FORECLOSED – Review
Follow Genre: Action-adventure game
Developer: Antab Studio
Publisher: Merge Games
Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X, Switch
Tested on: PC

FORECLOSED – Review

Site Score
4.0
Good: The setting has potential, Comic style graphics
Bad: Controls are annoying, Fighting gamplay needs some work
User Score
1.0
(2 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 1.0/10 (2 votes cast)

FORECLOSED is yet another entry in the seemingly endless procession of cyberpunk games that have been bombarding the market lately. This time developer Antab Studio sits at the wheel with Merge Games as the publisher of this narrative-driven action-adventure game. There’s a blend of many elements here, from shooters to stealth components and even some RPG elements are thrown in for fun. Sadly, it seems like FORECLOSED tried too much with too little substance.

Story

In the dystopian cyberpunk setting of FORECLOSED, people are commodities. That means their very identity is owned by corporations – usually the ones they work for – thanks to the nifty implants everybody has ingrained straight into their brain. We play as Evan Kapnos, a low-class citizen who wakes up one day and is informed that the business that owns his identity has gone bankrupt, and therefore Evan as a person has been foreclosed. If he doesn’t show up at the courthouse before four o’clock in the afternoon, his identity will simply be auctioned off to the highest bidder. The moment he steps out of his house, somebody starts shooting at him, making it clear that something much more nefarious is going on. Evan has to run for his life and race against the clock to survive this predicament.

The game utilizes an interesting storytelling technique where all the cutscenes are interactable through minor button prompts. They blend seamlessly with the actual gameplay, certainly providing the more ‘immersive narrative’ feel the developers were going for. Since the game is very short, the plot does become rushed in places.

Graphics

The selling point of FORECLOSED is probably its graphics. It certainly is the feature with the most unique flair to it which makes it stand out from other games. Inspired by comic books, the visuals of FORECLOSED are stunning, with a lot of small details incorporated in the overall design, such as sound effects being displayed in bold text like they are in comics and the panel layout of some of the scenes. The game is a lot more colorful than the usual bleak and dark environments in cyberpunk media, which is something that we also appreciated.

Soundtrack

The music in this game is pretty good, though nothing truly stands out. You’ll get nice instrumental synth tracks to set the mood for FORECLOSED’s setting. The game has full voice acting, but the performances are subpar. Everything sounds too monotonous and as if it’s being read directly from the script instead of by voice actors who show a lot of passion for this project. Sadly, that ends up as a disappointment.

Gameplay

FORECLOSED is a narrative-driven action-adventure game first and foremost, playing as a third-person shooter in some parts, with some slight stealth and puzzle elements thrown in the mix. If you think that’s a lot, you are absolutely right, especially if you know the game isn’t even that long and can be completed in under five hours. The game uses two different types of camera: the more traditional one that the player controls while walking around, and a static cam for cutscenes or some other specific scenes.

While neither cam in itself is bad, you’ll quickly notice that the controls of the game leave something to be desired and are also non-adjustable. This becomes a pain during any fight or chase scene when you can barely direct Evan’s movements. You use a combination of gun-power and implant upgrades to fight, the latter of which you unlock when leveling up its respective skill tree, much like in any RPG. Telekinesis, summoning a shield, or giving your bullets the power of explosives, all can be acquired through the upgrade system. The problem is that using these powers, or even shooting your gun normally, draws from a stamina meter. When you use too much and the meter runs empty, your implants overheat and you get stuck in an animation of Evan holding his head in pain.

This wouldn’t even be the biggest problem if it weren’t for the fact that this meter is so incredibly tiny you can’t use your powers to their full potential. You summon a shield to protect yourself and leave cover but have to wait for the meter to refill before you can fire at the enemy. By the time that’s happened, your shield has been exhausted. It’s a vicious circle. Combine this with the fact that there are no side-quests, checkpoints are limited and the dialogue options seemingly change nothing for your conversations or where the plot is going, and it’s clear FORECLOSED is a lot of unrefined gameplay in a pretty package.

Conclusion

Somewhere deep below all the bad, we can tell the developers were trying to do something cool. There are a few interesting elements present in the game, as the start of the game sets up a story that could go somewhere and the graphics are promising. Regrettably, FORECLOSED gets dragged down by all its rough edges until it just falls short of being enjoyable. With some extra love and attention this could be an interesting game, but as it stands now, we’d wait for a massive sale before picking this one up.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 1.0/10 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
FORECLOSED - Review, 1.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
Jessica


Games are my escape and writing is my passion.

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