Samantha Eve Wilkins has such a complex and traumatic history, filled with abandonment and insecurity, and despite everything she went through and still struggles with, Atom Eve is such a warm, caring, and inspirational figure a lot of writers could learn from. Skybound Games has taken this character and put her front and centre in Invincible Presents: Atom Eve, the first ever game set in the Invincible universe. It’s safe to say there’s plenty for fans to love about its visual novel style, great writing, and simplistic turn-based combat.
For anyone that’s been watching Invincible on Amazon, most of the story going on in Invincible Presents: Atom Eve will be familiar. The death of the Guardians of the Globe and Robot’s efforts to form a new team, Omni-Man’s destruction of Chicago and his battle with his son, and the more grounded stories like everyone graduating from Reginald Vel Johnson all play their part. However, we see it all from the perspective of Eve, offering a refreshing viewpoint to every moment of chaos, and the politics that make up most of the show.
While some details are slightly different to the show, there’s a newer story that features in Invincible Presents: Atom Eve, threading together the narrative fans already know. A strange and powerful green woman called Universa arrives on Earth and attacks a power station, leaving Eve to work out what she wants and why she’s here. There’re other threats that Eve has to deal with, including someone who’s been attaching bombs to students for reasons you’ll need to work out.
With all the bigger picture stuff taking up a lot of your time, there’s still plenty of time for working out who you are and how you want to live. Eve isn’t weak-willed at all, and we’ve seen time and time again just how strong she is, both in body and mind, but that’s not to say she hasn’t been tested. Her adopted parents are awful human beings, particularly the father, as he always comes off as a complete bastard with no redeeming features whatsoever. The way they treat Eve always gets under my skin, and throughout Invincible Presents: Atom Eve, they’re no different.
Her boyfriend, Rex Splode, continues to test her patience and take their relationship for granted, leaving her emotionally vulnerable and upset, and while he can be a better person, his arrogance does nothing to make her feel loved. Eve is a tragic character, but Jill Murray has written her as a survivor – a physical embodiment of the phoenix – rising from the ashes of heartache to become stronger through the choices players will make in the 3 to 4-hour story. The writing is excellent, managing to give you funny and heartwarming moments, while ramping up the excitement through its action sequences.
The art direction is superb, presenting cutscenes through a carefully crafted comic book aesthetic. During dialogue, its visual novel style adds various facial impressions that reflect every response of dialogue choice regardless of the character. There’re plenty of conversations to have throughout Invincible Presents: Atom Eve, and depending on your answers, you’ll be able to shape Eve as a person. As you level up, you’ll be able to unlock new perks and abilities that affect dialogue choices and actions during combat. There’s also plenty of chances to increase your health, energy, critical strikes, and more.
When it comes to combat in Invincible Presents: Atom Eve, it’s rather straightforward. You have an energy bar, and every option in combat consumes a certain amount of it. Choosing carefully between defensive and offensive opportunities is key to victory, and using certain powers that can affect enemy accuracy all play into how successful you are. The strategy comes from knowing when to attack by waiting for the right window, and using everything in your arsenal to defeat whoever stands in your path.
For the first five or so chapters, the fights were rather easy, but then you get a few fights where you’re overwhelmed by too many enemies on screen. It was only when they kept missing through sheer luck that I was able to defeat them. It was only a couple of fights where this was the case, but it was still frustrating. The bigger fights never troubled me, which made losing to a quartet of drones all the more annoying. Despite these few encounters, the combat is good enough to tether together the story beats, which is what I was more engaged with throughout.
Invincible Presents: Atom Eve twists a few of the comics storylines to make Eve the focus as opposed to Mark, and I was grateful to see her face these threats head on. She is one of the best written heroes of the modern era, and Skybound has done a fine job giving her her own narrative to coincide with the main story seen in Season One of the animation. Despite some frustrating battles and some simple combat, I loved the story. Giving Atom Eve the focus makes perfect sense, and I definitely encourage fans to check this out.
Wonderful character growth
Plenty of cameos
A few unbalanced fights
Basic turn-based combat