There aren’t a lot of cyberpunk games out there in the wild at the moment for fans of the genre to choose from. Deus Ex is the biggest one and we know CD Projekt Red is working on one as well. However if you want one now you may want to check out this new game from indie developer Dreadlocks. The game is called Dex which also happens to be the name of the female heroine that you will be playing as.
Dex is a 2D RPG/latformer where you play as a hacker who is about to be arrested but is able to avoid it with the help of some friends. The game takes place in the slums and is very reminiscent of the kind of setting you would expect in games such as Deus Ex and such. Anyway to give you a little more insight into why Dex is a wanted woman it’s because she can drop into what they call cyberspace at will while others have to use terminals to do it. The game has a main quest for you to tackle but there are also plenty of side missions that you’ll be undertaking as well.
Fair warning this is not a game children should be playing. There are a lot of things in this game intended for adults from the kinds of quests you’ll be doing to items you’ll come across in the world. I loved that a lot of the side missions in Dex were interesting and not just some fetch quest and other basic thing like other games throw at you. I found many of them fun and interesting and they can end in different ways depending on the choices that you make. The voice acting in the game however outside of Dex herself isn’t very good so that was a bit of a letdown. Dex though is voiced well and is an interesting character that if you’re like me will enjoy learning about as you play through the game.
So of course let’s talk about how Dex actually plays because that’s important for any RPG. The game has some beat’em up gameplay that it mixes with platforming. You’ll be able to attack a wide array of enemies with hand to hand combat or attack from a distance using firearms. The game is pretty deep in the gameplay mechanics and you’ll be mixing things up to perform combos, blocks, evasive rolls and more. For those who like to be stealthy you can do that too to avoid combat if you choose. You can upgrade Dex’s abilities in a skill tree and includes things that you would expect like lock picking and the ability to upgrade your combat abilities. Once you upgrade some of your various abilities you’ll be able to go back to past areas and do new things in them. I mentioned that Dex is a hacker so of course there are hacking mini games as well that will feel a little like Geometry Wars if you’ve played that. There are all kinds of things to hack in the game like enemy turrets and security cameras.
While I enjoyed most things about Dex the game does have some issues. The AI can be dumb sometimes and will just stand there while they are being attacked. There were also some times where I would just get stuck on things in the environment for no reason whatsoever. For those who want a fun combat system you may also be turned away as you pretty much just press the attack button over and over so if that sounds boring to you then you may want to avoid. For those who care about trophies the game has a full set including a platinum but as of this review there is an issue with one of the trophies making the platinum unobtainable. This will hopefully be fixed in an upcoming patch.
I really enjoyed my time with Dex for the most part as it scratched that cyberpunk itch that we just don’t see enough of in games. The game is meaty and is not short on content by any means. The quests in particular the side quests were very interesting unlike a lot of other games. I wish the voice acting of pretty much everyone in the game outside of Dex was better and that the combat was a little more fun. If you’re looking for an interesting cyberpunk world to explore and a game that will last you awhile give Dex a look.
Final Score: 8/10