Mixture – The Review

June 6, 2024 ·

What if you had to be paired up with someone that, from the start, you didn’t think would work? It could be someone from work, a family member you never met, or even someone on your sporting team that you are part of. No matter how hard you try, your emotions get the better of you and you still feel the same way. Do you think you would keep trying if it was for the greater good or give up and think about what if? For many of us, we may see as being forced to step out of our comfort zones and find out we have more in common than we think. But does the developer, Played With Fire, along with the publisher, Perp Games, show us what it’s like to work and explore together? Let’s find out with Mixture, for PlayStation VR2.

Mixture is a fantasy action adventure in which two enemies in an alliance of necessity traverse barren worlds in a quest for redemption. In this dual character control game, you alternate between playing as the master alchemist Sephairos and exiled knight Sola, in both first and third-person perspectives. As an odd couple, you must platform, mix materials, cast, & melee, solve puzzles, and defeat giant bosses to survive this atmospheric tale!

Before you go in and hack and slash at anything that moves, there are a few things that you should be aware of. First, make sure you have a little bit of room. You don’t want to hit anything or anyone as someone may not find it funny and that next hit could feel a little too real. Second, make sure your Sense controllers are fully charged. No need to go into a battle only to have your journey end all because you forgot to charge them. Third, I am not going to spoil anything for anyone. And finally, have some fun. With all that said, let’s continue…

When you first start the game, you have a choice. Do you want to have an easy or normal gaming experience? When you start the game, you have the choice of playing on easy or normal difficulty. After making your choice, you’ll enter the tutorial, which teaches you how to throw objects. Throwing and hitting targets are essential to the game’s central mechanics. Pressing R1 will get the mixture in hand and then you will throw it a target as this will help you get used to what you will partially be doing in the game. If you need some help with your throwing, press the ▲ button. You may also want to go into the accessibility settings to alter the turning mode. By default, it is set to smooth, but if you hit the right arrow two times, it will show you the options for the rotation speed as well as the vignette strength.

What you will find is that you, the power-hungry master alchemist Sephairos, while also controlling the Steel Moth Knight “Sola” who strikes a tenuous alliance with you. Being an alchemist, it will be your job to collect different elements in order to mix different types of potions that will help, Sola, as they hack and slash their way of different enemies and bosses within different zones of the wasteland. But you can tell as these two continue their talks, that it may take some time before they can trust each other.

Controlling Sola can be challenging at times, but not in a bad way, depending on the elements of the zones. For example, you may encounter wind that requires you to throw the mixture at a different location for Sola to get past, or you may have to navigate areas that have moving spikes. Also, as you move along, be on the lookout for golden flowers that are hidden in vases throughout. These are used as currency in a way so that Sola can upgrade via new armor and even attacks that she can learn. Remember, even though Sola is mighty, she is still a moth. But if you and Sephairos can work together just like your eyes and hands need to work together with all the action going on, it just might be a wonderful thing.

With mixing potions, they will need to be thrown. Throwing the potions can be a challenge in itself. When I first started playing, my potions would fall in front of me or not hit where I was aiming. But after a few tries, I got the hang of it. Then I remembered to use the ▲button, and it did help more times than not. When no battles are happening, you’ll notice the size difference between Sola, other characters, and the zones that surround them. Another thing you will notice is that playing as Sephairos, there will be times that if Sola happens to be unlucky at the tasks that you are controlling her to do, she will spawn at one of the last checkpoints that were activated when she goes through them the first time. This means that you will be turning your neck trying to just see where you get her going. Now, this doesn’t happen too much, but it is there. If you are sitting, hopefully, your chair can rotate as that might be helpful as well.

Let’s talk about the graphics and sound. When it comes to the graphics, I try to look at different things from the lighting to objects such as trees and characters to even the art style that is used. Anything can add or take away from the experience. While some parts may be simpler than others, keep in mind that this is a port from the Quest platform. I’m always happy to see anything that can be played on any platform, and Mixture is a mix of things that could be improved and things that stick out and help make it the experience it is. For example, the art style and lighting add to the darker scenes, and the boss battles were exciting to watch since all the conversations are done via the Language of the Light and text boxes, which are easier to read thanks to the HonsVR lenses that made things clearer and more visually appealing thanks to the lighting and colors that were used. With the sound, you get various fighting noises along with a soundtrack that compliments each of the scenes. Hearing Sola walk on different materials or engaging in battle, just kept me enjoying my time. It’s one of those soundtracks that I would love to hear in the background while I am writing as it sets the various tones that come through beautifully with the Pulse Elite headphones.

There are some things that I would love to see added. First, the PlayStation VR2 features be implemented. Haptic feedback would be great to feel when Sola gets hit or when you are collecting different minerals. Using the adaptive triggers of the Sense controllers as Sola is fighting would be a fantastic addition to the game. I would like to see more of a smooth turning adjustment in the game. For the most part, smooth turning worked well, but there were times when I had to turn my neck. For players with neck issues, this might result in an issue, but again, if you have a chair that can rotate, that should help. Additionally, the inclusion of foveated rendering and eye tracking would enhance potion throwing, particularly for challenging throws. And finally, more adventures in the Mixture universe.

Mixture gives us the hack-and-slash third-person action and adventure that if given the time, how it very well may hook you in. It also shows us that even if you don’t see the reason for working with someone, it may not be a problem if you take the time to understand why you’re working together. There are occasions when we find ourselves in situations where others have a clearer vision of our potential, even if we are unable to see it for ourselves. It is in these moments that the best possible outcome has already been envisioned.

Mixture is out now digitally for the PlayStation VR2 on the PlayStation Store and also with a physical release at a retailer near you and on the Perp Games Store. A review code was provided.

To learn more about Played With Fire, please visit their site, like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter/X, follow them on Instagram, join their Discord, and subscribe to their YouTube channel.

To learn more about Perp Games, please visit their site, like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter, follow them on Instagram, and subscribe to their YouTube channel.

In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time, Sola and I forgot to unlock a few things.

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