After launching on Xbox platforms (as well as Game Pass) back in 2021, Echo Generation has now made its way to PC and the Nintendo Switch in the form of the enhanced Midnight Edition, bringing with it snazzier visuals and some quality-of-life refinements to make for a more enjoyable experience.

Check out some screenshots down below:

Echo Generation: Midnight Edition puts players in the role of a teenager (who you get to choose from a small selection of pre-designed characters) who lives in Maple Town with their mother and little sister. Their father has been missing for a while whilst working for an enigmatic organisation known as the FST, but when a strange ship crashes down to a nearby field and brings with it a clue to his whereabouts, the kids decide to investigate further. However, with Maple Town and its surrounding area packed with peculiar and paranormal secrets, their journey brings with it plenty of bizarre twists and turns.

If you’re a fan of the likes of Stranger Things, The Goonies, E.T., and so forth, you’ll love the storytelling of Echo Generation: Midnight Edition. It’s got that whole ‘the kids are going to save the day’ vibe throughout, whilst the mysterious yet unbelievable situations they find themselves in bring with them plenty of charm to fit the more whimsical vibe that the game is going for. There’s plenty of variety to be found in the things you encounter, the places you go, and the people you meet, with everything coming together to make for a peculiar yet delightful experience.

The only downside? It doesn’t always flesh out its storytelling. There are plenty of characters you meet that feel like they could have played a bigger role in the tale but only get a fleeting moment in the spotlight, whilst some of the mysteries you uncover could’ve been expanded upon with more depth. There isn’t even an intro sequence, which isn’t ALWAYS necessary, but is something that I think would’ve given players a nice introduction to the strange occurrences taking place within Maple Town. They’re small complaints in the grand scheme of things, but they could make the game’s world feel a little less immersive.

“If you’re a fan of the likes of Stranger Things, The Goonies, E.T., and so forth, you’ll love the storytelling of Echo Generation: Midnight Edition.”

When it comes to the gameplay, Echo Generation: Midnight Edition feels like a cross of a classic adventure title and a turn-based RPG. As players explore the world, they’ll uncover an array of items that might not always seem conventionally useful but will be required by someone you encounter or used to get through an obstacle in your path. Most characters will tell you what they’re looking for, but there’ll also be times when you have to think outside of the box in order to progress. I don’t want to admit how long it took me to realise a big book could block the path of a toy train, whilst my hunt for the appropriate paint for someone to complete a painting made me realise that some shops in the game sell more than healing items…

It all adds a fun little twist to the RPG gameplay, with these puzzling elements proving rewarding across the entirety of the game. It’s always satisfying when you come across the items that you’ve been hunting for in order to complete a quest, whilst it’ll also encourage players to scavenge through the variety of locales in the game for items or folk to help out. None of the puzzles are as tricky or cryptic as those seen in classic point-and-click adventures, but don’t be surprised to find yourself scratching your head on a few occasions as you figure out what exactly you need in order to progress.

The combat of Echo Generation: Midnight Edition takes a turn-based approach with a focus on managing your HP to stay alive and SP to perform abilities, though it adds a creative twist to performing actions that’ll keep players on their toes. Standard attacks become more powerful with a well-timed button press for example, whilst some attacks require you to complete small QTEs, mash buttons quickly, or even line up targets for maximum efficiency. You’ll also time button presses to defend yourself from incoming attacks or run around the battle area to avoid them, which can massively nullify their damage and be the difference between life and death in some scenarios. If you’ve played the Paper Mario games, you’ll be familiar with the concept, though Echo Generation: Midnight Edition does make each action simple enough that players will be able to pull them off with minimal fuss. You will have to keep a close eye on the screen during attacks though, because one mistimed button press can be the difference between success and failure.

Check out some screenshots down below:

That being said, Echo Generation: Midnight Edition isn’t an especially tough game, with most battles pretty manageable. You’ll unlock plenty of new skills throughout your adventure to ensure you’ve got a good repertoire of attacks to deal with different situations, whilst there isn’t a need to grind for experience points thanks to the balance of combat scenarios. Don’t get me wrong, you’ll have to plan out each encounter strategically and use items to keep yourself healthy, but there’ll rarely be a situation where you’ll find yourself in real trouble – especially if you time your button presses effectively when attacking and defending. They offer enough of a challenge to be strategic and fun, but I didn’t face a single loss during my eight-hour playthrough of the game.

I can’t end this review without mentioning the visuals of Echo Generation: Midnight Edition, which are gorgeous throughout. The game utilises a voxel-based aesthetic, but it offers plenty of detail and is complemented by some gorgeous visual effects that really help bring the world to life. The environment design is top notch too, whilst the creatures you face off against look fantastic thanks to their imaginative designs. A lot of games utilise voxel-based visuals these days, but I think Echo Generation: Midnight Edition is the best that they have ever looked.

It’s also worth pointing out that this Midnight Edition has brought other quality of life enhancements to improve upon the original game, such as tracking quests, fast travel, and some changes to combat. I didn’t play the game in the original form so I couldn’t appreciate things like that quite as much, but if you’re a returning player who didn’t get the benefits the first time around, it might make Echo Generation a more enjoyable experience for you.

Echo Generation: Midnight Edition Review

Echo Generation: Midnight Edition blends together classic adventure gameplay with turn-based combat to make for a fun and kooky adventure. The game is simply oozing with charm thanks to its delightfully weird storytelling and gorgeous voxel-based world, whilst the puzzling antics and satisfying combat ensure players will be kept glued to the screen during its roughly eight-hour runtime.

It can be guilty of not offering a lot of depth in its narrative and its not an especially difficult game, but they’re small issues in what is otherwise a charming and memorable adventure. If you missed out on Echo Generation during its initial release, this new and improved Midnight Edition marks the perfect time to check it out.

Developer: Cococucumber
Publisher: Cococucumber
Platform(s): PC (Reviewed), Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch