A PLAGUE TALE: REQUIEM game review (4) (age rating 18+)
*all images used are screenshots from my gameplay
I’ve got one thing to say….
GAME. OF. THE. FREAKING. YEAR!!!!
That’s literally the first thing I have to say about this brilliant game, and I’m seriously not joking.
I had the pleasure of getting an early game review key for this amazing game, and you guys don’t understand how vex I’m gonna be if this game doesn’t get game of the year, or at least some award because it is PHENOMENAL, and after being a fan of the first game: A Plague Tale: Innocence, I had very high expectations.
What a wild emotional ride and I can’t wait for you all to play it too.
With that said, let’s dive straight into the review!
Are you ready to face the rats? 🐀
Spoilers for the second game will be kept to a minimum, but I will be mentioning the plot from the first game here and there, so if you haven’t played A Plague Tale: Innocence, then you should probably come back to this review a little later.
–Although if you’re reading this review and were interested in Requiem in the first place, I imagine the majority of you have probably already played Innocence haha!
What is A Plague Tale: Requiem about?
Requiem is the sequel to A Plague Tale: Innocence and continues the story of Amicia and Hugo De Rune. Siblings born in 14th century France, who have been on a long dangerous journey through their city, battling rats, the inquisition a dangerous curse, and more.
Six months have passed since then and Asobo Studio brings us back again into the dark world of the iconic siblings.
Rats rats rats and more horror galore!
The plague rats are the driving force of horrors behind Innocence, and again in Requiem, but this time they’re accompanied by a tragic story that will almost break your heart, and an array of haunting enemies.
Not only does Requiem host creepy bad guys, there’s a whole new group that will have you raising your eyebrow with suspicion throughout.
Brilliant, almost Midsommar-like villains enter Hugo and Amicia’s path that link to the story in a genius way and other scary beings pop up along the journey too.
Honestly, I can’t wait for you guys to play this game and unravel the plot for yourself. I might have to write another review, where I can talk about the story alone because PHEW! I need to talk about it!
Don’t worry, like I said, I won’t be going into any spoilers in this review, actually I’ll definitely be doing another review strictly talking about the story next week, and my reaction to the ending too!
As stated before, the story is set six months post Innocence and begins with a strong gorgeous opening scene, and the hearts of the story: Amicia, Hugo and another familiar face.
In fact, in Requiem, Amicia’s character development and mental health is very real, and deep with every decision and action she takes. The effects of the events in Innocence evidently show, leaving you the question of: Who do you want Amicia to become when you’re playing as her? Do you try to preserve the innocence she has left? Or does she become a merciless killer? It all depends on your play style! The story doesn’t necessarily change, but your personal emotions and attachment to the character will, or at least it did for me.
Her personal journey really carries the story and I can’t wait for you guys to delve in.
-Amicia is such a legend! Honestly!
As we already know from Innocence, Hugo is battling with the macula and this continues in Requiem, but on a much deeper level that hits deep within your soul.
The only drawback I felt was that there was a few chapters in the beginning that lagged a bit in terms of the story and gameplay. It felt like I was constantly going on repetitive errands, and instantly made me miss having little Hugo by our side at every moment, but let me tell you, this lag in the story only lasts a couple of chapters before you’re boosted back into the action and it doesn’t let you down.
I’m literally itching to talk about the story, but I’m holding back with every bit of strength I have haha!!
What I also found while playing the game was the strange feeling in not having Hugo by our side at EVERY MOMENT as we went on errands made me even more attached to and understanding of Amicia as a character. The way the devs (game developers) incorporate these moments gives us, not only the sense of missing Hugo by our side constantly as players of the first game, but a sense of missing from Amicia as well, as you’ll see during the game.
The quiet moments are also special in Requiem too. Just walking around, carrying your little brother or holding his hand as you go exploring were moments I found myself treasuring amongst all the action.
I did also miss the original English voice actor for Lucas, but while it definitely took me some time getting used to (because he sounded slightly older than his age), it was nice that Charlotte McBurney and Logan Hannan reprised their roles as the De Rune siblings. Lucas’s one liners did have me cracking up sometimes though haha!
From chapter 5 onwards though, boy, you better be ready.
Sidenote: Like with the first game, there’s a nice touch of having chapter recaps every time you exit and re-enter the game.
Hauntingly beautiful music
I wanted to take a moment to shout out the gorgeous and haunting music in Requiem.
Just like in Innocence, the music in Requiem is top notch. Composed by the amazing Olivier Deriviere once again, he truly knows how to set the tone of the game from the very start with the music, and really compliments and tells the story of Amicia and Hugo all on its own, from the highs, to the lows and the downright scary moments. The musical score is seriously on point.
