Hand-drawn 2D action game Afterimage from Modus Games and Aurogon Shangai is ready for you on PS5. Learn more in our Afterimage review!
Hand-drawn 2D action game Afterimage from Modus Games and Aurogon Shangai is ready for you on PS5. The game takes place years after the cataclysm known as The Razing, which nearly wiped out humanity. You’ll be placed in the shoes of Renee, an amnesiac girl who wakes up among the ruins of the city’s capital. In order for her to recover lost memories, you will need to embark on a quest to save her mentor as you try to uncover the truth about what is really going on and what led to Renee’s current status.
Afterimage will allow you to explore the world of Engardin, presented through a non-linear adventure that will give you the chance to select how you approach things and in what order. Renee’s actions will help to shape the world of Engardin, which will eventually lead her toward one of the different endings that the game has to offer, thus increasing its replay value. As you can tell from the trailer and screens in this Afterimage review, this is a gorgeous experience that certainly manages to stand out on PlayStation 5.
You’ll control Renee with the left analog stick or the D-Pad, jumping – and eventually double jumping – with the X button. If you press and hold down the button, Renee will be able to jump higher. For some platforming segments, you’ll need to press and hold down the D button for a high jump, and then release the X button and press the Square button to hover for a moment while attacking. The L2 button can be used to dash backward or forward, depending on what is needed to avoid an incoming attack. And yes, you can also dash while jumping!
Your weapons will be mapped to the Square and Triangle buttons. A subweapon will also be set to the Circle button. If you have an item, you can heal some of your wounds by pressing the L1 button aa for special moves, they’re set to the L2 and R2 buttons. The camera can be swung up or down a bit by using the right analog stick so that you’re not caught off guard. The D-Pad will act as quickslots to which you can bind consumable items for easier and faster use so that they’re always ready for when you need them.
As you defeat enemies, you will gain experience points. Once you’ve obtained enough experience points, Renee will level up. You will also receive Talent Points as you level up. Talent Points can be spent at the Talent tab on the menu – which you can open by pressing the Touchpad on the DualSense. As you unlock nodes on the skill tree, you’ll be able to boost your main weapon attacks, increase subweapon damage, increase Renee’s max HP and max MP, boost her defense, lower contact damage received, increase healing efficiency, increase HP recovery, make it possible to recover some MP for every enemy that you defeat, and more. Some nodes will be locked out until Renee reaches a specific level, which is the game’s way of balancing things out.
While exploring each area, you should keep an eye out for Shards. They are split into Shards of Divine Leaf and Shards of Divine Flower. By collecting enough of one or the other, you’ll be able to increase Renee’s max HP and MP, thus allowing her to withstand more damage and have more MP for activating skills. You should also search everywhere for the many treasure chests that are either out in the open or hidden behind a fake wall since they will provide you with consumable items and equipment that can make a big difference.
As you complete each section, you’ll get to find some very special Divine Seeds. These are important because they can be used to activate the Afterimage that you obtain along the way. These are split into the main Afterimage that is added to the circle at the top of the Afterimage tab – such as the ones for dashing, sliding, and double jumping – as well as the ones that are added at the bottom of the screen. They include Scavenger, which auto-collects dews in a larger range;
You’ll eventually reach Resting Town, which will end up serving as a hub of sorts and your base of operations. There won’t be much to do at first since you’ll only run into a few NPCs, but that’s why you need to complete as many quests as possible! Completing quests will allow you to bring more and more NPC to Resting Town, which will allow you to purchase items or take on even more quests. One of the NPCs you will find in town right away is Alice, who is going to need your help!
Alice will give you the Delicacy quest to complete. She needs you to find some ingredients for her to make a delicious mushroom dish. Because of this, you’ll have to find some mushroom spores as well as a medium rare mushroom. Once you find those ingredients at the Field of Geo area and bring them back, she’ll reward you by opening up her Conjuring services – a.k.a, cooking! There are many recipes for Alice to complete. By working on these and eating the resulting dish, you’ll gain a permanent boost to your stats as well as a temporary one. You might get more HP, a boost to how many experience points you gain by defeating enemies, an increase in damage dealt with your main weapon, and more.
When you reach a save point – known as a Confluence – you’ll be able to interact with it by pressing up on the left analog stick. What this will do is not only save your progress up to that point but also completely heal your wounds and have you recover all of your MP up to its current max. Items will also be replenished to their maximum capacity. Unfortunately, doing this will also make all enemies respawn, so you better be ready to take them down again! At least you’ll be able to get some extra experience in the process, as well as some item drops depending on how lucky you are.
Afterimage has a full trophy list with a Platinum trophy for you to aim for. And since this one is a Cross-Buy title, if you have a PlayStation 5 console, you can download the PS4 and PS5 versions of the game, with each one having a separate trophy list. The list includes 28 Bronze trophies, 15 Silver trophies, and 2 Gold trophies to work on. There are a bunch of trophies for defeating the bosses in the game. There are plenty of collectibles and equipment to find, so there are trophies for buying all shop items, learning all skills, collecting all weapons and armor, finding all glyphs, collecting all Shards, and tasting all food. There are also some trophies for completing miscellaneous objectives, but you’ll have to play the game to find out more about those since I don’t want to spoil things.
Afterimage is a gorgeous Metroidvania on PlayStation 5. As Renee ventures through Engardin, she’ll have to go up against dozens upon dozens of enemies and bosses as you make the most of the weapons, items, equipment, and abilities you gain access to. It’s a challenging and long journey that will end up taking you well over 20 hours to see until your quest is over as you reach one of the different endings that the game has to offer. Afterimage is available as a Cross-Buy title, so your $24.99 purchase will give you access to both the PlayStation 4 and the PlayStation 5 versions of the game at no extra cost.
This Afterimage review is based on a PlayStation 5 copy provided by Modus Games.