Star Rail Closed Beta 2

Star Rail Closed Beta 2

There's a lot to be excited about with Honkai: Star Rail than what was shown during its second closed beta, such as the breathtaking definitive animations for characters like March 7 and Kafka.  (Screenshots courtesy of HoYverse)

There’s a lot to be excited about with Honkai: Star Rail than what was shown during its second closed beta, such as the breathtaking definitive animations for characters like March 7 and Kafka. (Screenshots courtesy of HoYverse)

Honkai: Star RailThe company’s second closed beta phase ended on Thursday (June 15) after being active for three weeks.

From what I’ve seen of the game during the closed beta, there’s a lot to be excited about. Honkai: Star Rail once it is fully released.

We’ll do this overview of the Honkai: Star Rail closed beta without spoilers, but you can browse streams and play if you already want to see what the developers have let beta testers know about the game’s plot so far.

For those who don’t know, Honkai: Star Rail is the last installment of honkai series of games made by HoyoVerse.

Although it exists in the same shared universe as its predecessor, 3rd Honkai Impact, star trail it’s your own narrative driven by a desire to explore the universe.

And you can see from the start that star trail is in fact its own story, keeping the spirit of the honkai Series.

While star trailStellaron’s is a similar serious threat as the titular Honkai of 3rd Honkai Impactthe difference is that Honkai is a cyclical natural phenomenon destined to redefine the universe.

In contrast, Stellaron is a ‘Cancer of All Worlds’ threat with an unknown origin destined to destroy said universe.

Plot aside, there’s also a sense of awe you can get from the stunning visuals that star trail has to offer that wasn’t there in the past honkai games.

The vast expanse of outer space and the greater universe beyond are easily seen through star trailwhere the titular Astral Express cruises serenely into a beautiful setting of a planet floating in a sea of ​​stars.

Do not misunderstand me, 3rd Honkai ImpactThe ‘captain on the bridge’ splash screen will forever remain iconic. But I can’t deny it Star Trail’The s splash screen quickly grew on me.

HoYverse’s signature anime style is also a welcome sight in star trail that makes it look familiar and not too strange to honkai or Genshin Impact players like me who were interested in the game.

I was also happy to see family 3rd Honkai Impact characters incorporated into the game.

although they they are not really my beloved Valkyries, but another version of them in this universe, it was bittersweet to see Himeko again.

Seele and Bronya were also present and with different characterizations, while 3rd Honkai Impact NPCs like Sushang and Welt Yang are also part of the list of playable characters we could choose from.

The environment is also amazing.

Concept art for Belobog, one of the first locations players will encounter in Honkai: Star Rail.  (Photo: HoYoverse)

Concept art for Belobog, one of the first locations players will encounter in Honkai: Star Rail. (Photo: HoYoverse)

The first city I encountered in the game called ‘Belobog’ is a visual spectacle.

It is like Genshin Impact‘s Mondstadt if Barbatos were like Rex Lapis. The cobblestone steps and sweeping European-inspired architecture are reminiscent of the city of liberty, but larger and more technologically advanced.

You might even see a tram go by on the street (and if you’re wondering, no, they can’t run you over).

Although the maps are not as explorable as in Genshin Impactinteracting with objects can yield comical interactions between your characters, or even rescue some hidden treasure at the bottom of a garbage can.

You can also get materials through breakable crates and treasure chests – with some chests locked behind puzzles that aren’t hard to do.

But what was worth it for me were the breathtaking designs of the enemies I faced during the time I was able to play the beta.

The aliens from the Antimatter Legion (where enemies come from) were reminiscent of the angels you would have seen in the cult-classic anime Neon Genesis Evangelion – which served as the inspiration for 3rd Honkai Impact — or even the shadows of Atlus’ persona Series.

But this fits perfectly with the type of game Honkai: Star Rail namely, the literal otherworldly and uncomfortably unnatural design gives the game its signature sci-fi.

Another aspect of the game that deserves a lot of praise is the final animations of the characters.

As the turn-based mechanics mean that in-game battles are systematic and personally a little restrictive (a far cry from the hands-on gameplay we’ve become accustomed to 3rd Honkai Impact and Genshin Impact), it’s safe to assume the developers more than made up for this with the breathtaking ult animations.

and on the contrary 3rd Honkai Impact and Genshin Impacteach character in star trail starts having an ult animation, up until the main character. Aether and Lumine must be full of jealousy.

Honkai: The ultimate Star Rail animations are simply breathtaking.  Himeko's, for example, takes her tea elegantly while bombarding her enemies with an orbital cannon.  (Photo: HoYoverse)

Honkai: The ultimate Star Rail animations are simply breathtaking. Himeko’s, for example, takes her tea elegantly while bombarding her enemies with an orbital cannon. (Photo: HoYoverse)

and speaking of star trail‘s turn-based mechanics is not too difficult to understand.

The mechanics are similar to other games that employ it, and honestly it would be a bit bland if there weren’t any ult animations.

Think of it this way, the mechanics are the cake, and the final animations are the intricately detailed icing decoration on top.

In general, star trail‘s second closed beta was great.

HoYoverse never disappoints when it comes to the rich story construction and amazing design for their games, and the music was pure ear candy too.

I’m definitely playing Honkai: Star Rail once it’s officially released (although HoYverse has yet to announce a release date for it) and will recommend it to fans of the honkai series or Genshin Impactand even for players looking for a new turn-based RPG experience.

Yan Ku is a full-time dog dad, part-time (gacha) gamer, and part-time writer.

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