ReCore Review

ReCore Review Darryl Linington
Lasting Appeal
Fun, but a little too big.
User Rating: 7.9 (4 votes)

ReCore is a title that caught my attention back in 2015. When the announcement trailer dropped, those who watched it were introduced to the game’s protagonist “Joule Adams.” During the opening scene, Joule could be seen seeking shelter from a sandstorm with her mechanical canine companion, Mack.

As revealed by the trailer, once the storm had passed, Joule and Mack set out into the desert to scavenge for parts; however, the duo is attacked by rogue Corebots… Joule is quick to remove the core from one of the enemies, but soon the two find themselves outnumbered… Mack makes the ultimate sacrifice and ultimately explodes to save Joule, leaving his core behind. Joule then takes Mack’s Core and inserts it into an inactive Corebot. Once activated, Joule sends out a sigh of relief, which is followed by a lighthearted one-liner.  The duo then venture on, only to face what seems like a much larger Corebot. The trailer fades and a silhouette of Joule and other robots can be seen.

It’s a rather captivating trailer, and it really caught my attention; however, does the full release live up to expectations? Well, it’s time to find out.

Recore, which was published by Microsoft and developed by Armature Studio and Comcept, begins on the desert world of Far Eden and is set roughly 200 years in the future. During the early 2020s, a disease called the “Dust Devil Plague” began to ravage the Earth. An organisation named Mandate led global efforts to fight the disease. As the Earth became uninhabitable, Mandate launched several missions to a new planet known as Far Eden. Far Eden was discovered during the first decades of the 21st century, and was many light-years away. Several thousand robotic machines known as corebots were sent to build atmospheric processing facilities on Far Eden, and the first group of colonists was sent. The colonists were to hibernate in cryo-sleep for 200 years while the terraforming process finished. During this time, many of the colonists vanished, and the Corebots became corrupted.

Fast forward to present day on Far Eden, and Joule and her canine companion have come out of cryo-sleep and have set out on an expedition to find a power source in order to get their Crawler back online (cryo-sleep maintenance habitat). After a hop, skip and a jump though the vast open-world desert, Joule and Mack jump into their first boss battle. Once the battle is complete, Joule and Mack extract a Core that neither of them recognise. With the battle being so intense, Mack is damaged and needs a repair. After another hop, skip and a jump Joule and Mack arrive back at the Crawler in order to turn the lights back on. This is where Joule finds out that the terraforming process had failed. They both then set out to find out what went wrong and possibly find a way to restart the process.

I will end the story synopsis there, in order to avoid spoilers. Overall, when it comes to story, ReCore has a great – yet lean – storyline. This is something we saw in older styled video games; however, this approach works well when it comes to balancing out storyline and gameplay in this title. From what you get to experience, in terms of story, it is more than enough to keep you going from start to finish. To add to this, the storyline is well-scripted, with each voice artist delivering each line in a professional manner.

While the storyline is slightly lean, ReCore does feature a great combat system. While you start the game with just one Corebot companion, Mack, you soon find yourself with five. Each fully customisable Corebot can be switched out on the fly at the click of a button, which makes things easier than having to run back and forth in order to switch them out. While I won’t go into specifics, in order to avoid spoilers, each Corebot companion has a different ability that will assist Joule in her quest. Corebots also assist in combat, which makes traversing the desert and overcoming enemies even more fun.

Speaking of combat, this, apart from the assortment of platformer styled puzzles, is a major highlight in ReCore. Each enemy is colour coded, which means that Joule will need to switch – which is also done on the fly – between coloured ammo types in order to take that specific coloured enemy down quicker. Granted, this sounds slightly simplistic, but it all gets a bit chaotic, frantic, and challenging when you are facing a swarm of multiple coloured enemies that will stop at nothing to destroy the player. Another combat highlight is building your combo meter, which will ultimately allow Joule to deal more damage to enemies. Often, when faced with multiple enemies, you will find yourself, ducking, diving, and boosting out of the way of incoming enemy fire… it’s a fantastic thing to experience, and ultimately makes ReCore a hell of a lot of fun to play.

With story and combat out of the way, I can officially say that ReCore is a visually breathtaking title. From the colourful dungeons to the sand swept deserts of New Eden, players will explore a beautifully crafted open-world that is unfortunately, a little too big and too barren. This is my only issue with ReCore, yes it’s beautiful, but it’s just way too big. Granted there is a fast travel option; however, like most games, you will need to make your way to your destination before you can fast travel back and forth. Additionally, the player’s progression is slightly hampered as you tend to reach an oversized area only to realise you need to travel back and forth to collect various power cells to open a door that is blocking your path. If the world was not overly large, ReCore would offer up a more fluid gameplay experience that is well-balanced between combat and exploration. Granted, exploration is fun at first, but once you get near the end of this title, travelling back and forth becomes a chore.

Overall, ReCore is a great title and a must play… It is visually impressive and offers up loads of hours of fun combat. While the storyline is slightly lean, it fits in perfectly and balances this title out rather well. While ReCore excels in visuals and fun-factor, the open-world is too large, which makes completing missions a bit of a chore at times.

Overall, if you are looking for a great looking and fun title and don’t mind trudging it out in an overly large world, then I can happily recommend ReCore.

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Editor of Tech IT Out. Former radio host of Former Editor of IT News Africa and ITF Gaming. All round techie, gamer and entrepreneur. For Editorial Enquiries Contact: or via +27788021400.