After what many would consider a rather sensational Nintendo Direct on the February 13th. I found myself getting home from work to greet my cat, warm up my curry in preparation to turn on my Switch and……download some demos?
“Yoshi’s Crafted World” and “Daemon X Machina” were freshly announced to have demos available, so in-between rounds on Tetris 99 (the game none of us knew we needed until now) I fired up each game and was pleasantly surprised and impressed.
“Yoshi’s Crafted World” is a cute and colourful platformer full of charm and polish featuring one of Nintendo’s most lovable characters and tasks you with progressing through beautifully designed levels. Opening new pathways, collecting coins, stars and flowers are the order of the day in the levels provided. Controls are simple enough, but this is Nintendo so expect later levels in the main game to make full use of Yoshi’s various abilities which involve his classic floaty jump, head stomping and the ability to throw eggs into the foreground and background of a level adding a nice depth to what otherwise could be mistaken for a simple 2D side scroller.
“Daemon X Machina” is a pulse-pounding, sci-fi mech action game produced by Kenichiro Tsukuda of Armoured Core fame. The story tasks you with defending the planet against an AI force that has risen to threaten humanity in the wake of a radiation leak caused by the moon crashing into the planet. Clearly, Link was too busy that day! The demo reeked of 80’s action with a stunning art style that put me in mind of the fantastic “Godzilla: Planet Of Monsters” with some ear-shredding guitar riff’s so you can swing your heavy metal hair while engaging in explosive combat.
I was aware of both games but neither were on my radar as immediate purchases, they may both have been overlooked all together depending on what else is on the shelves when they both launch. Having now spent a bit of time getting hands-on with them I can honestly say “Yoshi and Daemon, YOU JUST MADE THE LIST!” Daemon X Machina may even be a day one purchase for me all because a demo was provided.
Nintendo clearly has confidence in their games and wanted to give the fans a taste of what’s to come this year. A similar story could be said for Capcom who have been on fire lately, releasing demo’s for the pant browning “Resident Evil 2” remake and for everyone’s favourite pizza eating demon hunter with a fashion sense that would make Bon Jovi blush in the ever-slick and stylish “Devil May Cry” both games already had huge interest but the hype only grew after demo’s showing the love and quality that has gone in to these games was seen and felt first hand.
It is a shame then, for both the developers and gamers, that so many titles don’t get the attention or look in that they should as we rarely see demo content being released anymore. Although all good reviewers strive to give us a breakdown of what to expect and how a game plays, there really is no substitute for hands-on and with streaming somehow becoming so popular more and more people sit and watch others play, relying on what they are saying about a product instead of getting the opportunity to try for themselves.
Games cost a lot of money to make so it’s safe to say some developers and publishers want to rely on just talking up their product to build interest then release it in a hopefully playable state (that’s a topic for another day) with a view to getting the best return possible. I would argue however that not releasing demo’s, especially for single player content cut’s off a number of potential sales as gamers may decide that something they were only mildly interested in might just be something must have or discover something completely different to fall in love with.
So next time you find yourself not knowing what to play or if you are in the market for something new and different, don’t forget your friendly neighbourhood demo page on the store, who knows, you might just find your next favourite game!
Now, does Daemon X Machina have a collector’s edition for Pre-Order?……..