Foregone

Foregone

released on Oct 12, 2020

Foregone

released on Oct 12, 2020

Foregone is a fast and fluid 2D action-platformer packed with legendary loot and stunning pixel art. Collect an arsenal of powerful weapons and unravel a compelling story of regret and conspiracy as you slice your way through hordes of enemies to save Calagan. Available on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, XboxOne and PC.


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I picked up Foregone since I saw it listed as a Metroidvania and people generally seemed to like it. It's really not much of a Meteroidvania, but I did generally like it. I've also seen it referred to as a Souls-like, but I don't really think that's true either. It does indeed have a dodge roll and you do have to pick up your xp when you die, but it's smooth, fast-paced, not that hard, and, most importantly, fun. So, I'd just call it an action platformer.

The combat is very simple. You have a melee weapon, a ranged weapon that gets ammo as you use melee, and two abilities that charge from using either ranged or melee. Everything flows together nicely, and the enemy design is complements the gameplay well. The boss fights were enjoyable, though not particularly challenging. I never died to a boss more than once, and two of the bosses I died to I beat with full or nearly full health on the second attempt.

The game stumbled a bit when it came to level design. While the backgrounds and art were quite good and atmospheric, the level layouts themselves started to feel very same-y in the back half of the 10 hour run time. I really can't put my finger on exactly what was missing, but they needed a bit more spice.

There was a Diablo-style loot system for some reason. The particular implementation meant that all types of weapons were available from the first stage. I think the game would have benefitted from having you unlock new weapons as you progress, and then allow you to customize those weapons, rather than grind for the right stats. Not a huge deal, but spacing out the types of weapons could have helped with the same-ness in the back half.

Storywise, it was standard video-game fare. The overall premise and world wasn't bad, but the game failed to deliver enough characterization to sufficiently pull me into the narrative.

So, I'd say it's worth playing for anyone looking for a good action platformer. It's nothing earth shattering, but the combat is certainly a notch above the average.

TL;DR - Foregone is a solid 2D action platformer with a unique art style and engaging combat.

One of my big “problems” with how I like to play games is my inability to focus on one game at a time. I like variety and playing different games prevents me from getting bored and abandoning the stories and gameplay mechanics that I otherwise enjoy. My eyes tend to get a little bigger than my gamer stomach can handle though and I usually end up biting off more than I can chew. As much as I dislike it, the current market seems to favor long playtimes, and each new release feels like it takes longer and longer to beat. Don’t misunderstand - I love sinking my teeth into a meaty 40 hour RPG, but as the figurative and literal landscapes of video games continue to grow, I increasingly find myself at a disadvantage because of my gaming habits. The desire to play new releases mixed in with the growing backlog becomes drowned out by the other six games I’m currently playing and that will likely take me 180 hours to finally get through. That’s why Foregone was such a refreshing experience for me. It’s a tight, linear adventure with a beginning, middle, and an end that took me about six hours to roll credits on; and the best part is that it’s a really good time.

In Foregone you’ll play as the first Arbiter, a biologically enhanced soldier originally designed to protect the city of Calagan. While I ended up liking the story and its themes, Foregone milks its short playtime for all its worth as it unravels its mysteries and answers your questions. In the opening couple hours I felt lost plot-wise and I had no idea why I was exploring Calagan and its depths and fighting through its hordes of enemies. Eventually everything becomes clear, and the game’s exploration of themes of regret, misplaced good intentions, and the consequences of scientific experimentation gone too far ended up meshing well together. There is a single story choice given to the character at the end of the game, which felt a touch out of place for me, but I was satisfied with the ending I picked.

One of the standout features of Foregone is its absolutely stunning pixel art. The backgrounds are a treat to behold and make exploration fun. There’s a mausoleum section level that stood out to me for its huge skeletons and stonework bathed in green light; it invoked so much atmosphere and set such a great mood. There’s a variety of different environments with their own personality and distinctness, from large and elaborate temples to winding and claustrophobic caves. The Arbiter and the myriad of enemy designs are all unique and recognizable and they animate beautifully, and I also like how the 3D pixelated models contrasted with the flat 2D space. This isn’t the only thing that Foregone does well though, and the detailed locations and high-quality animation all work together in service of its excellent combat.

In terms of its gameplay, Foregone places most of its emphasis on its combat mechanics. There’s a variety of different weapons to play with including a spear, shortsword, twin daggers, and my personal favorite: gunchucks. In addition to your melee weapon you’ll also have a secondary ranged weapon that recharges ammo as you hit enemies with melee attacks. With every weapon you’ll simply mash the attack button until the combo is complete, with the last hit usually packing extra punch. The challenge and depth of the combat comes from learning enemy attacks and when to dodge to avoid them. You can interrupt your combo at virtually any point to initiate a dodge without losing the combo. This led to some really awesome sequences where I’d be fighting five or six enemies on screen and dodging and jumping and air dashing around while intermingling shotgun shots to stun one enemy while I used the final blow of my combo to eliminate another in one hit all before returning to the first guy I was dealing with. This kind of timing becomes even more paramount in the boss fights, with each having unique movesets and phases and requiring you to utilize new skills you pick up along the way. I think the game falls on the easier side, I only died two or three times outside of the boss fights, but the bosses provide a solid challenge that required multiple attempts to complete, which I was happy to do because of how much fun I was having with the combat.

There are some things I would have liked to see and some design decisions I don’t think really work. Foregone uses a Dark Souls inspired mechanic where you lose all your currency when you die. When you respawn at the checkpoint you can choose to regain half of the currency you had accumulated or try and return to the spot you were killed and pick up the entire amount. The game is so easy that this was never really a difficult decision to make, and for this style of 2D action game I’m not sure it adds to the experience. I also think the gear system is completely unnecessary, as you progress through the game you’ll pick up weapons and armor with a gear score and a designated rarity color. Most of the gear you pick up will be salvaged for coins which can be used to upgrade the gear with the highest base number, and you’ll rinse and repeat several times. The problem is I never noticed a difference in any of the weapons I picked up. The buffs felt meaningless and unimpactful and the game may have been better off with a simpler loot system. The platforming doesn’t present much of a challenge, and mistakes you do make have minimal consequences associated with them. I think it would have been very exciting to have some intense and challenging platforming sections to break up the combat and provide a different kind of thrill. With all of the good elements in Foregone, it’s a little disappointing that the game is held back by a few tacked on mechanics that don’t enhance the experience.

Despite these flaws though, Foregone is a great experience and definitely worth your time. The campaign is short enough to warrant multiple playthroughs, and the game does offer a New Game + option to encourage you to go again. There are also some timed missions where you’re tasked with killing all the enemies before the clock runs out that are nice to have included. The enjoyable combat, gorgeous art style, and drip-feed plot all work together to provide a short but complete experience. At $20 it’s a competitive price, but is frequently on sale for much less and absolutely worth it. If you find yourself, like me, drowning underneath the weight of multiple giant games, then I recommend you check out Foregone as a refreshing palette cleanser.

Throwing my hat into the "the perfect Steam Deck game" ring

Un jeu d'action-aventure en 2D qui est correct mais ne propose rien de nouveau. Pas d'idées de gameplay originale, une direction artistique générique et un level design banal au mieux.

Excellent slide scrolling action. Fun bosses and so many different powers and weapons

O único GRANDE destaque desse jogo são seus chefes, que realmente são divertidos de se enfrentar, tirando isso é um jogo daorinha