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Foreclosed Review – A Short Trip to the Future (PS5)

If you’re feeling the need for more cyberpunk games, Antab Studio and Merge Games present to you Foreclosed. Featuring a comic book art style and augmentations for both the player and their weapon, is this indie title worth your time and credits? Find out in our Foreclosed PS5 review.

Foreclosed PS5 Review – Looking Good

The most obvious thing that stands out in Foreclosed is its presentation. The world is presented in comic book form, complete with typed-out and stylized sound effects whenever anything makes a loud enough noise. Most impressively, the game will often alter controls as the player moves from one panel to the next, though occasionally what’s seen on one panel doesn’t always line up with what’s on the previous panel, despite both clearly showing live “video” of what the game is rendering. Much like the rest of Foreclosed, things are a little rough around the edges but the overall experience is enjoyable.

In the world of Foreclosed, everything is ridiculously unaffordable, including people’s identities. One fine, stereotypically rainy day in the metropolis, protagonist Evan Kapnos awakens to find that his employer Securtech has inexplicably gone bankrupt, and thus his identity has been foreclosed; he has been instructed to report to a courthouse before 4 PM for an auctioning of his life. Naturally, things don’t go as planned, and before he knows it Mr. Kapnos is thrust into the center of a conspiracy involving powerful and experimental augmentations. It’s an intriguing story which shows an interesting, and terrifying, glimpse into a much more connected future, one in which even purchasing sustenance from a vending machine is tied up into someone’s identity, or lack thereof. As an example, Mr. Kapnos’ identity being frozen cuts him off from the blockchain, which runs the world’s commerce systems, and thus he can no longer purchase anything nor use his licensed firearm.

While Foreclosed has a strong start, bits of the game don’t quite hold up as well. The entire story is voiced, though much of the delivery sounds a bit rough. A woman who helps the player from early on in the game says the name of her company as “Circa-tech,” despite the company clearly spelled out as Securtech, and other characters pronouncing it as “Secure-tech.” It’s almost as if the developer said “eh, close enough” with the recordings of the character, and didn’t care to follow-up with another take.

Foreclosed PS5 Review – Leaving So Soon?

Foreclosed ends just as things start to heat up, as most players will finally have unlocked all but one or two augmentations just before the final chapter. The entire adventure can be completed in one sitting of four hours or less, with little incentive to replay most chapters, and the game’s finale resulting in two different endings depends only upon the player’s last choice. In fact, replaying chapters starts to show the narrative’s shallowness, as most “branching” dialogue results in the exact same response from other characters, no matter the choice. The plot involves something about experimental augmentations, but a lot of things are not explained very well, especially with how exactly Kapnos is clearing his name via deals with creditors.

Foreclosed is a third-person shooter for most of its short playtime, but it also slickly transitions into a first-person camera at key moments, as well as an isometric stealth-based game for a few unfortunate sections. It’s not that the change of pace is unwelcome, it’s just that the stealth is particularly unforgiving, and checkpoints during those moments are a little too spaced out, so that if you screw up you’ll need to repeat a few annoying sections as a result. One missed opportunity in particular involves the first augmentation that gets unlocked, a way to hack unprotected items. Turrets are a major pain, but to be able to turn them against your enemies would have made for a great sequence that never materialized.

Combat, when it is encountered in Foreclosed, is serviceable, and even fun at times. Kapnos’ gun is symbiotic, as he unlocks new abilities such as telekinetic bullets, which can combine with his own augmentations to become a formidable foe. Most every ability uses energy, however, and firing either charged bullets or abilities too frequently will result in an overheat, leaving the player open and vulnerable. Playing in the Hard Boiled mode (there are only two difficulty levels) means that a few hits will kill you, so overheating is not recommended. There are only two enemy types, though – one with a gun, and another with a gun and a shield. There are no boss characters to speak of, nor any cover mechanic other than ducking and just walking next to anything nearby that is low enough. Turning the gun’s symbiotic mode off does mean you have unlimited ammo, though, so combining that with some of Kapnos’ abilities helps to keep the overheats from being too frequent.

Foreclosed PS5 Review – Short, Rough, Fun

Foreclosed runs very well on the PS5, of course, and the SSD’s speed results in no load times at all for this smaller title. This is used in a cool multi-level way towards the end of the game, with seamless transitions into new areas. The DualSense is also surprisingly used in meaningful ways in Foreclosed, despite this game coming from a smaller team. The touchpad light indicates Kapnos’ current augmentation temperature, while the speaker is used whenever someone on a communications device talks to you. Haptic feedback is used like vibration, and the adaptive triggers are used lightly to simulate pulling the trigger on a pistol. These are unexpectedly nice touches on a game that otherwise doesn’t seem to go the extra mile in some aspects. More of this please, developers out there!

It’s a bit rough around the edges, but Foreclosed’s story and style are worth a look, especially for the PS+ launch price of $15.99 ($19.99 normally). When I think of my time spent in Foreclosed, I think it made for a good, short adventure that had me impressed by its presentation, but ultimately left me wanting more. More story, more combat, more world building, more consequences from my actions. Just about the only thing I didn’t want more of would be the stealth sections. So, with any luck, the open-ended nature of Foreclosed’s endings, combined with enough sales of this game, may result in us seeing a sequel down the line.

Foreclosed review code provided by the publisher. Version 1.002 reviewed on a PS5. For more information on scoring, please read our Review Policy.

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