Yeager preview - "Exhilarating monster hunts, but with lifeless eyes"
With your weapon of choice in hand and your trusty Retainer by your side, Yeager lets you embark on a monster-hunting adventure on mobile across the breathtaking world of Ekors. You'll not only encounter majestic beasts in the wild, but you'll also get to enhance your own strength with the powerful essence of Kallar - and look hella cool doing so.
While the premise of this new action RPG from IGG sounds absolutely cool, is it worth the limited real estate on your phone and in your schedule?Table of contents:
THE VISUALS OF YEAGERThe story of Yeager is told in both voiced and non-voiced 3d cut scenes, interspersed with 2D narratives that talk about the history of the planet or certain backstories from characters. While the graphics do look lovely during combat (which I'll talk about in more detail later on), I find the cut scenes a bit lacking in flavour, particularly for the ones in 3D.
The characters here suffer from the very outdated and dreaded "dead eye syndrome" old 3D games used to have, which is a little unforgivable now considering the calibre of mobile games nowadays. It definitely takes away from the immersion, which is a shame given how engaging the combat can be.
During battles with gigantic beasts and majestic monsters, the graphics and animation in Yeager truly shine. Combat is definitely action-packed, with the animations and movements of the monsters - not to mention their designs as well - completely breathtaking. Each battle really does feel fast-paced thanks to the amazing combat moves based on your weapon of choice. Monsters feel larger-than-life across the gorgeous landscapes in the background as well.
Your character itself looks pretty cool, given how you can customise your avatar with such meticulous detail from the get-go. The gear you equip also reflects how your character actually looks while you're running around the world, which makes collecting those equipment pieces an absolute joy.
YEAGER GAMEPLAYTypical of its genre, Yeager features both main quests and side quests you can take on, along with a number of extra stuff you can do when you're feeling a bit bored of the main campaign. You can hunt past beasts and farm for materials, as well as join forces with other players to take on bigger bosses and challenges.
You can also spend forever just tinkering around with items on the menu. In particular, I enjoyed how customisable the combat strategy can be thanks to the five types of weapons you can wield (Hunting Sword, Force Hammer, Fury Blades, Flux Blaster and Eidolon Spear). Each weapon has its own branching school of skills with different abilities you can unleash during combat. Personally, I absolutely adored the swiftness of the dual swords, which can damage monsters' specific parts quickly and efficiently when the need calls for it.
You can also collect Retainers in the game, which work as a sort of pet system where your companions can help you out as you're exploring the world around you.
WHAT'S THE APPEAL?In the sea of too-many MMORPGs on mobile these days, I found it a tad difficult to stick with Yeager and pick it over the other choices in the same genre. Sure, the battles do feel adrenaline-pumping, and taking down huge beasts feels immensely satisfying. I also love how you can choose the style that suits you best when it comes to your weapons and your combat strategy.
What probably really threw me off was how lifeless the characters look in general, whether they're talking to each other during cut scenes or just standing around the main headquarters waiting for an adventurer to approach them. It just feels a little unacceptable these days - and to think my graphics settings were already set to the highest level.
Speaking of settings, my Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite (4GB RAM) somehow couldn't handle the highest settings, so I had to test it out on low (which led to terrible gameplay and choppy footage). My Samsung Galaxy S21 FE phone, however, did just fine (8 GB RAM).
Anyway, it actually would have made more sense, in my opinion, if all cut scenes were replaced with the 2D artwork (which is gorgeous) instead - it certainly beats having to go through each scene staring at 3D NPCs with dead eyes. Still, Yeager does offer some exciting moments when you're out there hunting beasts. I really do hope the graphics improve at some point before the official release, if only to make the game even more engaging.