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Illusionary Isolation
Developer(s) Void Admins
Platform(s) BlackHold, Nintendo Switch
Genre(s) Platformer, RPG
Available Input Joycons, Darkpads

Illusionary Isolation or Minus the Love outside of the EU is a game combining the platformer and RPG genres together, it was developed by Void Admins and released in May worldwide. it soon released for the BlackHold and Nintendo Switch. The game involves a character called Minus who is suffering from anxiety due to being alone all the time. Soon, she discovers that she can trigger her inner self to find more happiness. However, when she discovers her younger sister, Plus, she sees dark sparks coming out of her chest. It is said to be a sign of negativity, the only way to prevent these dark sparks by coming out is by giving Plus some company for a while. Minus continues to make friends and do this method along her adventure. 

The game revolves around getting as much out of it as you can, constantly giving you hints that something else is near. It wants you to interact with all the areas of the game as possible. 

Story

The game begins in the far north of Despair Forest, where there seems to be a purple shadow above. The screen moves up to get the view of a mysterious object in the sky. It shoots a large fireball towards the forest and fades out. Soon, we move to the south where Minus lives, a small shack in wooden glory. 

Gameplay

Before having a go at Story Mode, you are able to select a difficulty, the one you select can make enemies stronger or weaker and can get relationship levels higher or lower. These difficulty are stored as normal, Easy, Normal, Hard, Insane and Lunatic. Easy is the easiest mode, there will be less enemies and less enconuters. Even if you encounter one, the enemy will just be weak. However, on the bad side, You can only level up your relationship level to 20. Less clothes can be found and the game cuts off short if you reach the end. Normal is for average gamers, there are more enemies to encounter and they are not one hit enemies, unlike Easy. A lot of clothing can be discovered and you can now get your relationship level to 99. The game does not cut short in this mode. Hard, Insane and Lunatic are just what they sound like. The only way to reset the difficulty is to delete one of the three save files.

When in the game, you are able to take control of Minus with your controller and progress the game. The game allows you to see as much as it can, since the main focus of this game is exploration. The controls of moving Minus around are like a 2D platformer, touching an enemy will trigger a RPG battle. However, using a weapon like a gun and shooting an enemy won't trigger one. If Minus (or another teammate) uses an attack on the enemy where the battle is supposed to trigger, the battle will begin and the player will get a bonus attack, almost like the Mario & Luigi series does. This is the same for enemies, if they detect you and touch the player, they will get the bonus attack instead.

The areas in this game are set out like Metroid games, the whole area is a bunch of rooms you need to get through until you reach the exit. However, there is also a hub area, which is said to be the main area for all these areas. The hub is a huge room, containing NPCs to meet, quests to complete, things to buy and even more. You can teleport back here using Minus's Hyperport. There are also save gems to find, which of course, save your progress.

Relationship levels are types of relationships you develop with the main characters of the game. You can increase them by doing quests for them or just giving them affection using the controller in various ways. Once you get to a certain level, something special might happen. You may be given a gift of affection or they'll join your party.

On the way, costumes can be collected and equipped, all of these costumes have their own unique ability and skill. For example, a Red Maiden Costume can give you the skill "Homing Orbs," this attack makes the selected character fires five homing orbs onto an enemy and also hits nearby enemies too. Its skill is to hover above the ground for a few seconds. (15-20) So the ability is for battles, skills are for the overworld. The weapon equivalent to this are the weapons, they can also be used in the overworld and battle. Using it in the overworld can have some effects. For example, the sword is a short ranged weapon, so you are able to swing it forwards, backwards and even in the air. However, if we took a gun, you can aim it in any of the eight directions and shoot. But its noise will warn enemies too.

The character's health are the same in battle and the overworld, if you get hit by a hazard in the overworld, it will transfer to the battle. And if you get hit in battle, it transfers into the overworld and vice versa. If you lose all the health, you lose a life. Losing all of these lives will result in a game over. Health can also be upgraded by getting a specific costume, collecting Happy Hearts or just upgrading it in the stats menu. 

Battles

The battles in this game are a lot like the ones obviously seen in RPGs, there are four options to pick, when you defeat all enemies, you clear the battle. However, if you don't have a specfic costume, you cannot flee. Each options given to you are to help you during the battle, the four options are:

Fight - Beat up the foes using your weapon, this is here for the basics but it is also there incase you can't use your special skills anymore. You may even have the option to use two attacks, but this is only with very rare weapons. 

Special - Special attacks are attacks that are an alternitive from the normal fight option. This can be used for many things, such for dealing huge damage, getting rid of horrible states and healing. There's a lot more to come from this option too, you can even use some in the overworld to find secrets. 

Items - There are a lot of items to be found in this game. Most are to do with healing, but some are there to deal some extra damage, they can buff up your stats for that one battle or they can give you a helpful state.

Friend - Instead of battling, should we be friends? Communicating with the enemy may make them more friendly, they may even join your side as a helper. Helpers randomly appear in battle to help you with the battle, either by damaging the enemy, helping you and more. You can have three to help you but they only appear once.

