Ruinverse (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Nayu 25.08.2021

Review for Ruinverse on Nintendo Switch

Set in a world where, long ago, people who can teleport are called transporters because they warp people and cargo to various places, Ruinverse is the newest RPG from EXE-CREATE and KEMCO. Kit has problems with his transporting skills - the ability to warp from one place to another which is an official occupation, so while he rests, he helps his long-time friend, treasure hunter, and mentor Allie, to hunt down a monster. During the hunt Allie touches a monument; an object left by ancient beings called seraphs from long ago to protect the various living species, including humans, dwarves, and elves from monsters. Only knowledgeable folk called folklorists can read and understand what is written on monuments, without that translation touching the antiquated stone harbours the risk of injury, or in Allie's case puts another soul inside her body. The three set on a journey to find out how to separate Alvyn from Allie before their souls merge permanently, which sparks events linked with earlier times when seraphs roamed the earth.

KEMCO has drawn on its vast range of experience with RPGs to create what would be a masterpiece if it had included the weapon upgrade system of previous games, where combining weapons of the same type for each character increases the stats and power of the new weapon. Instead, a simpler system of simply buying or finding new equipment in treasure chests is used. This makes it easier for newcomers who aren't necessarily accustomed to some of the common game elements, although it can be a disappointment for returning fans who happen to enjoy that weapon upgrade system. There are a few DLC available, but they are not necessary to complete or enjoy this; they are there for people who want to make the experience easier to play.

The story itself is full of twists and surprises. The reasons behind why and how Allie met Alvyn's soul is saved until later, which changes the perception of Ruinverse's world history. At first Allie doesn't remember anything when Kit touches her, changing her to Alvyn's soul. The lack of memory thankfully doesn't last for too long - although that change in itself is bad news, as it shows how little time the trio have to find answers. Thankfully, their monster-hunting travels lead them to the rest of their party members, who are all unique individuals.

Screenshot for Ruinverse on Nintendo Switch

Lexor is an elfin doctor who tries to distance himself from people because his life expectancy is far longer than theirs, and he wishes to avoid heartache when any friends of his die. The companionable relationship between the party members forces Lexor to change his perspective. He is highly trained in medicine, and also a complete weirdo that is at odds with his scholarly manner. He is obsessed with humans, treats Kit as a study object, investigating him as payment for a favour that takes the entire game to be paid off. Poor Kit has to deal with Lexor acting almost like a vampire in the way he obsesses over Kit's physique in the name of science. There is nothing inappropriate about that, it is just very strange.

Allie has the obvious problem of sharing a soul and potentially disappearing into Alvyn's soul, but she is highly skilled as a hunter. She teaches Kit the basics of hunting, which serves as the tutorial for learning how to find hidden passages in walls - a fun popular feature of KEMCO RPGs - how to use magic and skills that can cause physical damage, and support skills to boost stats and cure status changes in battle. Allie is a forthright personality, easily agitated which provides many amusing moments, and a stark contrast to the reserved Alvyn. During the game Allie and Alvyn can change places in battle, helping improve physical attack and defence (Allie), or magical attack and defense stats (Alvyn). If set on the easiest difficulty this changing isn't actually needed, but it may prove vitally important on harder settings. The same is true for whether magic or physical skills are focused on for levelling up: it's down to player preference. Battles use familiar turn-based systems, and can be set to occur more frequently once through a certain point of each area. This helps when levelling up is required to get stronger for the bosses ahead.

Screenshot for Ruinverse on Nintendo Switch

Allie, Alyvn, Kit, and Lexor are not the only party members. The funniest duo has to be the trickster wolf Toto and member of the castle guards dwarf Nana. Nana is tiny for a dwarf, looks super cute with her white twin ponytail hairstyle, and has a bubbly personality. She, like Lexor, has an obsession: hers is more normal - she adores Toto's fur. She will do anything to be able to hug him and feel his soft fur. Like Lexor's fascination with Kit, Nana's passion for Toto's fur is not perceived as anything inappropriate in a romantic way. It's the same as liking cute and soft plushies in real life: she goes crazy for it, and does all she can to protect Toto, and keep what she deems her prize possession safe. Toto hates the hugs, but learns to care for Nana, especially when she gets distressed at one part in the story. That constant humour is a joy to witness, and helps cushion how life-threatening some of the situations the gets in.

Thankfully there is no need to choose who fights in battle, and who has to remain side-lined. All characters are present in battle, with the formation being left to the player, so some can have higher defence in the back rows, and others can have higher attack power in the front row. On the easiest difficulty it mostly did not matter where characters were placed, apart from final boss battles, where even on high levels with strong armour and weapons, getting killed could easily happen if there were any slips in making the best move. This allows for everyone to play with their favourite characters, and not choose between them.

Screenshot for Ruinverse on Nintendo Switch

Alongside being a transporter, Kit has a passion for growing things. This is beneficial because Kit can plant seeds at any time in three pots that grow using real time, often in increments of thirty to ninety minutes. The seeds correspond to different stats, and an item relating to that stat will be appear at the end of the growing cycle. The other element of growth accessible from the main menu is the Avalonia Tree, which needs vast amounts of money to grow, but this is worthwhile because it gives skill points that enable the characters to learn and strengthen both magic and physical skills. It is rewarding earning enough to improve the tree, so abilities can be improved quickly.

Other game elements familiar to long-time KEMCO fans include being able to re-read previous quests and story points at any time. There is a lottery game that can be placed three times in one real time day, winning items of various importance that make a difference to gameplay. There is also a bingo mini-game that involves completing certain quests to clear the board, and gain more rare prizes. Additionally, there is an in-game store where the hard to come by Angel Tears can be used to gain rare items, equipment, and weapon skins. These are beneficial, but aren't absolutely mandatory to complete the basic story.

Screenshot for Ruinverse on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

9/10
Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

Rated 9 out of 10

The amount of customisation that players can use to create the best team that suits their playstyle combined with a captivating story, highly detailed environments, and lovable characters make Ruinverse undoubtedly one of KEMCO's finest RPGs. The main story will take around twenty hours to complete, with dozens more hours needed to complete all the side quests, which are optional, but reveal more about the characters, and provide more valuable items. The multiple endings make completing such side-quests more important if the best ending is to be achieved, although what constitutes such an ending will be down to player perspective. Skilfully written, with an even balance of humour and gravitas, Ruinverse belongs in every RPG fan's collection.

Developer

Exe-Create

Publisher

Kemco

Genre

Turn Based RPG

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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