On The Demo Floor | Babylon’s Fall

Back when this game was first announced I was fairly hyped for it. I love a lot of the games coming from Square Enix and Platinum Games tend to knock it out of the park when they are behind the wheel. Though I will admit that until recently this game has fallen  off of my radar with everything else coming out. Perhaps they just aren’t marketing it as hard, but I digress. I saw there was a demo available for Babylon’s Fall and just had to dive in and see if the game met my expectations from the original announcement to now.

Travel to Babylon

The demo opens up with an all too familiar scene in a lot of recent online games. The whole “taking a boat to a new world cliché.” However, you appear to play as a hardened criminal turned indentured servant to the Empire in their quest to excavate and climb the Ziggurat, the tower of which the town of Babylon was built. The opening scene shows this to be a grueling endeavor as it is required to equip those attempting this with an item called “Gideon’s Coffin”, which appears to give you increased abilities, as well as extra thread like extremities. It also gives the Empire the ability to restrain you. This, however, kills more people as the process of bonding with a Gideon’s Coffin can, in fact, result in death, as many from your shipment to the new land find out.

Welcome to Tartarus

This central city idea has come up quite often in recent titles, and I am honestly not sure how I feel about it. While not out on a quest to rid various locations of the supposed defenders of the tower, you will be using Tartarus to plan quests and change out equipment. You can also team up with other players within the demo, as will be available in the final product. I didn’t get a good chance to try out the multiplayer, having no friends wanting to try the game out at the time of writing. I will say, however, that I did experience some slight lag every once and awhile that would cause enemies to stay out longer than they should have, because this is an always online game, which we will come back to in a bit.

Fight with the Dynamis

Babylon’s Fall includes three classes at launch that you are told dictate what skills you can get as you progress. They seemed to boil down to a warrior/tank class, a rogue DPS class, and then a class that specializes in debuffing. I spent my time playing as the latter and kept my build to a more range-based, heavy damage build. I will say there are a few mechanics that really click when they work right, like perfect dodging out of attacks causing the game world to slow down similar to the Bayonette series. 

The Dynamis is how you use your skills primarily and can usually take the form of weapons. When I started, they took the form of two bows and, honestly, I really liked that set up. It fell in line really well with my desire to just use a bunch of bow shots and dodge around the arena. Though due to the nature of an always online service, there were times when I knew I dodged and the game simply didn’t. Here’s hoping that after launch the servers will balance out and help with that. Let’s talk about servers for a second.

Connect With Your Friends…Or Not.

With the growth of online gaming, people from all over the world are given a chance to connect and play with one another. This connectivity is more of less a golden standard to the internet age itself. Heck, we use that simple aspect to bring you pieces like this wherever you are in the world. For some reason Babylon’s Fall didn’t get that message. 

In order to play this game you need to use a Square Enix account, which is used to set your server to the one set as your country on your various accounts, because they do want you to link a PSN and Square Enix ID to play this game on the PS5. What this does is lock you into a specific server, which is fine right? It’s supposed to be designed to give you the best chance of being connected smoothly. Well, Babylon’s Fall doesn’t allow cross server play, and I don’t believe there are plans to change that later in the future. So, if I wanted to play with someone else, we either need to make new accounts to play the game and that only works if you basically buy separate copies for your new accounts. Before you think that there is not a way to fix this issue, both Final Fantasy XIV and New World have figured out how to allow instanced cross server play. 

Oh Look, Another Live Service Checkbox

Time to be the bearer of bad news when I tell you that Babylon’s Fall does in fact include a Battle Pass. Not only does it include this system, but it was fully functional within the demo. Which is nice, I suppose, for those looking to start the game early as your account progress will transfer over, but comes off as a real smack in the face at the same time because this is a full-priced game. Now Square Enix has stated that content updates and such in the future will be free, but it still doesn’t sit right with me whenever I see a Battle Pass system embedded within a full-priced game.

Graphics Time

Not too much to say regarding how Babylon’s Fall looks. It mainly looks fine, not bad and fallen apart looking like Outriders was at launch. It feels pretty clear to me that this was given next to nothing in the line of higher end graphics treatment, which is a lot different from what Platinum Games normally puts out and a real shame when I look at the studio’s previous work. I can’t say what went wrong here, but it just feels basic.

Final Thoughts

Overall, I would say what I experienced with Babylon’s Fall is just fine. If you are looking for another dodgy combat game similar to what Platinum Games has made before, then it is worth checking out. Then again I would tell you to go back and play almost anything else in their catalog. I can certainly say that the demo did not hook me into playing more of it soon. Maybe in the future when it gets a good sale price drop or probably ends up being given out for free on PS Plus I will go back to it. But right now I just feel like what I got with the demo was simply “enough” of the experience right now.