It’s always cool to watch as an idea that starts small is able to grow an become a grander thing than what was originally conceived. Indivisible is a game that has been anticipated for quite a while now, especially for the folks that helped by contributing money to Lab Zero Games via their Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign. At that point in time, there was a demo that players could sink their teeth into, but like any little snippet given away, it wasn’t enough to satiate the proverbial hunger that people were feeling for Indivisible.
After the rather successful Indiegogo campaign, 505 Games was ready to step in and help make this game a full-blown reality.
Indivisible starts off with four mysterious individuals fighting a big evil monster named Kala and just as you start to understand what is going on, the game transitions to the future in which the focus is put on a young woman named Ajna, who is the main character in the game. She has grown up in her peaceful village and it seems like everyone knows everyone. The villagers are going about their daily routines of catching fish and being happy in their little paradise. However, Ajna leaves the village to meet up with her Father to train, as he is a martial arts master.
Being a temperamental young teenager, Ajna can be impatient as well as overbearing and her Dad decides it is time to talk to her about who her mother was and why life has been hard, but back in their home. The story from here on out is exactly as you expect from most generic RPGs. In that regard, it made all the “twists” that happen in the game not shocking in the slightest.
The thing about Indivisible is, while the main story may be as generic as white bread, the real charm comes from Ajnas relationships and interactions with others. The humor is on point and many moments where you think Ajna will “zig”, she is a careless teen and will thus “zag”. Whenever she encounters other people, oddly enough she has the ability to pull them from the world they are in and put them in a new dimension within her head. This ability leads to hysterical banter! In this dimension, Ajna can talk to all the people she meets on her travels as well as spend the currency that she finds scattered in the game to boost her stats.
There are multiple qualities about Indivisible that will be appetizing to both casual gamers as well as hardcore. In an odd but satisfying way, Lab Zero Games were able to construct a game in which there is a nice smorgasbord of different styles of games.
Fans of Metroid and Castlevania games will feel right at home with the 2D exploration. Early into Indivisible you will notice there are multiple areas that you can’t quite reach (but you will keep trying anyway!) Like Samus and all of the other heroes from those types of games, you will acquire abilities while playing that will allow you to reach those hard to reach places such as a teleporting as well as the ability to do an air-dash. With the game’s exploration all in 2D, get used to platforming as you will be doing it quite a bit.
Early on, you acquire an axe that is used in combat as well as for travel. If you jump towards a flat wall, there is a high probability that you can use the axe to stick to the wall, and afterwards, give yourself an extra jump up the wall.
It feels odd to talk about combat mechanics because I feel so torn because of how I feel about it. When you are in combat, you are allowed to have a total of 4 people fight. It’s important to get to know what each of your character’s strengths and weaknesses are, as you can die quickly if you don’t set up your team strategically. Learning HOW to fight is very simple, but mastering it can be a little bit tricky as you will need to know when to precisely defend yourself.
Oddly enough, I think it is fair to say that learning how to defend is the number one MOST IMPORTANT skill for you to learn in Indivisible. If you can perform a perfect block, instead of taking damage, you gain health which is something I’ve never seen in a game before. Each one of your 4 characters is represented by one of the four buttons on your controller. Fights are not turn-based, it’s all real-time! Once you have a team you really like to play with (there’s a cast of 20 playable teammates!) you can learn how you want to shuffle the combat. By simply pressing their corresponding button, they will attack. Everyone has different types of attacks that you can utilize for maximum efficiency.
The combat is great, especially if you are a fan of Valkyrie Profile, but it is certainly not perfect either. I honestly felt like battles took entirely way too long. That may come down to the fact that when I play RPG’s, I am something of an over-achiever and I will spend extra time in an area trying to power-level. I never really felt like I was awarded that kind of luxury. As long as you get the defending timing down, you can really blow through fights without thinking much about it, but at a painstakingly slow speed.
So, of course, this means that you will always be at the level that the game wants you to be at, never over-levelled, but then again not necessarily under-levelled.
Indivisible was a game that I would say that, at the end of the day, I enjoyed. There’s a mountain of charm residing in the young teenage body of Ajna and any time she opened her mouth to speak, I found myself laughing out loud. I really enjoyed the battle system as well as the beautifully animated world. Sadly, the issues I had with the game were still pretty big. The combat is fun but it will get dull quick with how ridiculously long fights are. The story is not exactly the most riveting either, but as the old saying goes “It’s not about the final destination but rather the friends you made along the way”.