I missed Nier Automata when it released and after seeing a generous amount of praise for that game and Replicant I thought I'd pick up this remake before playing the -as I understand it- very loose sequel Automata.
I dont want to get into any spoilers for the game as its a very story heavy (apparently?) but I'm about to pick up the second companion from what I can tell.
Overall I guess I'm kind of lukewarm on this game - after learning about this originally being a Last Gen console game and reading up on those impressions I feel maybe I'm in the 2010 impressions camp.
It seemed like everything I read about the game described it as being very story heavy which is what initially sold me on it (I prefer my games as interactive stories) but I'm around 10 hours in and I'd reckon I've spent about half of those hours back tracking across the same five or six maps the game has presented to me so far.
Now the individual set pieces of the game that stand out are very unique and excellent - I've enjoyed a lot of the puzzles and boss fights as well as the strange out of genre leaps it takes like the Resident Evil Mansion or the bizarre text adventure of the Forest of Dreams.
I find the characters to be quite charming and the story to be interesting and compelling when its presented but those moments are so brief I ponder the design decisions to pad out the intensity of the gameplay with mindless running back and forth between fetch quest NPCs.
I've avoided most side quests but have dabbled in a few to find the pay off lacking. The only real reward being more charming dialog between Nier and Grimoire Wiess. Again 10-15 seconds of content for 10-15 minutes of questing.
What are everyone else's thoughts? Does the game pick up?
For a larger discussion - if a game does turn the corner in the later acts does it excuse a middling opening?
So far this game seems to be made of excellent individual components that somehow feel lesser then the sum of its parts.
Maybe these days its just because my time is so limited that I'm less enthused about spending it on filler.