Coromon review

by on March 31, 2022
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Platform
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Release Date

March 31, 2022

 

My love for the Pokemon series is pretty well documented at this point, but my favourite title often surprises people. I think Pokemon Black and White are the greatest monster collecting games of all time. They came along towards the end of Game Freak’s phenomenal run of DS games, where the difficulty, mechanics and amount of grind needed to become a Pokemon master was at its best. Alongside that they had a completely new cast of adorable pocket monsters. Not a single returning Pokemon could be found in the main game (not even a Pikachu!) which meant discovering brand new buddies around every corner. Why am I talking about Pokemon Black and White in a Coromon review you ask? Because although it has some issues, Coromon is in many ways the modern Black and White.

As a rare fully grown adult in the world of monster catching games, your character is about to begin his first job working at the scientific research company Lux Solis. These smart-Alecks spend all day and night creating new technology relating to and powered by Coromon, and your job there is to wander the world and beat up some massive boss monsters for their essence. So in the name of science your adventure begins, with plenty of critters to collect along the way.

As is tradition you’ll begin your journey by receiving a starter Coromon. After a brief questionnaire one of your colleagues will recommend either the fire turtle Toruga, the water shark Nibblegar or the ice bear Cubzero based on your answers (though you’re free to ignore them and pick your favourite). Then it’s out into the world and into the long grass to go and find more buddies.

A screenshot of Coromon

The combat in Coromon is functionally the same as it is in a Pokemon game. You send out one of your six Coromon to batter your opponent, choose from 4 moves of various elemental types and continue your fantasy cock fighting until one is left standing. There are also status effects like poison and sleep, as well as plenty of buffs and debuffs to throw around. It’s very familiar, but that doesn’t stop it from being entertaining.

As you wander about the world, wild Coromon will jump out at you pretty consistently and if you see one you like (or just want to catch ’em all) you should whip out your Spinners. Spinners are (you guessed it) essentially Poke Balls, so weakening wild Coromon and hoping they stay in your Spinner is the name of the game. Again this isn’t really a big change from the game that inspired it, but if it ain’t broke don’t fix it I suppose.

I could talk about the similarities Coromon has to Pokemon until the cows come home, but it also has some fantastic new progression systems. Perhaps the most compelling of these are Milestones. These little mini objectives reward you with XP every time you complete one, which is used to level up a sort of battle pass for free items. It’s great to see the notification pop up that you unlocked a milestone for winning ten battles or evolving five Coromon, it’s just a very rewarding system.

A screenshot of Coromon

Outside of the monster fighting, you’ll be making your way through a variety of environments all with their own unique gimmick. There’s a desert where you have to avoid sand so you don’t overheat, a swamp full of mushrooms to gather, and a power station with dozens of conveyor belt and door switch puzzles. As varied as these areas and gimmicks are, they’re often fairly frustrating and always go on too long. Wandering through a dark cave with constant random encounters lost for an hour isn’t my idea of a good time, and there’s a forced stealth section later on that’s honestly horrendous.

It’s a shame that these locations and their unique mechanics are so painful, because outside of battle is often where Coromon excels. Things like side quests with a trackable quest log, fast travel unlocked from the start of the game and gauntlet powers replacing HMs really set Coromon apart from the big hitters of the monster collecting market.

Out of all of these lovely features though, nothing impressed me more than the difficulty options Coromon lets you customise. There are a few presets to choose from, as well as a whole host of interesting toggles depending on your preferences. Easy mode makes items from the shop cheaper and Coromon fully heal when they level up, whereas harder difficulties even offer options for Nuzlocke veterans. It’s absolutely fantastic, and meant I was excited to jump straight back in for a challenge run the moment credits hit.

A screenshot of Coromon

Another element of Coromon I really appreciated was the aesthetic. 2D sprites will always be my preference for collectable monsters, and the designs do not disappoint. Fans of the earlier Pokemon games’ more animal based designs will be especially happy, as there are no floating gears or bin bags in Coromon.

Although the combat was probably the highlight of my experience, it isn’t without its issues. The worst of these is move accuracy. Enemy Coromon just love to use moves that reduce accuracy, and the frustration of missing four attacks in a row is just too much. Also instead of having a set amount of uses for each attack, Coromon have an SP meter that moves drain that just runs out far too quickly.

Coromon is a monster collecting game that adds some fantastic modern systems and options to the genre, but also has some truly frustrating moments. If high encounter rates and unexpected forced stealth sounds like something you can push through though, there are plenty of adorable creatures to capture and fight with.

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Positives

Fun familiar combat
Loads of adorable critters to collect
Loads of options to play your way
Milestone system is very compelling

Negatives

Some odd and frustrating puzzles and sections
Accuracy loss is infuriating
Encounter rate is really high

Editor Rating
 
Our Score
8.0

SCORE OUT OF TEN
8.0


In Short
 

Coromon isn’t without its issues, but fans of catching adorable monsters will love it.