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Timster

Reviewed By:

Review Date:

29/05/21, 05:24

Undefeated Review

When the phrase “superhero simulator” comes to a gamer’s mind, one may think of such AAA titles like “Batman: Arkham Knight” or, more prominently, “Spider-Man” with the Miles Morales game being a worthy mention. There may be a few exceptions, however, when people think of less-than-worthy titles like “Iron Man” on the Xbox 360/Playstation 2 or Marvel Cinematic tie-ins like “Thor”, “Batman Begins”, and the ill-fated “Superman” videogames. “Undefeated”, an Indie title developed by UNDEFEATED Games and published by Vantan Game Academy, is very much like a compromise between lacklustre and perfection in progress. It is a standard super-hero sim that comes close to being a “Superman”-style simulator fans have been asking for, to contrast with the beloved Arkham Knight series.

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Gameplay: BIG PUNCH!!!

"While you only get to play as one specific hero, he comes with a few powers: flight, super speed, super strength, all the basic assets a superhero needs."

While you only get to play as one specific hero, he comes with a few powers: flight, super speed, super strength, all the basic assets a superhero needs. Unfortunately, those are the only powers the game has to offer, but they most certainly leave a lasting impression! With super-strength, this game gets it right. When you punch, you PUNCH!! Everything your fist touches, and everything the shockwave from your motion passes through, gets decimated! Objects, villains, NPCs, and even making contact with a building or the pavement all feels so very satisfying like you really could pulverize the planet if the game lets you. Flight is equally good, soaring through the sky like nobody’s business either at a leisure speed or cranking it up a notch with supersonic flight. You know that superhero landing Deadpool always mentions? You BET you can perfect it in this game with a simple button input! Beware the unsuspecting bystander that so happens to walk right into your landing zone! And speed? Second best way to get around the city, or if you really want to emulate The Flash! Combined with your super strength, you can blast through objects at breakneck speed, you almost can’t tell which direction you’re going! Thankfully the game has a subtle auto-lock, which helps keep you going from one point-to-punch to another. Let’s not forget: You. Are. INVINCIBLE!! Impervious to everything, bullets bounce off you. 


The game offers a multitude of things to do in the city that requires the player’s heroic might! Occasionally debris will fall on top of an innocent bystander, needing your super strength to lift and move it and ensure the victim’s safety. Other times, you’re tasked with using your powers to put out fires that magically happen on top of building rooftops. Although, in a city lifestyle, where else are you supposed to make s’mores with the nighttime sky looming above? And, of course, there is some crimefighting when terrorists appear with military-grade weaponry, just asking for that superhero landing to crush them all. You can also do some challenge runs, that harkens back to the Arkham series or Playstation 2 Spider-Man days. The challenges stem from flying through rings and get to the finish within a time limit, to punching all of these strange machines within a time limit. They all start off easy, but each challenge offers easy medium or hard difficulty levels across the city. The core mechanic of this game, however, is with the hero-vs-villain boss fights the player gets to encounter. The villains all have different powers, are of varying degrees of difficulty, have differing patterns to learn and fight against and have health bars to help monitor how well the player is doing in the fight. The most interesting aspect is the city itself has a health gauge, as the villain will attempt to damage and destroy the city during the fight. It turns into a race against time: defeat the villain AND save the city.

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Unfortunately, this game is far from being the perfect “Superman” simulator to compete with the Arkham series. A big glaring thing to note is this title was released in 2019, made by a single team of three Japanese students, and feels incomplete with no news or word on whether this will be a fully fleshed-out game. The combat is a bit clunky in the air, not knowing if the player is going to throw a punch or do an air-slash kick. Otherwise, you really just mash a single button to punch and destroy things. Super speed is fun when you just want to, well, run around but it isn’t used for anything too practical, especially when the player can simply fly at a much faster speed. Flight is tricky; either it is the best thing in the world, or it spells out your demise when the player is trying to be precise and quick. The side missions, while simple and fun, are very generic and without variety. You only have three occurrences that happen in the game at any time: save people from fire, save people from fallen debris, or stop the terrorists. They happen so often, you start to lose interest in doing anything when it’s the same things over and over again. Not to mention, you’re usually saving the same NPC model each time. Conspiracy? Or crazy fan that wants your number? I’ll leave that question for you! The challenges are fun, flight being the easiest of the two. While not overly frustrating or difficult, the destruction challenges can leave you wondering how you’re supposed to complete them in such a timely fashion. And they’re ALL timed. 