States

There are also states that can be useful or helpless. These can be gotten through special attacks, items, helpers, costumes, etc. The useful states are called Helpies and the less greater ones are called Effects.

Helpies

ATK UP - Increases the ATK stat and SP ATK stat for an easy takedown.  They can last for 2-5 turns.

DEF UP - Increases the DEF stat and SP DEF stat if you are in a mishap. They can last for 2-4 turns.

Critical - If lucky, the character will be able to do a critical attack. This can be heard and seen if the Impact Hit sound plays and the damage text is red.

Pumped - Getting pumped means your attack will be used twice for 1-3 turns. Getting pumped up is really good! 

Action Skills

After attacking an enemy, you can perform Action Skills to get some helpies, items or just help. You do it by immediately pressing any of the main button after attacking. There is a meter on how well you are doing with action skills. It can increase if you do certain combos and press different button, but it can also decrease if you are pressing the same buttons. This can say something about your performance.

If the meter is full, the crowds cheers loudly and there is a 100% chance you can get assistance. This is very rare and can only be gotten on Hard difficulty and above.

If it is 3/4 full, the crowd cheers and there is a 75% chance to get some assistance. This is rare and can only be performed on normal mode and above.

If it is half full, some people will cheer and there's a 25% chance to get some assistance. This is regular, as this is the phase your meter starts with.

If it isn't full at all, there is no crowd, there is only a 2% chance of getting an item. This is for the unlucky people who can't fill the meter up properly. 

Teamwork Attacks

These attacks are very special attacks that can only be unlocked after getting to a certain relationship level with a certain character. They can be found in the Skills menu. This has Minus and her parent perform a special attack that has you perform attacks in a different way. For an example, let's take Minus's and Plus's Teamwork Attack, Bitter Venture. For this attack, the duo brings in a huge tank with a giant X on it. You must press A when the target is on your enemy. After five attempts at hitting it, the two ram towards it and make the tank self destruct. This also drains all your Special Power (SPOW) so be careful when using this.

Modes

Story Mode

The story mode is the main mode of the game, where of course, the main story takes place. You play as the main character, Minus and stroll through all the areas to get rid of all the Silver Gunners that are overtaking Earth. You soon get to the mastermind and finally put a stop to the gunners. This is the RPG/Platforming part of the game. 

Checkmate Battles

For The Brawl

Master of Love

Characters

Character Description
N/A

Minus, The Happiness Hunter

Minus is the main playable character, she is not a very talkative person and gets very worried around a lot of people. When she speaks though, she has a deep voice and doesn't talk for very long, often making simple sentences. Her weapon of choice is a gun, mostly because she can shoot enemies from afar. She hates the noise though, but don't we all? After making a few friends, Minus gains a laid-back personality, always feeling calm and loves to relax. Her main theme consists of lofi hip hop.
N/A

Plus, The Young Adventurer

Plus is the younger sister of Minus and can be a part of your team after getting relationship levels to Level Five. She is a cheerful and adventurous person and loves to find new things. She can be very chatty sometimes, she could talk about her whole adventure and only take in a breath three times. Her weapon of choice is a sword, because it looks adventurous.
N/A

Artqua, Artist of the Seas

Artqua is the artist of the seas, she is able to join your team at a relationship level of five. She has a dazzing personality which makes her stand out, she also really cares about her fashion. She can draw things to life and even attack with her paintbrushes. The paint she lashes at enemies will always have a different effect.
N/A

Oatmika, God of Food

Oatmika is the god of food and becomes a part of your team after getting to relationship levels to Level eight. She is a fun-loving person and loves money. She is able to make food from her 'magical bowl,' which is healthy and never dries out. Her weapon of choice isn't really a weapon. She is a fighter and uses food to her advantage.

NPCs

Character Description
N/A

Dr. Harvey Crimson, Owner of Crimson Arts. Inc

Harvey is the creator of Crimson Arts who has finished created Project Zeta. She isa laid back person but also can go kind of hyper at some points. Harvey has also made many weapons, electronics and even gaming consoles. But now there's a problem, there's a chip inside of her elbow which doesn't allow her to work as much.
N/A

Molly, The Mysterious Young Mind

Molly is a mysterious girl able to be found in every area in the game. She is able to assist you by healing you or even giving you items and costumes. You can also talk to her to find out more of the game's lore. Even though she is young, it is unknown how she was able to get this info. Maybe through sight, maybe through stories. We will never know anyways, about the hole through her hand, the fact she was able to follow you everywhere and even how she sometimes hides and looks at you during cutscenes.
N/A

Roy Pursly, Dancing Maniac

Roy is a dancing man, constantly challenging people for a dance battle. You dance in a DDR fashion, where you have to land your hand on the control pad at the right time. This is an easy way to get money, as these challenges are very easy. Roy is obviously based of the royal Roy Purdy.
N/A

Hellcore, The Eternal Core

Hellcore is the main villain of Illusionary Isolation, he is the creator of the Silver Gunners and the ruler of the underworld. He has a visible heart that may be the core of the underworld, it is an orange-black eye. He has the ability to control fire and electricity with his floating hands and is able to create Silver Gunners at anytime. Being driven wild by boredom and stress, he became the total lunatic and started burning the world from the skies.
N/A

Jesting, Masked Maiden

Jesting is the maid of the underworld, she is a person full of boredom who is usually laid-back most of the time and slacks off. But when she doesn't slack off, she can be dangerous. She can create bursting balloons that contain fire, water or electricity. She is also able to paint your screen and shout from her megaphone to deafen people. She loves the overworld though.
N/A

Amybo, Specialist of Amibos

Amybo is a professional trained amibo collector. You can find her behind Oatmika's palace. Once visited, she will asked if you have any amibo. If you have one, she will gladly take it from you and begin to scan it for any costumes. Afterwards she gives it back and with a costume.

