Mato Anomalies – Is it Worth The Buy? (Review)
Is the neo-futuristic city of Mato worth the $40 price tag it comes with?
Mato Anomalies is a brand-new JRPG by Arrowiz. It invites you to explore its titular city of Mato and uncover its darkest secrets.
You get to play as Doe the detective and Gram the shaman. Each of them has unique abilities which offer different gameplay and perspectives of the game’s world.
In this review, we’ll dive into what Mato Anomalies is and what it has to offer and decide whether it’s worth its $40 price tag or not.
What is Mato Anomalies?
Mato Anomalies is a neo-futuristic mystery JRPG. The game is divided into two halves, as you get to play as two different protagonists.
First, you have the detective Doe who, during his investigations, ends up entering an interdimensional rift known as a Lair. Here, he is attacked by strange demonic creatures but is saved by Gram.
These strange rifts appear to be used by certain people for unknown purposes. Who are they? What do they want? These are the questions that propel Doe’s investigations.
While playing as Doe, you will get to explore the neo-futuristic city of Mato as you uncover clues, follow leads, and interrogate suspects to learn the truth about the rifts.
For the most part, Doe’s sections have you walking around the city and speaking with other characters. These interactions are usually shown in a Visual Novel format.
On the other hand, you also get to play as Gram. After rescuing Doe, Gram agrees to help Doe uncover the truth. While Doe explores the city, Gram will explore the different Lairs.
Unlike Doe, Gram is adept at combat. As such, his sections play more like a standard dungeon-crawling JRPG with turn-based combat.
Strong World and Story
The most compelling element of Mato Anomalies is its world and story. If you love a good mystery, you’re in the right place! Slowly piecing the story together is satisfying and the writing is solid overall.
However, some players might feel that it’s all a bit too familiar. It’s no surprise to see that this game gets compared to the Persona series of games as the setup is fairly similar.
Despite that, the story and world are interesting. The game manages to carve its own identity with its bleak neo-futuristic setting and central mystery.
On top of that, some of your actions and dialogue choices can also impact the story. This leads to different endings, so keep that in mind if you love or hate them!
To top it all off, the game has an interesting and unique art style. It’s not high-fidelity graphics, but it’s stylized well enough to have its charm.
Standard Unchallenging Gameplay
The biggest weakness of the game is its gameplay. Simply put, it doesn’t offer much interest.
Turn-based combat sections are very standard with nothing in particular to stand out. The game is also just very easy even on Hard difficulty.
For the most part, combat will feel more like an annoyance than anything. There are a couple of challenging fights that do get fun enough, but they’re few and far between.
Exploring the city of Mato as Doe is also not particularly amazing. The city itself is interesting, but there’s not much going on in terms of gameplay. You will mostly be fulfilling main quests.
There are also some side quests you can complete, but they’re also very uninteresting for the most part.
The highlight of the gameplay is the Mind Hack interrogation sections. These are done when playing as Doe and take the form of card-based combat.
In these interrogations, you will need to play your cards right quite literally! This involves wearing down the other character’s resistance so that they open up and answer your questions.
However, this won’t be so easy, as their inner demons will manifest in various forms and attempt to impede your progress.
Is Mato Anomalies Worth Buying?
If you’re looking for a neo-futuristic JRPG with an interesting central mystery carrying its plot, you might want to consider buying the game.
If anything at all about the game’s world and character sounded compelling to you, you might be in for a good time. We recommend waiting for a sale, however.
That said, don’t buy this game if you want challenging or unique gameplay. The gameplay is just completely standard and unchallenging, which brings the game’s quality down.
There are better games in the genre to get if you’re purely gameplay-driven. But there are very few JRPGs that offer a mature bleak neo-futuristic world to explore, so story-driven players should find something to love in Mato Anomalies.
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