Firstly, let’s address the elephant in the room. Nexomon: Extinction heavily resembles another little critter catching game which, unless you have been living underneath a rock for the past 20 years, you’ve probably heard of.
Essentially, Nexomon: Extinction is a Pokémon clone, there is no denying that. But that is not necessarily a dirty word around here, as this is the closest single-player experience you will get to playing a Pokémon game on the PS4. However, does Nexomon: Extinction hold up on its own merit, or will it get you ditching the control pad for a rival fix?
The plot follows an on-going war between the terrifying Tyrant Nexomon for domination, which isn’t just putting the future of Nexomon’s survival at risk, but humankind as well. You start off in an orphanage, about to begin your trials to see if you can be a trainer at the guild. It’s not too long until you find yourself in big trouble.
Narratively, the premise is compelling throughout with many curve balls hidden within the storytelling. Even though our protagonist is a silent mute, the game is filled with lots of cheesy humour, thanks to the sidekick character Coco. The game often sneaks in the occasional breaking of the fourth wall gag, too, and it’s hard not to give in and let out a little giggle.
You start your adventure with a spring in your step. Why? Because the moment you are let loose in this world, you’re able to run. Any long-term Pokémon fan will tell you that the beginning is usually tedious due to the incredibly slow walking. This helped the pacing of the game from the beginning. Alongside this, you can pick your name and choose how to present yourself from a list of avatar options that you can conveniently change at any point during your travels. Therefore, if you have any regrets from your prior choices, you can easily rectify them. Only if real life was the same…
Another supposedly permanent choice in the game is choosing your starter. You can pick your sidekick from nine Nexomon, each one representing each elemental type in the game. Although I don’t want to upset the little guys, how special are they if you can statistically encounter some of them at the beginning of the game? Yes, the encounter rate for the starters is classified as ultra-rare, but within a couple of hours I caught three of them. Not really that special then, are they?
There are over 300 fantastically designed Nexomons to capture and level up, with a good chunk of them feeling original and not just blatant copies. This certainly helps you grow a bond with each Nexomon you capture, and in turn, leads to you feeling like a proud parent when they finally evolve. They grow up so fast…
To capture the critters you encounter, you’ll use Nexotraps. You wear down the Nexomon and throw a Nexotrap and then complete the QTE. However, certain factors will determine your capturing odds, such as status effect, tiredness, and hurling foods at them to fill their bellies. Nexomon, being the great connoisseurs that they are, will react differently depending on the type of foods you throw at them. Still, it can be difficult to capture them at times.
In all honestly, the game doesn’t stray away too much from the Pokémon plug-in formula. You’ve got healing centres for that sweet free health care, general stores to buy a variety of items, and shaking grass where you’ll encounter the Nexomon in the wild. That is not to say it doesn’t have a few distinctive features hidden up its sleeve. These include cores, that you equip to each individual Nexomon that will give them hidden perks such as extra experience or coins from battling. Another is collecting shards from breaking rocks with your mighty pickaxe that you can either sell or use to craft later down the line.
The environments are exciting to explore with inviting landscapes as backdrops. It’s hard not to adventure forward to different parts of the game just to see what lays behind the next corner. You can also embark on quests by either heading to the guild or talking to people around the area to gain goodies or occasionally obtain shiny vault keys that will help you during your journey.
Nexomon: Extinction can surprisingly be difficult at times. You’ll have to grind up your Nexomon often to make sure your whole squad is up to scratch. Even when you have the elemental advantage, your whole team can still take a reasonable beating in the ring from what feels like an overpowered move set. Personally, a lot of time was spent sinking into grinding against other tamers for that precious experience and coins. That certainly did pay off in the end as the extra levels and items came in clutch.
In conclusion, Nexomon: Extinction has an appealing storyline bursting with great humour throughout. The Nexomon themselves are terrifically designed, coming in many shapes and size, and with various fighting moves.
Even so, the capturing mechanics and general levelling grind seem very harsh, resulting in little reward for your efforts before you must repeat the cycle all over again. Having said that, these are only a few complaints as the game provides a worthy RPG experience.
Nexomon: Extinction PS4 Review
Overall -Very Good - 7.5/10
Nexomon: Extinction offers a sublime catching and raising monster experience, packed with some great humour throughout. If you don’t mind investing some serious time into the grinding process – this is definitely worth checking out.
- Fantastically designed Nexomon
- Great storyline
- Spot on cheesy humour
- Starters don’t feel very special
- Capturing and levelling up Nexomon can be time-consuming
Review Disclaimer: This review was carried out using a copy of the game provided by the publisher. For more information, please read our Review Policy.
Reviewed using PS4 Slim.