If you can live with the loading screens (or wait for the patch that fixes the problem), like to explore, and if you are a fan of challenging platformers, you should undoubtedly give Recore a try. It is also part of the Xbox Play Anywhere initiative, so if you buy the game on Xbox One, you can also play it on the PC and vice versa, and it carries a smaller price tag than most other console-exclusives. There's plenty of entertainment value to be found here thanks to an 18-20 hour campaign, even if there are some flaws that hold it back.
ReCore's missteps are a real shame, because it can be quite charming otherwise. It has the heart of a PS2 or Gamecube-era platformer, with its floating lifebars, bright laser beams that fill the screen like a Dreamcast shoot-'em-up, and glowing gems that bounce around. Amongst all the slick, modern day video game productions, it stands out as an endearing throwback.
I wanted to like it more, and had it not overstayed its welcome, I would have. But in the end, like its robots, ReCore is a game with a bright soul encased in parts that are used well past their prime.
Recore isn’t a disaster, as much as the bizarre structure and hoops it made me jump through left a bad taste in my mouth. At its heart, there’s a game with some good ideas and great spins on action-game conceits that don’t see a lot of play this console generation. When it’s working, Recore is a game that feels evocative of a different era of action games. But in its final half, Comcept and Armature let collect-a-thon structure and a poorly realized open world drag the whole thing back down to earth.
There's a good game buried somewhere in ReCore, but it's lost somewhere in the massive inconveniences they throw at you. From constantly refusing to let the player move on until they complete side content (even in the middle of dungeons) to loading times that put Sonic 2006 to shame. This ensures that ReCore starts off interestingly and ends up horrid.
Despite some issues, I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with Recore, thanks to its engaging gameplay experience, not counting the repetitive combat, and well done story, featuring some very interesting lore. The game developed by Comcept and Armature Studio isn’t perfect by any means, but it has so many interesting twists that it’s difficult not to like it, if one can overlook some glaring issues that ultimately bring the experience down a bit.
It is good, though. In spite of everything dragging it down, it’s a fun ride packed with stuff to do, from optional areas to replayable dungeons to passive “hunting” quests that reward players for taking out certain enemies using certain attacks. New Eden isn’t as big as No Man’s Sky‘s universe or even Far Cry 4‘s mountainous terrain, but it’s got far more compelling reasons to stick around.
Plus that little puppy robot is too, too cute.
USGamer 3/5 stars
ReCore is a style of game we haven't seen in a while. Part Mega Man Legends, part Metroid Prime, ReCore puts exploration and platforming at the forefront. With your trusty corebot pals, you'll double jump and dash through an open world and some damned fiendish dungeons. While ReCore trips up a bit with some odd combat and gating mechanics, it's still worth your time if you remember how platforming was in the old days.
God Is A Geek 8/10
Wearing its influences so proudly is one of ReCore’s greatest strengths. It borrows unashamedly, but with such respect and ingenuity that it still manages to feel unique to itself. While the core mechanics will be familiar to any gamer with enough experience, there’s enough here to ensure that ReCore feels like something fresh and fun.]
ReCore is a game that has quite literally every element I look for in a hugely successful, triple A game; one that I know I will enjoy going back to when I just want to go out and explore or try something different, or find something I missed in my first run. The game has flaws aplenty, some are just downright unforgivable. So if you can overlook the flaws, or wait for a patch to come in I could not recommend this game anymore. ReCore is truly a diamond set deep in the rough.
Press-Start AU 7/10
The sum is lesser than its parts and nothing ever quite reaches the high highs that these games that came before it did. Everything is still enjoyable, mind you, but there’s just something missing. Some extra polish, the little details, that keep ReCore from being an instant masterpiece of guaranteed success. To come back to my question, it’s obvious that most of ReCore’s budget went into perfecting the gameplay. But with that came a sacrifice. And that sacrifice was visual presentation and polish. ReCore is a game for those who yearn for an experience reminiscent of games from the fifth and sixth generation of console gaming – and in today’s gaming climate, I think that’s incredibly brave.
PCWorld 2.5/5 stars
As I said, the most disappointing part of ReCore is that it starts so strong. I haven’t spent nearly enough time on what ReCore gets right, so numerous and egregious are its failings. But your robot companions? Adorable. The platforming? Extremely responsive, and as entertaining as anything in Tomb Raider or Uncharted. But ReCore is a chore. A needless chore, with gates so artificial it ruins what’s otherwise a lovingly crafted universe. Go here, fetch a random collectible—that’s not enough nowadays, and especially not when the game doesn’t even bother to dress it up with a hint of motive. Couple that with the lengthy load times and the overall lack of polish, and I’m going to have to recommend avoiding this one.
Somewhere in ReCore is a good game. Joule and her companions are instantly likable. Far Eden's tale is an intriguing one. Thanks to her agility and rocket boots, Joule is a satisfying character to control. The game's core (apologies for using a pun I'd avoided this whole review) is solid. It's just too bad that the frame supporting it isn't.
Windows Central 4/5 stars
Despite its imperfections, ReCore is exactly the type of game I want Microsoft Studios to take seriously. ReCore leans on some beloved gameplay conventions while injecting injected some of its own, gloriously unique and fulfilling elements. The RPG layer provides boatloads of additional gameplay and the setting, story and characters are just something I want to see more of.
It's all a shame because ReCore shows so much promise in its opening hours. It's easy to envision a way in which all those ideas could manifest into something great. They don't, though. Instead, it's just a jumble of mechanics that never jell, gameplay that grows stale far too quick, and insulting design. System failure.
On a separate note, I would like to say that after Quantum Break—which was a personal disappointment for me even though many others on our staff loved it—I somewhat lost faith in Microsoft exclusives. Games like Quantum Break felt unfulfilling because they demanded sequels. Halo 5’s campaign was the same way. ReCore is not only fun from the start, but it leaves you satisfied. That has to be the best part of the overall package.
While not lackluster enough to be considered a bad game, there are enough stumbles and hiccups here to prevent this effort from Armature and Comcept from living up to its potential. It remains to be seen whether or not there’s going to be enough love for this odd exclusive to get a sequel, but considering the foundation in place, a ReCore 2 wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.
I didn’t expect ReCore to be quite as big as it is, and from the looks of things, it’s possible its developers didn’t either. Its world, while interesting to explore for a good while, is ultimately too big with too little happening in it to be a totally serviceable housing for the strong combat and platforming gameplay within. It feels like a great, arcadey action platformer spread across too big a canvas, and it asks you to draw back over the same lines a few too many times