Going through high school is rough, but doing it while balancing a career as a superhero certainly doesn’t make it easier. So while we’ve seen it from Mark Grayson’s perspective in the critically acclaimed comic and animated series, Invincible. Now we get a different look in Terrible Posture Games’ Invincible Presents: Atom Eve, where we take control and make decisions for Samatha Eve Wilkins aka. Atom Eve, a crucial character in the Invincible Universe..
The preview featured 2 chapters from the game which is set for a November 14th release. Episode 2, “Back to School” and Episode 3, “Pajama Boy”. We’re given a glimpse of the Wilkins household and your dialogue selection can either make Samantha extremely aloof or doing her best to appease the people who keep a roof over her head. During this preview we will split time between her responsibilities with the Teen Team as well as her school work, which even included a Chemistry pop quiz which I failed in spectacular fashion.
This is done with a very visual novel aesthetic, you are presented with a city map where you can choose your next destination with other paths closed with the unchosen destinations (You can even opt to not engage in a relationship with fellow Teen Team member Rex Splode). Thankfully there is a log which keeps track of your choices, meaning if you want to do another run-through, you can refer to that in order to discern options not chosen. Besides conversational events, some decisions will result in fighting enemies in RPG style combat and others can unlock additional exp or abilities.
In combat you only control Atom Eve, although if she has companions they will act independently, usually attacking enemies. I found the combat to lean a little too much on the defensive side. As I had to constantly put up a shield to mitigate enemy numbers while whittling down the opposing numbers. Going head to head will probably result in a quick loss as her skill tree doesn’t seem to offer any healing abilities and the energy cap is an omnipresent concern. What’s interesting about the skill tree is that it’s not exclusively combat related, and supposedly some selections can affect conversation choices (although I didn’t exactly spend precious points on those…but who knows what possibilities that selection could bring).
Visually the combat feels like going through a motion comic. With the action resembling motion tweening as seen in old Adobe Flash videos. I will give the game credit though, in that damage is reflected with bloody and tattered clothing, but it’s really hard to justify your run of the mill thugs doing that much damage to a superhero with their melee attacks.
I think the only lingering concern for me is really the art direction of the title. It’s closer to the Amazon animated series than the comics, but there’s just something off about Eve’s character model…there’s just a little too much forehead for my liking, but if I resist focusing on that, it won’t affect my experience too much.
While it is presented as episodic, Terrible Posture Games hasn’t confirmed how the final product will be presented. Given that it took around 40 minutes to complete the 2 chapters in this sampler, I doubt this will be like your traditional episodic title. We’ll find out when the title releases on November 14th exclusively on PC via Steam. Now if you’ll excuse me I need to study up on chemistry…