NieR Automata (NieR) is an action role-playing game developed by Platinum Games and published by Square Enix. It had the masters of hack-and-slash games on one side, and the king of RPGs on the other. Moreover, NieR was also created from the twisted mind of legendary game director and scenario writer, Yoko Taro. With all these big names, to say that people had high expectations for the game feels like an understatement.
NieR released on February 23, 2017, with great reviews, hitting 8/10 or 9/10 scores. It sold over 2 million copies worldwide a year after its initial release. Although it failed to reach the same heights as other more-popular titles of that time, NieR was still considered a success. Nowadays, it’s considered a cult classic. It now possesses millions of fans worldwide, swearing to its excellence and great contribution to the industry.
In this article, we will look at what NieR is. Here is how it became one of the greatest hidden gems in the history of gaming.
What is NieR Automata?
NieR Automata is a loose sequel to Yoko Taro’s original Nier game back in 2010. It features brand-new characters and an entirely different setting. Nevertheless, the art style of the two games are similar and reportedly share the same universe.
NieR takes place in a ravaged, post-apocalyptic world where humanity was ultimately pushed away from their own homes. After an overwhelming alien invasion, humans had no choice but to leave their planet and escape to the moon. In an attempt to take back everything they lost, humans created an army of androids. These androids are then sent back to Earth to fight off the aliens’ army of machines.
If you know anything about Yoko Taro, then you know to expect the unexpected. The enigmatic game director is famous for his over-the-top creative choices and habit to go against the norm. The wacky, memorable boss fights, the desolate yet wonderful-looking open world, and the outlandish narrative scenarios. These are the staples of Yoko Taro, and they are all present in NieR.
How NieR Automata Plays
NieR is an action game through and through. There may be segments of clarity and peace, but you’d spend most of the time feverishly pressing your controller. At the beginning of the game, players take control of 2B, a female YoRHa android sent to take back Earth. Along with 9S, another android, you’d travel from one area to the next, fighting off alien machines left and right.
Platinum Games is famous for its great hack-and-slash combat system. You’d certainly feel that kind of refinement here. Everything is smooth, each game mechanic serves its purpose, and every encounter just feels unique.
Square Enix, on the other hand, is world-renowned for its one-of-a-kind storytelling prowess. The publisher hit it out of the park with this title as well. Every narrative beat is impactful and the stories it tells will stick with you for a long while.
Along with Yoko Taro, NieR indeed has a trinity of excellence backing it. And, dare we say, it lived up to the loftiest of expectations.
NieR is also known for its sudden gameplay changes. One moment you’d be slashing away at robots, the next you’re playing a top-down bullet-hell kind of game. These sudden changes keep players on their toes, filling every second they spend in the game with excitement.
The Legendary Soundtrack
If you love hearing great music in your games, you undoubtedly fall in love with NieR Automata. Yoko Taro did not pull any punches when it came to NieR’s soundtrack. Everything hits at the perfect time. Various moments have turned legendary because of how masterfully the music directors did their job. Give NieR’s OST a chance and we bet you’d find a score or two that you’d non-ironically love.
NieR’s OST won the award for the best game soundtrack in 2017’s Video Game Awards.
A Title Deserving of More Attention Than What It Got
Unfortunately, it is only recently that more gamers around the world learned to appreciate this wonderful game. Although it did not fail by any means when it first launched, NieR deserved more than what it got. This game is one-of-a-kind in every sense of the word. With the radically changing gameplay, the unique way of storytelling, and the in-game soundtrack of legends, NieR is something to behold.
It is true, NieR Automata is not for everyone. However, for those like us, this title will speak to your very gamer soul. NieR Automata is a hidden gem that should have been the catalyst of a generation.