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If you missed our interview with Blake and Mandy, the founders and developers of this game, you can find it HERE, and recently we had a chance to try out the pre-alpha teaser. Before we jump into our impressions though, here’s a new highlight trailer.
Kova is set in space and in this game, we play as Kova, a space mercenary. The pre-alpha teaser is part of the first chapter of the game and shows Kova and the spaceship stranded on a dark and desolete planet after being interjected. The first mission is to find the minerals needed to craft and repair the spaceship in order to leave.
The aspect of Kova that catches our eye right away is the art style. It has this very angular sort of appearance and yet fits the futuristic and imaginary world very well. The background scenery of the scenes are fluid and truly show off the essence of the game. Talking about art, the main character’s design is also quite good. In terms of creating atmosphere, Kova has a droning music in the background which matches the environments quite well which never becomes overwhelming. At least in this early section, it matches well to the stranded space planet world to show an emptiness.
As catchy as any game can be to their eyes, the gameplay is the most important. For a pre-alpha segment, Kova runs well. There were no issues even for this pre-alpha slice. Kova starts off with a decent amount of abilities from weaponry to double jumps, which will be able to upgrade and learn skills. The gun itself has various functions. Other than shooting, it can also do close range melee jabs which is useful when breaking minerals. In terms of shooting, the aim is maneuvered by the player and not auto-shooting. In the teaser, it still feels a little sensitive but definitely an interesting mechanic. She is also equipped with a flashlight which helps in dark environments.
Everything is controlled through the log book/main hub. It is a control panel that lets us go through an overview of the status of Kova, the spaceship and upgrades objectives, as well as the inventory. On the bottom left of the screen are the quick status as in what needs to be recharged and crafted. One quick button will also do a quick craft panel which helps with reloading bullets and crafting other items. However, as in any role-playing game, the key is in resource management. Everything comes into factor. While this pre-alpha isn’t full of combat and enemies, it already emphasizes on the use of energy for Kova’s suit and maintaining the energy level with jumps and double jumps for example and having to recharge it before the suit takes damage.
This pre-alpha slice is just a first look at Kova and to see the game. In the trailer that follows the alpha, Kova will travel to other planets, sent out to do missions to earn credits. There will be upgrades available for the spaceship and weaponry. There are factions to work with. Games with multi-genres aim to create something different and a different experience. There are some mechanics here that definitely feel like a nice mesh and feels inspired by sci-fi genre movies and games.
KOVA is expected to release on Steam first and then will be ported to Playstation 4, Xbox One and Switch afterwards. It is currently in their final week of their Kickstarter campaign. You can check it out HERE.