keep a look out for too as you progress through the game.
You must use Time Shift to navigate between the ruins of 2014 and the fully functional facility as it was in 2008. If in 2014 an area is inaccessible due to structural damage or debris, you can Time Slip to 2008 when the facility was structurally sound and continue on. The only restriction is if the geography is inaccessible in a different time period for instance; if you were in 2008 when the facility was in pristine condition you wouldn’t be able to Time Slip to 2014 if that area was completely devastated. Telekinesis allows you to manipulate and throw objects; white highlighted objects are fully effected by your Telekinesis and when you pickup and hold an object with your Telekinesis, the highlighted color changes to blue. Yellow highlighted objects are too heavy to be lifted but can be knocked out of the way by throwing other, lighter objects at them. Slow Time allows you to get the upper hand in almost any situation and can be used simultaneously with your other abilities.
While you’ll use these abilities to solve environmental puzzles the real delight is in using them in combat. Lets make up a theoretical combat scenario;
You come across three enemies in 2008 who have noticed you and are moving in for the kill – quickly Time Shift to 2014 and pick up a crate using Telekinesis and shift back to 2008, WHAM! CRATE TO THE FACE! You’ve just flattened one of the enemies BUT you’re about to take some buckshot from MR. POINTBLANK RANGE – Slow Time and use Telekinesis to catch and throw that shot right back at him. It seems like our friend, CRATE FACE, is regaining his faculties as the LONE RANGER makes his way towards you for a piece of the action. So, you take hold of CRATE FACE using Telekinesis and Time Shift him to 2014 where you proceed to batter him to death with an object of your choosing. Time Slip back to 2008 to finish off the LONE RANGER by slapping him around a little and then finish him off by sticking him into one of the environmental Deathtraps like an open electrical box – KKKKRRRRRAAAAAKKKKKLLLL, KAZAK! Dead and done – three feathers added to your cap.
If you haven’t already guessed, I found the combat to be really, really satisfying. Your abilities also become more powerful as you progress through the game.
The graphics are really quite nice, much better than I expected them to be – The voice acting was top notch and was executed perfectly whether it was delivered in a cut-scene or via communication through the Smart Glasses.
The Renautas Corporation’s motto is “Doing good is good business” and it seems that Phosphor Games took that on-board and did an excellent job with Gemini: Heroes Reborn. I would definitely recommend this to anyone regardless if they are a fan of The Heroes Universe or not. It’s a short but thrilling game that deserves to be played on its own merit. The story progression is well paced, the voice acting is great and the combat is superb. What more could you possible want from a video game?
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