Also, you can stream the game online with the music with no fear of copyright strikes, which is SO COOL!
The changes we see in the gameplay of Requiem compared to Innocence is quite interesting and a definite improvement. There’s almost a Tomb Raider-esque change in the gameplay that drives the story even more from fast action chase scenes to epic combat scenarios. Asobo Studio definitely succeeded in upping the anti when it comes to this.
There are moments where QTEs (Quick time events) take place to tie in with pivotal scenes and brings a bit more spice to the gameplay.
The fast pace chase scenes are something I LIVED for in the game. I love how Asobo Studio have taken a more active approach to their action scenes in game overall, delivering epic blood pumping scenes with Amicia barely scraping death many times.
Just like in Innocence, there are also collectibles to find in Requiem in the shape of feathers and flowers for Hugo and something new known as “souvenirs”, which are special mini scenes in the game you can discover as you explore.
There are quite a few accessibility options. You can disable the animated backgrounds behind the menus. Steady camera, which reduces camera movement and shaking. For Graphics, it’s the standard HDR, motion blur and chromatic aberration options.
Also for people who don’t game much or who consider themselves as “casual” players there’s options in the settings such as “invincible mode” where human enemies can’t kill you, but rats and other environmental hazards still can. There’s also aim assist, and you can take off QTEs and change the difficulty setting
Stealth and Combat
So, for the combat specifically, there’s a few things Asobo Studios bring back from the first game.
Stealth still plays a huge role in the game, but in Requiem most times you are given a choice in how you reach different goals, and this ties into what I said earlier about who you want Amicia to become as you play the game. Do you take a stealth approach, or an all guns (or should I say slings) blazing approach?
Whilst there isn’t a concrete different result if you chose to violently take out your enemies and run, or if you chose a more stealthy course of action as the story progresses, your approaches may differ as you go on.
The game also actually rewards different gameplay styles with skills that Amicia can unlock depending on how you play, which I thought was a really nice touch too.
Your weapons arsenal varies throughout the game from Amicia’s signature sling, to crossbows, alchemy and more.
Pots can be used for more than a distraction to enemies, and you no longer have to collect rocks. They are now unlimited to use, which I felt was another nice touch, but you still have to collect pots as you go.
Much of Amicia’s alchemy skills are the same, but how you use them is different and still fun. Also, just like with the first game, you can upgrade your gear.
Companions, and our sweet little brother.
As this is a no spoilers review I won’t delve into who the companions you have with you along the way are, but if you’ve played the first game you can definitely guess one!
Companions play a slightly bigger role in Requiem, with one being able to fight for you, a certain alchemist reliably there to help you. You’ll definitely want to utilise them all in this game!
And many of you will be excited to know that there ARE moments where you play as Hugo, but not necessarily in the way you may expect (or maybe you do expect, who knows haha), of course I always wish you could play as him a little more, but what you get in Requiem is definitely brilliant. You’re in for a real treat.
Plus, having him by yourself is definitely special with certain powers too (If you played the first game you already know!). 👀
The places you explore and visit in Requiem range from hauntingly dark to breathtakingly beautiful, but all of them fantastic. There’s been so much dedication and thought into every scene, many stay with you well beyond the game. I’ll post a few just so you can see for yourself. Utterly gorgeous.
I had a BLAST with photo mode. It’s brilliant and there’s a variety of options and adjustments when capturing emotional and epic scenes. Low-key I went over and beyond with all the cool photos I took. In fact every photo I’ve used in this review is from photo mode. You can adjust tilt, change depth of the field, focus and more!
You can also take out characters from scenes if you want, and the cutscenes allow you to take photos at the perfect second too.
There are plenty of picture perfect moments.
Overall, you can tell the amount of heart and dedication that was put into this emotionally driven action adventure game. From the music to the characters to the plot and scenery, a lot of hard work was put in and it was well worth the wait, although I’m an emotional wreck after that FANTASTIC ending.
Requiem can be played by a variety of gamers, from casual to hard-core and it’s definitely not one to miss. 100% you HAVE to play this game and make sure to play A Plague Tale: Innocence first. You will not be disappointed and Requiem has become one of my favourite games of all time. What a journey. Amicia and Hugo will forever be in my heart as two of my favourite characters. De Rune stan forever. I also want so much A Plague Tale merch now!
Give Asobo Studios their flowers for this one! Requiem was fantastic!
4.8 out of 5 stars!! 💫
Developer: Asobo Studio
Publisher: Focus Entertainment