It’s been a while since we had a good Pikmin-like; such a strange little sub-genre, it still bears it’s parent’s name. We’ve seen the likes of Overlord come and go, and Little King’s Story is still properly lovely, but we could do with a few more, especially on PC.
If only the trailer for Masters of Anima would calm down a little. Maybe hold a shot for a second or two longer. Oh, and tell the narrator to stop shouting quite so much – it doesn’t work if you sound more like David Attenborough than Brian Blessed.
INEXPLICABLE BELLOWING OF THE TITLE aside, it actually looks rather nice, with a clean and clear art style making sure that weird magic stuff can happen without your expendable minions getting too lost on the screen. For those unlucky enough to have never played a Pikmin-like, it’s effectively a lightweight action RTS where you control up to a hundred units that protect your central character with their lives. Encounter a statue you need to push? Send some heavy units to drag it around. Big monster? Swamp it in minions, all usually mapped to a simple mouse or gamepad-friendly control system.
As is standard for the sub-genre, Masters of Anima is a purely single-player game, with most enemies being of the big and stompy variety, requiring you to maneuver your troops in and out in order to manually evade the worst of their attacks. Masters of Anima comes with some pedigree, at least: The studio behind it, Passtech Games, created the rather clever Space Run action’y Tower Defense series, so they’ve clearly got some skills at balancing tactics, strategy and twitch action. There’s every chance this one will work out, they just need to tell their narrator to calm down.
Masters of Anima is out next month on April 10th, and will cost £17/$18 (not the greatest of exchange rates, I must say…). You can wishlist it on Steam here, or nab it via the developer’s own site here.