Review: Fractured Soul (3DS eShop)

So far there have been countless games on the 3DS which all use a very new idea. For example, while not entirely a new concept, Hydroventure for the 3DS included the new gameplay element of tilting the entire system 360 degrees to complete levels. Fractured Soul would be another example, its literal dual-screen gameplay is a fresh idea for the system.

For the most part in Fractured Soul, you'll control a robot as you make your way through the levels. For a platforming game, Fractured Soul is very unique; you'll have to switch between the top screen and bottom screen to progress. As an example, say there was a wall blocking your path on the bottom screen. To get past it, all you'd have to do is switch to the top screen, where there isn't a wall.

There are also a wide range of concepts throughout, one level sees the top screen being underwater, causing you to jump higher and fall slower, but only on the top screen. On the bottom screen, gravity would be normal. Another example sees the top screen being icy, therefore movement is faster but with less friction. These new ideas make for interesting puzzles; switching screens means you need to get used to the altered physics.

Then there are the spaceship shoot-em-up levels. These provide a fun escape from the platforming elements of the game by making you beat bosses. The screen switching even comes into use here; there's a bullet coming towards your ship on the bottom screen? Just switch to the top! Bosses also come into play in these levels.

There's also a rating system. Each level you complete earns you 1-5 stars depending on your time, secrets found, things like that. Gather so many stars, and you'll unlock bonus levels, which are, for the most part, quite difficult. Times are also uploaded into online leader boards where you can compete to try and set the record.

While Fractured Soul is, for the most part, an excellent title, it does have its issues. One is regarding the lack of 3D, which is why I brought up Hydroventure earlier. Neither titles are 3D on a primarily 3D system and could put people off. However, like Hydroventure, Fractured Soul has a reason to not be 3D.

Hydroventure's reason was that you have to move the screen, and therefore 3D wouldn't work. 3D would work on Fractured Soul however, but the reason for the lack of it is simple. Switching your vision from the 2D bottom screen to 3D top screen would have been very confusing. So the lack of 3D may not be a huge issue.

Another slight issue is nothing to do with gameplay, but rather the download itself; it comes in at around 3000 blocks and takes quite a while to download. This is expected though, as Fractured Soul was originally intended to be a retail game and not an eShop title.

Except for the lack of 3D, the game looks very nice and smooth, just as you'd expect from a game nowadays. Audio is a lacking slightly; music is nice but it can get a bit repetitive after a while. The game is, in general, very well presented and easy to pick up and play whenever you feel like it.

In conclusion though, Fractured Soul was somewhat better than I expected; if you're looking for a game full of new ideas and concepts, then you'll love it. The game is very large and comes with many levels and bonuses, you'll be playing Fractured Soul for a while! + Daniel Godfrey

7/10 - An interesting game with plenty of content and replay value, we definitely recommend Fractured Soul to anyone looking for something a little different.

Review copy provided by Endgame Studios

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