Reviews - Updated on April 7, 2022

At the end of 2018, the tactical RPG Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden left the stocks of the Swedish studio The Bearded Ladies, which has become one of the best tactics in recent years. And now, in the face of Corruption 2029, the developers have actually released a “reskin” of that game, where they replaced the post-apocalypse with a cyberpunk of the near future, and boars and mutant drakes with augmented soldiers who come to life on order through a chip and acquire various superhuman abilities. And they did the right thing by releasing it.

When the plot is not the main thing

No, you can, of course, start lamenting about the fact that such talented (and the debut release clearly proved this) people want something new. And this is a completely logical, fair reasoning. Moreover, from the point of view of the world and the plot, Corruption 2029 is a clear step back. There is really no production, commercials, a clear background here – we just know that the action takes place in a dystopian America of the not so distant future, in which devastation and terrorists who brainwash people rule.

Two groups are fighting for power here, and we are on the side of one of them and, under the close supervision of the curator, carry out various missions. At locations, you can eavesdrop on conversations, find notes and study laptops that shed light on what is happening. Everything is written with talent, but it does not pull on a full-fledged study of the world.

Missions possible

They completed the mission – they received a new weapon or a cyber-implant (an analogue of mutations from Mutant Year Zero) as a reward. If, at the same time, an additional task or test has passed, then they will give out some kind of bonus like a passive implant to increase the firing range.

The missions themselves are about the same – destroy everyone, get valuable information, save VIP, and so on. We are free to go back to where we have already been and repeat what we have already done in order to replenish the supply of first-aid kits, grenades or remote explosives.

Corruption 2029 game review

Well, how so? Why can’t I hit a visually distinguishable enemy?

Repetition is the mother of tactical learning

We saw all this in Road to Eden, and the tactical gameplay itself moved from there. It is still built on stealth, terrain reconnaissance and turn-based combat with the active use of special abilities. The same control (not the most familiar for tactical strategies, but you quickly get used to it), the same enemies in essence (there are, for example, drones that revive enemies, and units that can call for reinforcements). In the same way, we raise the fallen comrades with first-aid kits (you need to be in time in three moves).

And the same principle of passing each mission: first, in stealth mode, we quietly eliminate those who walk or stand far from the rest (you can also deliberately lure), and then we think how to deal with the rest. As you already understood, our wards can use their unique abilities – jump high and far, generate shields that freeze rays that immobilize the enemy for several moves, and more. It is also allowed to set and remotely detonate bombs that can take down several enemies at once.

However, the main thing is still to take the right position (better – at the height), competently use observation (Overwatch), shelters and the ability to split the squad to plan all sorts of ingenious chess-tactical moves.

Concentrated Tactics

So what? Repetition of the past? Yes, and a truncated repetition – in addition to the plot from Corruption 2029, they also removed full-fledged individual pumping (only very limited equipment remained with implants and new weapons, plus general squad improvements) and resource collection. I personally did not even find the opportunity to give the cannon of one fighter to another. So everything is bad? Not at all. It’s just that we have a concentrated, free from all unnecessary (in this case) tactics, and moreover, inventive and very hardcore.Corruption 2029 game review

Here they immediately show from what distance and with what chance of success it is possible to make a shot in the current turn.

Here you don’t have to waste time running through the forests, searching the nooks and crannies for all sorts of rubbish and so on. We are immediately placed on well-designed maps, where there are many worthy and differently behaving enemies (they give a light even on the easy difficulty level), a lot of shelters, rooftops and in general places for interesting tactical maneuvers.

To each – according to the task!

And the ability to split the detachment suggests that you will solve the problem of how to arrange your fighters so that the first one will detonate explosives here when two liquidators and a resuscitation drone are in the affected area; at the same time, the second one, sitting behind the cars at the checkpoint across the road, will throw a grenade at those two; and the third one at the other end of the map will immediately jump onto the roof with the help of his implants and knock down an enemy agent calling for reinforcements. That’s what I understand – tactics.

Yes, there are few slots for augmentations, but that’s why the choice of who and what to give plays an even more important role and allows you to form actually different character specializations. A sniper with the ability to jump onto rooftops, increased range, and an advantage in height is the most obvious option, of course, but he still can’t do it alone. So the rest of the improvements will have to be knocked out by completing additional tasks.

There are also some questions: why, for example, we see an enemy sitting behind incomplete cover from three meters, but the game stubbornly believes that he is not in the line of fire? Although these are more conventions of the genre than errors and shortcomings.

Such a jump is almost like a grenade!

***

Yes, in fact, Corruption 2029 is such a modification, a futuristic conversion of Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden, but not from the fans, but from the developers themselves. But there are even more pure, concentrated tactics here. No one was indignant and did not blame Frozen Synapse for the lack of pumping, plot and other things familiar to the genre – there was the main thing, namely a chic tactical model. That’s about the same situation with the “new old” work of The Bearded Ladies studio.

Pros: exciting and challenging tactical battles; picture rich in details; good work with sound.

Cons: Many missions are repetitive.

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