After… not that many days, actually, I have finished Sentinels of Freedom (unless they plan on releasing another chapter). As such, I have decided to write a review here because I have yet to properly set up my YouTube channel. Please note that I am in no way a professional reviewer and everything I say is heavily biased towards my opinions. Also note that I was playing the Switch version. So, to get started:
The games, er, gameplay is solid as far as I can tell. I’ve only played three turn-based strategy games in my life, Fire Emblem: Three Houses, Fire Emblem Heroes, and Civ VI (and I don’t think that second one even technically counts), so I’m not the best person to judge these kinds of things. At the beginning the random initiative as opposed to the consistent “all player troops go, all enemy troops go, rinse and repeat” of Fire Emblfm games was annoying, especially when there’s a lot of enemies on the map (I’m definitely giving Guns n’ Stuff a bad review on Yelp!) but I got used to it eventually. Having lots of enemies also occasionally causes lag but that’s to be expected, if I’m being honest.
The difficulty of the game is frustrating. I started off on normal mode like I usually do but that proved way too hard for me so I switched to easy mode pretty quickly. I’m not sure whether the difficulty was “real” or “fake” but it was extremely hard for a normal mode. Or I just wasn’t adjusting my hero’s abilities properly. That could also be it.
Speaking of, the hero adjustments were comprehensive enough (once I could read the text which was small even at the largest setting) but seeing as his I’m the kind of guy who just goes for whatever attack seems strongest I couldn’t tell you anything about properly specing your heroes. Just know that Wraith doesn’t have all that great abilities but Expatriette with explosions is awesome so long as you don’t hit your teammates. Guise would be pretty cool too if you didn’t get him so late in the game.
I also can’t tell you much about the game’s “weapon triangle” because it was complex enough without the small text and in the end I just went with whether there was a blue shield (resistant) or an orange explosion (weak) over an enemy’s head when I selected attacks.
Story (spoilers ahead)
The story is pretty great. The Original Player Character wasn’t as intrusive as I expected aside from being required for most missions in the first chapter. The story, thankfully, didn’t take long to cut to the chase of who the main villains were. Perestroika in the first chapter was expected because I was spoiled but Highbrow in the second was a bit out of left field.
There was quite a bit of funny dialogue which is always a bonus for me. Particularly, the player character has a lot of humorous dialogue options in which you can choose either to be a straight laced hero, a jokey meta guy, or what can only be described as a parody of dark and brooding anti-heroes. There’s a particularly funny moment late in the second chapter involving a robot but I won’t spoil that (spoiling jokes is worse than spoiling plot points and I stand by that opinion).
The other heroes also have funny lines such as not just Setback, but all of the Sentinels of Freedom considering the lack of Taqueria in walking distance to be a legitimate problem.
There is one thing that didn’t annoy me but will probably annoy other people, particularly those who aren’t interested in the SC:RPG, in that the game leaves a lot of dangling plot threads that either have been (such as the later return of Perestroika) or will be (such as there being a new F.I.L.T.E.R) picked up in the RPG (again, unless there’s a third chapter). They also make references to things that don’t make sense if you don’t know anything about the RPG or the card game.
They also introduce several new characters in the game such as Obsidian, a polite and articulate magmarian, and Mend, a villain supremely done with this superhero bull crap.
Speaking of dialogue, this game features voice acting. Specifically, it features lines for when heroes and villains are active, injured, or responding to things other characters are doing. I think most of the VAs are pretty good but some of them sound a bit off. Unity’s VA, for example, seems to be going for a really heavy Israeli accent which is understandable but I think she goes a bit overboard and I think Setback would sound pretty good if they had cleaned up his audio before implementing it.
On the other hand, Absolute Zero’s actor absolutely nailed it and Tachyon’s actor sounds pretty good, managing to pull off Tachyon’s habit of talking fast.
This is unrelated but it feels like Guise has the most lines of all the characters which I half suspect is because they wanted to use Joe Zieja as much as possible (it’s what I would do).
Sentinels of Freedom is overall a good game with a few flaws. I like it, at least and suggest people play it but, again, I’m in no way a professional reviewer so take my words with a grain of salt. So, yeah.