Game: Destiny Connect: Tick-Tock-Travelers
System: Nintendo Switch (also on PS4)
Developer|Publisher: SYUPRO | NIS America
Age Rating: EU 7+| US E10+
Price: $39.99 US | £35.99 | € 39,99
Release Date: US 22nd | EU 25th October US| 1st November AU
Review code used, with many thanks to NIS America
The turn of the century
The town of Clocknee is celebrating the advent of a new millennium. It’s the last day of 1999 and Sherry Aldeis is hoping her father (with the special name of Truth) will finally come home to celebrate the new year together. He’s been gone for quite awhile, and Sherry is doubtful if he will actually come home.
In the afternoon Sherry and her friend, Pegreo, go into town to find out more about the explosion in the woods the grownups are talking about. They see nothing more but a hole in the ground, until very aggressive machines turn up. Just when things get very threatening they are saved by a strange boy who tells them to stay home that night.
Her father doesn’t show up, and all the food her mom had prepared for the special evening goes cold. Her mom Aria decides they should go out to see the fireworks to celebrate the new millennium in town.
It would have been better if Sherry had listened to the strange boy, because as the clock strikes 12 times suddenly comes to a halt. Strangely enough, everyone is standing still in time, but Sherry, Pegreo and her mother are very much alive. A horde of hostile animated machines appears and they get split up from Sherry’s mom.
Time for some time travel
The mystery doesn’t stop there of course, wouldn’t be much of a game if it did. The kids run back to Sherry’s house in hopes of finding her mom. Instead, the find Isaac. Made by her father it seems to protect Sherry. And believe me, she needs all the protection she can get.
First though, Isaacs time traveling gear is broken, and finding a replacement really gets the gameplay underway. Meet Dumpty Bachfaren ( Pegreo’s father and master smith). He’s somehow turned into a machine himself, but he is still very helpful to get Isaac up and running. After all, gears is what Dumpty specializes in, and gears is what makes Isaac run.
Another person who is not affected by time stopping is Doctor Cheatstein. Without him the kids would have had no idea on how to proceed! Seeing him in the game I couldn’t help but think of Doc Brown: at least one of the writers must have been a huge Back to the Future fan!
With Isaacs time traveling capabilities they look back in the past, and peer into the future to find what caused today’s problems. Time to find out why the shopping mall “Save the Queen” is at the pivotal in the story. And time learn some very interesting things about their families and the peculiar town of Clocknee.
Tinkering with skill-sets
Pardon the lengthy description of the storyline, but the story is very important to Destiny Connect. This is the kind of RPG I love. Turn based fighting, lots of options to tinker with the stats, experience going up quickly, inventive ways to win a fight from a mighty boss and mysteries to uncover.
Let’s look at the fighting skills first. Sherry, Pegreo, Isaac and later on Truth and Altana have regular attack which doesn’t cost any SP, but they also have skills. These skills are specific for each characters and are available either when your SP is at 100%, other skills at 200% and others again at 300%. Sherry for instance has Aid skills, a heat shot, a chill shot and a volt shot at her disposal in the 100% category. Gift shot and Cheer cost more, they are only available at 200%, and Miracle shot is available at 300%. If you have some Skill Elixir you can upgrade the skills to a max of five stars, getting the best use out of them.
As I said, the skills are specific for each character. Sherry has a mix of health options and some good offensive moves. Truth has skills that all have a name according to the theme of music, like Unholy Shout, Burning Soul and Symphonia. Altana’s skills all have to do with hacking and slashing, but to me, Pegreo’s skills are the most interesting. They all have to do with being a technician. His Energy Trap is something else: when you activate it, he sets up an electric cage around the enemy that only gets triggered when an enemy tries to activate his own skill. Nice!
Isaac, our protective robot, is a very interesting machine indeed. Not only can he initiate time travel, but he can also assume various forms. You see, Isaac is built up out of gears. Pegreo and Sherry take every opportunity they have to insert newly built gears into his machinery. bronze gears, silver and even gold ones make for better skills in fighting, defense etc. Along the storyline Sherry also collects other Form Gears, that allow Isaac to change form and skillsets during battle. For instance, he can go into Rescue Form to save his party members, or take on Outlaw Form.
So you see what I mean when I mention lots of tinkering?
Nice touches in battles
Sherry and co. have to fight a lot of enemies, all of them are machines that take on animate form. Like a big Ironing Iron, or a Dryer that looks suspiciously like a dog. The items our friends fight with are inventive too: Sherry has a Fashionable Hair Dryer that works very well to attach enemies with, especially when she equips it with Mods. And no matter how often I’ve seen the sequence, I always smile when she jingles it before battle. Truth has his Electric Axe (that looks like a guitar) and Altana has his Gear Slayer that looks like a chainsaw.
Your party can only have three members fighting, luckily the other two level up simultaneously. And lucky for me, levelling up is quite fast too. But then, that may be caused too by the way you are tripped by enemies constantly. It’s very hard to avoid them, which can be a pain when you want to get from A to B quickly.
A good thing that you can fast-travel once you’ve reconnoitred an area earlier on.
Often in video games you see a promotion for the game based on the cutscenes, that are cinematic in quality. I was pleasantly surprised to see that Destiny Connect looks ace too in the normal gameplay. Almost the same quality, the character move lifelike and are controlled easily. The camera can be a bit too eager even, swinging up and down. But you can lock the vertical movement too if you want.
The music and sounds in the game are great, the mystery of what’s happening begs to be investigated. The gameplay is appealing and fun. The writing is entertaining and sometimes funny. What’s not to like about Tick-Tock-Travelers?
I really enjoyed my time playing Destiny Connect. This is the kind of RPG I love. Cute looking but great battles. Lots to tinker with in equipment and skills. An interesting story and lovable characters.
Which is why I’m giving it an I Like it a Lot.