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Neon White Review for Xbox

Neon White is a game that defies easy categorization, merging lightning-fast platforming, frantic combat, and a unique card-based resource system. As an Xbox gaming console reviewer with years of experience, I can say with confidence that Neon White stands out as a slick and special speed-running FPS that is both easy to understand and incredibly hard to put down. Its precise and elegant controls, coupled with its uncanny ability to make even an average shooter player feel untouchable and lethal, make it a captivating experience. However, the narrative stitching it all together can feel somewhat overbearing, and the story can quickly overstay its welcome.

Neon White Review for Xbox

The premise of Neon White is undeniably oddball. Sinners are plucked from purgatory and tasked with serving as parkour pest exterminators, clearing out a demon infestation in heaven as part of an annual contest where the winner gets to stay in paradise. This quirky setup is delivered through extensive visual novel segments that, while occasionally cumbersome, do not detract from the quality of the action itself. The gameplay within the levels is so compelling that it makes enduring these narrative chunks worthwhile.

Neon White  Gameplay Mechanics and Objectives

The core objective in Neon White is straightforward: kill all enemies and reach the exit as quickly as possible. However, each level is a parkour puzzle that requires players to strategically juggle finite weapons and ability cards to succeed within the allotted time limits. These cards, which grant limited use of various weapons alongside one-time secondary abilities, are the heart of Neon White’s gameplay.

Neon White Review for Xbox

Each card offers a unique combination of attack and movement capabilities. For instance, the pistol card allows for a double jump, the rifle provides a high-speed air dash, and the machine gun comes with a destructive grenade that also serves as a vertical boost. Shotguns transform into sailing fireball, rocket launchers become grappling hooks, and SMGs become devastating ground pounds. Using an ability to clear a gap, breach an obstacle, or destroy an enemy consumes the card that granted it, but another card is always available nearby.

The beauty of Neon White lies in the precise assortment of cards needed to conquer a level is always within reach. The challenge is in gathering and executing them perfectly at the right spots. This mechanic, initially intimidating, becomes second nature thanks to the game’s well-considered visual language. Sharp and simple graphics, along with deliberate use of color, guide players clearly toward their objectives, indicating barriers to smash and gaps to leap.

Momentum and Mastery:

Neon White excels in creating a marvelous sense of momentum and an outstanding ability to make players feel competent and stylish. There are numerous moments throughout the game where I felt like the greatest dead parkour assassin in the universe. These breathless moments, where I’d reach the end of a level and pick up my trophy after bounding and blasting by the seat of my pants, are immensely satisfying. Neon White’s capacity to make you look and feel good while playing is a significant achievement.

Neon White Review for Xbox

As you progress and improve, the game further encourages this mastery. Initially, it provides your own ghost to chase, allowing you to see your previous best performance and strive to beat it. Then, it reveals new shortcuts, pushing you to explore hidden jumps and exploit bits of level geometry for even tighter times. This creates a compelling “just-one-more-try” loop that is hard to resist.

Levels in Neon White range from seconds to a few minutes in length, with the sweet spot being around a minute or less. Longer levels and boss battles towards the end introduce potent new cards and traversal techniques, but these can become tiresome due to their punishing lengths. With no mid-level checkpoints by design and extremely limited health, these longer stages can be more frustrating than fun.

Visual and Audio Design:

The visual design of Neon White is another aspect worth highlighting. Its sharp, simple graphics and use of color create a clean and visually appealing experience. The character designs are heavily inspired by anime, with a colorful troupe of angst-ridden assassins that add a unique flavor to the game. The dialogue between these characters is sassy and entertaining, even if the story can sometimes feel secondary to the gameplay.

Neon White Review for Xbox

The soundtrack complements the fast-paced action perfectly, with energetic and upbeat tracks that keep you pumped and focused. The sound effects are also on point, providing satisfying feedback for every jump, shot, and explosion.

Final Thoughts:

Neon White is a quick and compulsive first-person platformer that offers a surprisingly accessible yet challenging speed-running experience. By tying combat options to traversal mechanics, it transforms every encounter into a deadly parkour puzzle that begs to be replayed in search of the perfect run and the tightest time. Despite some narrative shortcomings and occasional frustrations with longer levels, the game’s airtight level design and fantastic sense of momentum make it a standout title.

For its innovative mechanics, satisfying gameplay, and stylish presentation, I give Neon White a solid 9 out of 10. It’s a game that truly makes you feel like a parkour pro and keeps you coming back for more, one speedy run at a time.

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Related: Reviews by Korin Feyh

I've been hooked on gaming since my 1st console an Atari in 1977. Since then. I have owned or played every console I can get my hands on, I'm just a little bit addicted!