Finally, the boss fights are the real dealbreaker for this game. Even though the player is invincible, the city is not. The villain will try to hurt you and slow you down, or else fly away at a somehow faster speed than you can actively keep up with, blasting the city all the while. It forces you to switch between punching the villain to oblivion and swooping down to “heal” the damage and recover the city’s health. It becomes a more tedious task than a fun time when you’re forced to be on the defensive and trying to save the city while the villain nearly has a full health bar. The battles seem to rely on the villain’s invisible stamina bar, or some mechanic not directly explained. It almost doesn’t feel like you’re doing any damage to the villain until a visual cue strikes, in which you have only time to either do a bit of damage or spend that time saving the city. There’s almost no in-between choice. If you’re not actively healing the city in the more difficult fights, you’ll lose and be forced to start the battle over again. You have to be so precise yet quick when saving the city, but the flight controls are so odd that you’ll find yourself landing instead. The only way you can even save the city is by flying through the energy blasts made by the villain at supersonic flight, but it’s hard to be accurate when you’re moving so quickly. The pressure gets to you! There’s also a levelling system involved, but it’s another thing that isn’t made clear either. It tells you how great of a hero you are, but doesn’t seem to do much more than that. 

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Graphics: Like From One Of My Comics!

"For an indie game made by a single team of three students, the graphics look pretty decent!"

For an indie game made by a single team of three students, the graphics look pretty decent! It uses a typical 3D style that works best for a more action-packed game, but it looks very much akin to “DC Universe Online”! It brings the sensation of the player protecting a peaceful metropolis of a city, which is surrounded by gorgeous looking water! The skybox looks phenomenal and is probably the best-looking part of the whole game. Or maybe it is the powerful-looking impacts from your punches and the near destructible environments that made me love this game! Maybe it’s both! Despite it having a cartoony yet colourful comic style to it, I can’t help but feel impressed how much detail is put into a tiny world. 


That being said, the only negative here is there’s no indication this game is being worked on any further, and there’s no telling if this will receive any further graphical polish. It looks great though and shows really strong potential. Supposedly the developer is working on something more, and this title was a demo, but not much is known yet.

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Story: WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE!?

"There isn’t much to say; there simply isn’t a story, which is really odd for a superhero game. You’re simply thrown into the mix and just exist."

There isn’t much to say; there simply isn’t a story, which is really odd for a superhero game. You’re simply thrown into the mix and just exist. Your city doesn’t have a name, nor is it identified anywhere on the globe. The hero doesn’t have a name, although it does borrow a lot of ideas from Superboy with his black t-shirt, jeans, and short hairstyle, with a muscular body to match. The terrorists aren’t part of a named organization, and it is never specified why these men with military-grade weapons and gear are threatening the city. Or that park. Or that tree. A story based on Evil Trees vs Military Faction is something I’d pay to see! They spawn where ever the game desires but never do anything until you show up. The civilians you rescue are the exact same woman! She must be stalking you and getting hurt in the process, much like Lois Lane in Superman 2 when she falls into the Niagra Falls! Or maybe she’s the secret henchwoman that lures the hero into a false sense of security? But the biggest grievance here would be the villains. You fight only three super-villains who aren’t named and don’t have backstories. They just appear when you activate the mission, do similar things, but they’re differently coloured with different power effects of wind, fire, or electricity. The only real story that happens is when you defeat the final villain, but it’s too out-of-place when there’s no actual context. 

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Value For Money: ITS FREEEEEEE!!!

"The biggest advantage this title has over others? It’s free! All you need is a Steam account and you can download it right away at no extra charge"

The biggest advantage this title has over others? It’s free! All you need is a Steam account and you can download it right away at no extra charge. Almost surprising really, considering the work that’s gone into this. Undefeated is one of those games that has one flaw for every three points of strength. It’s a very fun superhero game that leaves a decent impact, it looks pretty good for a 3D-style Indie game, it’s free and very much worth picking up if you have a few hours to waste! It, unfortunately, leaves a bit to be desired.

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Review Summary:

AVERAGE

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Gameplay: BIG PUNCH!!!

Graphics: Like From One Of My Comics!

Story: WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE!?

Value For Money: ITS FREEEEEEE!!!

You’re playing in a sandbox of a city, there’s no story of any kind available, the controls can take some getting used to, and villain combat can be frustrating. Some say this is a demo for something bigger in the works, but the game has been available since 2019, while there doesn’t appear to be any updates to the game in 2021. If the developer is working on something else, it’ll be worth the wait for sure with this game acting as a precursor! All things considered, this is not the perfect Superman clone, but neither was Bizzaro! If you love superhero games but really want to scratch that itch to play a good Superman game, this is as close as you’re going to get.

Pros:

  • Really fun to play


  • ITS FREE


  • Closest thing to a Superman game


  • Chaos in a sandbox


Cons:

  • Extremely short run length


  • No story at all


  • Side content gets boring quick

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