Forspoken review roundup: 'a tricky game to recommend'
Square Enix's Forspoken is the first big PS5 exclusive of the year, but does it live up to expectations?
Forspoken, previously known as Project Athia, is the first major PS5 exclusive of the year – and the reviews are in.
Unfortunately for Square Enix, which delayed the game multiple times, it appears that critics haven’t quite gelled with its open-world game that combines lighting fast parkour with magical combat.
Forspoken is currently sitting on an Opencritic score of 70 after 52 critic reviews, but only 30% would recommend the game. It’s unlikely that we’ll see Forspoken hitting many sites’ best PS5 games list, then.
➡️ The Shortcut Skinny: Forspoken reviews
🐉 Forspoken has an Opencritic score of 70 after 52 critic reviews
😬 Only 30% of critics recommend the new PS5 game
Forspoken is exclusive to PlayStation 5 and PC
💰 The game costs $69.99 and a Digital Deluxe Edition is available for $94.99
GameSpot gave Forspoken a mediocre 5 out of 10, saying “Forspoken is a tricky game to recommend. The lore of its world is interesting but delivered in a stilted expository manner, and the freeing sensation of taking off across the landscape in a magically-propelled sprint is sullied by the knowledge that there's nowhere to go or anything fun to do.”
IGN felt similarly but was a little kinder in its score, giving the game a 6/10. “Forspoken is the sort of game you’ve probably seen before – from its stereotypical fish-out-of-water fantasy story to its giant open-world map full of repetitive optional tasks. Its combat is flashy and fun enough to entertain across its comparatively short RPG campaign, with fights that do a good job of pushing you to shake up your use of elemental powers even when the overall variety of enemies isn’t particularly impressive.”
VG247 was also unimpressed by Forspoken. “In the cut-throat race for your attention, Forspoken feels like a new IP that’s trying to run full pelt alongside heavy-hitting franchises from other big publishers. But it ploughs, shin-first, through every hurdle along the way. Its stuttering start belies a combat system that’s worth investing the effort to learn, but takes so long to get up to full speed that it’s already on borrowed time.”
Rounding out the general consensus that Forspoken is definitely a game you don’t need to rush out and buy, GamesRadar gave the game a solid 7 out of 10 and said: “The kindest thing I can say about Forspoken is that it is aggressively fine. The good and bad parts are roughly equal such that it comes to be, in summation, an exceptionally middling experience. The magical parkour is exhilarating, but not really backed up by significance when you get to where you're going, and while half the game might have you moving from place to place, the other half is what you do when you arrive.”
Forspoken is out on January 24 for PlayStation 5 and PC. A free demo is available to download now if you’re curious to see whether you click more than critics did with the game. You can also keep up to date when all the PlayStation 5 games on the way with our PS5 games 2023 list.
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