The Fate series was born mainly as a purely Japanese visual novel, conceived by Kinoko Nasu with illustrations by Takeuchi Takashi, produced by Type-Moon during the 2004.
The series had a succession of chapters that told other stories within this universe, although among the many the most acclaimed remains Stay Night for its narrative arc. Unlimited Blade Works, of which Ufotable has produced a respectable animated adaptation.
In January 2017 it was released Fate / Extella: The Umbral Star, a chapter that relied heavily on the musou genre, proposing an original story of all respect. The title of Marvelous e Xseed it met with some success, despite some technical uncertainty, it managed to satisfy us for its entire duration.
Two years later, we find ourselves here talking about the sequel to Fate / Extella that is Fate / Extella Link, we got to play it for two weeks straight. Will he have managed to live up to the first chapter?
The history and its articulations
We assume that in order to play a FATE title like this, a mandatory requirement is to know the terminology and the events that took place within the series. If you are not familiar with the brand, a glossary comes to the rescue that tries to fill the gaps of gamers, trying to lend a hand, even if for obvious reasons it fails completely in its intent.
The events narrated take hold immediately after those of The Umbral Star, where the protagonist lives in peace within the virtual world known as SE.RA.PH. At our side we will have some well-known figures to those who played the previous chapter, let's talk about Nero, Tamamo no Mae and the enchanting Alter Larva: the latter in her child form.
Little Saber Altera is suddenly kidnapped, putting our group on alert. During an assault, our Master will find himself in trouble, resorting to an emergency summoning in which a new Servant called Charlemagne.
Having escaped the fight, our new Servant will use his Noble Phantom to allow us to study a plan within his fortress. The main problem is that the narrative is all about a series of achievements, where several sectors are under attack by an unknown force, which most of the time is shown in the movies as a shadow.
Aspects not exactly clear
From big fans of FATE, we weren't very happy with the story, plus it's hard to follow for anyone who hasn't followed all the events in the series. We too have had difficulties in certain phases, unfortunately the narrative is many times too confused and lays the narrative foundations too violently.
Speaking of the gameplay, we again find ourselves a pure Musou structure, where our task will be to destroy a myriad of enemies and conquer the various game areas. To give a pinch of challenge we think the biggest enemies, in this case made much more resistant than seen in the generals of Dynasty Warriors 9, which with a few hits ended up on the ground without too many problems.
During our phase of "cleaning enemies", we will be assigned secondary tasks that if completed will affect the obtaining of certain items and experience points.
Fighting with a certain Servant will allow us to level it, thus obtaining greater strength. Inside the game there is an enhancement panel, where it is possible to learn some skills or activate through a sort of scheme, skill circuits that will give us advantages in certain situations.
In the battles we will have available three types of powers, first of all the skills that will allow us to do some damage that is moderate compared to normal ones. Another special gift of the Servant is to release an immense strength after filling the Link bar, which will allow us not only to unleash many lethal blows but also to perform devastating combos complete with a final technique.
The last skill is that of the noble ghost, which can be activated once the appropriate bar is filled, even if it will fill up slowly, even if the final result is devastating and all accompanied by a respectable movie that has nothing to envy to animated transpositions.
The importance of being a Master
At the end of the missions, we will have the opportunity to explore the base camp. Inside our happly the principle we will be able to move freely in the third person with our Master. Among the various functions there is communication with the Servants, a very important task to establish a relationship of trust with the latter and thus have a greater performance in battle.
The upgrades also take place in the main hub, in addition we will also have the opportunity to take some time to better understand the background of the characters through a special menu.
The engine that moves the title is not bad at all, even if the uncertainty comes to the surface in the long run, due to the graphic repetitiveness of the game environments. Unfortunately, the design is not very inspired and does not convey originality in any way. The fluidity is palpable from the beginning, this makes the game action very lively and enjoyable.
Ultimately this Fate / Extella Link has managed to satisfy us throughout its duration, although some technical uncertainty is still evident. The main problem lies in a design that is not too inspired and an underlying repetition that slightly affects the gaming experience, which in any case carries with it due to the genre to which it belongs: the Musou.
IThe graphic side is pleasant as far as polygonal models are concerned, but the same cannot be said for the game environments, which are almost all the same due to the assets recycled several times. Also the narrative does not stand out for its originality, but luckily it lets itself be followed, even if it's mainly aimed at the most loyal fans of the series.