Dual Core plays like a classic arcade style game that is updated for the modern times. Two security drones have been activated on a human colony space station on Europa. They alone must discover what has transpired there. The two are also not alone on the space station like they thought. As they explore the station they come across aliens, and other robots that they must fight in order to survive. Little by little they discover the digital logs that the humans left behind.
What’s great about Dual Core is that it gets straight to the action but there is a little mystery involved as well. You don’t know what lurks around every corner. You explore a different room of the space station in each level. Each level is different from the previous one. In a game like this, each level could have easily been predictable. Thank goodness that wasn’t the case. Each level is full of its own puzzles, enemies, and mystery. There are 3 modes to choose from: Story, Arcade, and Versus. In story mode, you don’t have to play solo. You can play with up to 4 people in story mode. With all the aliens and other droids on the station having someone to help you comes in handy. It is very hard nowadays to find a game with local co-op in story mode. Arcade mode is all about surviving as many as waves as you can. There are no missions involved and other players can join in as well. Versus mode is slightly different but not by much. You and your friends battle each other in an arena.
Even if you don’t have others to join you in story mode you still Corby to help you along the way. No matter how many times he gets destroyed you can always revive him. He moves and functions on his own without you having to do anything. You can also enjoy Arcade and Versus alone as well. There is no online multiplayer action available the game. All three modes are enjoyable in their own ways. The drawback to story mode is that when you die you have to start that room all over again from the beginning. If you die a lot it can get annoying very quick. Being able to switch modes, take a break, and battle for the heck of it was fun. It has something for the players that don’t enjoy adventure type games.
The great thing is there are a lot of items available on each level. If you collect 10 green crystals you get 1 upgrade point. Upgrade points allow you to upgrade your abilities or Corby’s. Blue crystals regenerate HP, and red crystals raise your HP by one point. Crystals are gained through either destroying an enemy or box. Weapons are also available in each level. These weapons definitely come in handy and there is a great variety. You can get smoke bombs, ice bombs, an extra droid to help you battle, health, powerful lasers, and homing rockets. Once you have them you can use them anytime you want.
Dual Core makes great use of the Wii U gamepad which sadly not too many games do. You can switch between your TV or gamepad anytime you want. Another feature of the gamepad many games don’t use is the motion controls. There are some instances in the game where you had to turn a wheel to open a door. In order to do this in the game, you had to actually turn your gamepad as well. A lot of games on the Wii U just left this feature behind and it’s great that Dual Core didn’t. To move your robot around you use the left analog stick on the gamepad, fire with the right analog stick or ZR button. Dual Core also lets you use the Wii remote and Nunchuck if you prefer. The security droids respond well to commands.
Dual Core isn’t a complex game that requires strategy. The only objectives in story mode are to solve the puzzles and defeat the enemies in each level. It wasn’t overly challenging to the point where you wanted to break something. I didn’t feel like the game was too easy either where I got bored. The only thing that is missing is checkpoints. The lack of checkpoints wasn’t the right way to make the game more challenging. There was a lot of action where you want it to be and no action in some parts where you needed a break. What I loved most is not knowing what was going to come up next.
The graphics are vibrant, full of detail, and colorful. I loved that the cutscenes made me feel like I was watching a movie. When in multiplayer mode each droid comes in a different color. The vibrant colors of the power lasers add to the fun during the action. The characters don’t speak but the game does have a pretty good soundtrack. The game has futuristic/techno music playing as soon as you turn it on. The music also plays during gameplay too. From falling rain to explosions just about everything in the game has a sound effect. It is also a game that is very user-friendly. You don’t need to be an expert to play or enjoy it. Anyone from kids to adults can play. Even if you beat the story mode you can still replay the other modes as much as you want giving the game good replay value. It’s a fun game to play with friends in any mode, or by yourself. Dual Core is definitely one of the best games from the Wii U eshop I have played.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Nintendo Wii U code was provided to Brash Games for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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