Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle Preview (Second Round)

About two weeks ago we told you the first details on one of the games that most surprised gamers last E3: Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle. Of the new creature of Ubisoft we talked about it far and wide without ever getting to a point due to inadequate evidence. Last 17 July we were guests of the Milanese division of Ubisoft, in which the game is in development and which we would like to thank, for an in-depth test of Kingdom Battle, coming later this month on Nintendo Switch. Could he have convinced us even more than last time? Find out in our preview.


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Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle
Tom Phan or…?

After having seen and analyzed far and wide the first demo (which we told you previously) we were presented with a recently compiled build representing the finished title. A universe full of color and bad rabbits has opened to our eyes - for that we always refer you to the last preview and future review - but also of dark enigmas and sound best… swearwords.

We thought that Kingdom Battle was one of those titles suitable for newbies and not for those who strategically eat them for breakfast ... Well we were wrong

This is because Ubisoft has made available to us two different worlds present in the title, arriving on August 29th, that is, the end of the first - the one now doting on all aspects - and the third, totally unpublished. The first section presented us with two simple fights, which can be solved in about two / three minutes, in which the enemies were not a problem. So far we could think that Kingdom Battle was one of those complicated titles for the less accustomed to the genre but a yawning one for those who, the strategists, eat them for breakfast. To upset this idea we thought the developers, who kindly gave us a hand throughout the test, presenting us an advanced section visible only after many hours of play. The third worldIn fact, it totally deviates from everything we have seen so far of this spin-off: joy, colors and cheerfulness make room for a gloomy cemetery, full of fog and pitfalls. Here we have had the opportunity to see how the game becomes, instead, bad and punitive if the user faces it without worrying in the least about everything around it. The first battle that was presented to us, in fact, sees our large group of heroes having to face an infinite series of enemy rabbids whose purpose is to prevent us from getting to the designated area to complete the mission and continue in our task. During this battle we had the first demonstration on how the combat system is like wine: it improves over time. As the hours of play pass, in fact, we will have the opportunity to build our favorite team both for functionality (therefore the synergy between the various secondary moves) and for skills - to be unlocked in the skill tree we will talk about later - allowing combinations in able to overcome even particularly difficult sections like this in a rather easy way, as we were shown by the developers themselves. Each hero has, in fact, unique abilities and peculiarities: for example a team composed of Mario, Rabbid Yoshi and Luigi is able to annihilate enemies from a distance while the plumber dressed in red in the company of the Rabbid versions of Luigi and Peach is in able to fight hand to hand.

Combining these skills and synergies is therefore essential.

We managed to meet one of the bosses featured in Kingdom Battle: Phantom. As it was possible to see at the Treehouse, during the last E3, Bowser Jr. came into possession of a particular Rabbid capable of creating more powerful enemies starting from a base (another rabbit) and a common object - a banana in the case of Rabbid Kong or… well we don't want to spoil the surprise in this case - to be able to create enemies that can face and destroy Mario. We do not want to spoil anything about this boss but from what we have seen these particular enemies will be a fundamental pivot of our adventures and there will be, even here, the hilarious moments that immediately characterized Kingdom Battle combined with loud curses caused by the difficulty. The developers also showed us an easier mode, suitable for those less accustomed to the genre, which you can start before any fight. This will increase the damage we will inflict and decrease the damage we will suffer and allows anyone to appreciate the storyline and overcome even the most challenging fights.



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To make the tree you need wood ...
Skills are essential to be able to take advantage of the most interesting gameplay mechanics

The focal point of our experience at this tour was it skill tree, finally testable. By completing the fights we will be awarded a rating based on the number of turns we used to destroy the enemies and if we took home victory with all team members. In the summary screen, the one with the grade assigned to us, we will bring home in addition to gold coins - which we will need to buy weapons once unlocked - also some special purple spheres. These are used to enhance our characters in a tree system with four categories: movements, attacks, techniques and others. In the first category we will find all the secondary skills that will allow us greater area of ​​movement, greater damage with slips or the possibility of being able to jump on enemies and for how many times to do it. These skills are necessary in order to take advantage of some of the most interesting gameplay mechanics; in fact our heroes will not be able to inflict damage only by attacking with the weapons at their disposal but also with slips and using the team jump - where one of our allies will throw us in a certain position in a variant of the infernal catapult of the twins Holly and Benji's Derrick - and using the skill tree to enhance them it will be possible to lengthen chain more of these actions and inflict greater damage to the enemy. In attacks we will find upgrades for the weapons, both main and secondary, of our characters while in techniques we will be able to increase the degree of the specific moves that each hero possesses: for example Rabbid Peach can activate an area cure or Mario the possibility of attacking any enemy yes move in front of him, during their turn. In the special category we will be able to reduce the number of turns to wait before reactivating them or strengthening them in order to make them last longer, essential for beating even the most difficult enemies. In the other category, however, we will be able to increase the life bar of the various heroes, the movement capacity or the amount of life points that can be recovered with mushrooms.

To complete even the most difficult stages it will be important to make good use of the skill tree and unlock ever stronger weapons. The advice that the developers gave us during these more complicated sections was to check the effects of the weapons and use those that are closest to our style or the characters we use.: for example it is possible to use weapons that inflict the bounce status - which throws enemies from the ground - in combination with Mario's ability that allows you to attack anyone who moves, in doing so we will have an opponent attacked twice (once from the attack with bounce effect and the other from Mario) thus increasing the chances of victory.


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Comment If after the previous test we had some doubts about the combat system, these were wiped out during the session we were able to face in one of the hottest summers in recent years. In the demo we tested, in fact, it was possible to fully exploit the possibilities offered by the gameplay and this led us to understand how the title is not only suitable for newcomers to the genre but also for experts. The only doubt we have concerns the calibration of the difficulty, we saw in the first part of our test that the title turned out to be too easy while in one of the advanced sections everything was already more problematic. Every move had to be carefully thought out and acting in a hurry was not exactly the best way to continue, on pain of death and having to repeat a fight for over 10/15 minutes, we hope that, playing in hand, everything is more balanced and captivating. Pros and cons The combat system convinces at an advanced stage
Skill Tree allows for excellent customization x Calibration of the difficulty to be evaluated

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