The end of humanity has finally happened; partly due to disease but mostly due to war over a scarcity of resources. In one of the last acts of a dying species they created a vast structure in space, known as Eden. Outfitted with eight self-evolving artificial lifeforms known as Deux Ex Machinas, the hope was that they would be able to restart humanity.
But it’s been over two thousand years since then... and unfortunately things don’t always go to plan. The first Deux Ex Machina of Eden has vanished and the other artificial lifeforms have begun fighting with each other. To try to stop the fighting, Enoa, the youngest of the Machinas, has reconstructed the minds of three young women and placed them into mechanical bodies. AIs can’t disobey ‘true humans’ and so Enoa hopes that the three women, Leben, Mikoto, and Ami will become human enough to stop the others from fighting.
CRYMACHINA has some fascinating worldbuilding but it’s a shame that the gameplay isn’t up to the same standard. Bookended between long cutscenes, you’ll be playing as one of the three mech women and must fight your way through quite short and mostly linear dungeons which usually end with a boss fight.
The dungeons are very atmospheric but feel a little bit empty. You’ll encounter enemies every so often which you’ll need to kill to gain ExP points. The more ExP points you have the more human you become, although in reality all that happens is that your stats increase. You don’t learn any new skills as you level up and so fights get stale pretty quickly.
You have a regular attack, an Auxiliary weapon above each shoulder which you can individually activate, as well as the ability to dodge and block incoming attacks. You can also get Enoa to activate certain skills such as the ability to ‘Awaken’, which will greatly increase your stats for a short time.
As long as you spend a little bit of time levelling up, the majority of fights aren’t too difficult, but they do quickly become repetitive. It doesn’t help that there isn’t a huge variety of enemies, although there are a few more interesting boss fights where you’ll need to use different tactics to succeed.
The game has a fairly short runtime (by RPG standards) of around 25-30 hours, but even then it soon begins to outstay its welcome. It’s a shame as the story really is intriguing to begin with, but after fighting your way through lots of tedious dungeons and doing the same attacks over and over again, you’ll find it hard to care about humanity’s fate.