Areas

The areas are the main exploration part of the game, these are explored in a 2D platformer perspective. This game sprouts a bunch of areas to explore, all almost different from each other.

Area Description Costumes
Despair Forest The place where Minus lurks most of the time, a damp forest full of weird creatures. The sun does not shine here, however, there has been a outbreak of fire in the past few weeks. Minus must find the fireman who is doing this to her forest. The enemies here are weird hybrids and sometimes living plants and fruits can appear. Leafy Costume, Tornado Skirt, Fruity Shirt, Green Dino Costume, Flame Suit
Deepsea Dive The area where Plus is currently living in, the city of Aqu is full of water, shops and fun. The sun is setting down and people are about to leave the beach. However, a huge wave comes up and swallows Minus whole, who is this strange blue-clothed lady? The enemies here are sea based. Beach Clothing, Mermaid Costume, Samba Clothing, Froggy Costume, Stealth Shirt
Urban Coast Time to search for Plus, however, there has been a murder incident around and the roads have closed down. So Minus and her friend must find another way to get to Plus's house, but it's getting dark. They need to find a place to stay before night comes. Nocturnal creatures are the enemies here. Red Maiden Costume, Vest In Black, Business Suit, Sleepy Wear, Fly Suit
Digest Kingdom The Digest Kingdom is where the God of Food stays, she makes resources to sell to other cities and get money. The city of Aqu has been pretty low on food so the team need to beg the God for food. However, the food equals some money. A lot of work has to be done to pay for all of it. Apple Costume, Oatmeal Coat, The Sweater, Dollar Shirt, Ballet Set
Chilltime Heights Oh jeez, it's feeling really cold right now. But at least we finally know what we are looking for, a monolith. This holds the five keys to happiness, five secret objects must be carried towards there for the happiness to spread. Thanks to our new agent, we found a lost lab? Snow Suit, Froggo Clothing, Skeleton Mask
Crimson Labs Inc. The lost lab was not what was expected from our heroes. It's full of slimy, degraded monsters that haunt the floors. This place used to be the lab of the greatest scientist, where is she now? Maybe that Project Zeta is still being worked on. Lab Costume, Spacesuit, VR Headset, The Black Rabbit

Items

Name Description
Biscut Tea A cup of hot milk with biscuits in it. They are all melted to make the biscuits spread along the milk. Heals 100 HP.
Munchshroom Munchshrooms are healthy little shrooms. They are said to make bones more stable. Increases DEF.
Basic Chucket Chuckets are explosive triangular bombs that explode on impact. They can be used during battle to deal some damage incase you are in trouble.
Big Boy Chucket These are bigger Chuckets that deal a lot more damage on impact. These are rare to find.
Cool Chucket Ice cold chuckets, gives the freeze effect on all enemies, most of the time. This is also rare.
Chaos Dust Once thrown, it will cover the whole screen, killing all enemies instantly. This is very rare.
Raven Noodles Noodles with a side of raven. It's not even cut up. Heals depend on how much the teammate likes it.
Flamin' Leg A chicken leg that's still not cooled down. It's still on fire but it's harmless. When used in battle, these deal major damage to all enemies.

Costumes

Name Description Abilites
Leafy Costume These hunk of leaves may not be a costume but enemies won't spot you unless you move. Just don't move please. But the leaves can all come off if you use it for too long. In battle, this will give you an extra turn randomly. In the overworld, it will make enemies not detect you.
Tornado Skirt This looks like a normal skirt, but saying the secret word will turn you into a human cyclone! You can spin in any direction you like and as you please! In battle, this can give enemies the dazed effect. In the overworld, you are able to turn into a tornado that can spin in any direction.
Fruity Shirt A shirt made out of actual fruit, hmm, not such a good idea but it works. Heal yourself at anytime when in major danger. In battle or overworld, this heals you a bit and clears all effects.

Bestiary

This section is for all the enemies and bosses you encounter on your way. Some of these may be variations of another enemy or is a part of another enemy. These descriptions are said by Minus whenever she uses her Research Move. They are then saved into her beast log.

Name Description Appearances
Seedarian "That's a Seedarian. They are little small seed enemies that take a day to grow, but it's shame they die out after a week. Poor little seeds!" Despair Forest, Digest Kingdom
Ravowl "An ugly hybrid of an owl and raven, it's so disgusting! This thing always has you in its sight so it's attacks will almost never miss! Maybe try slowing it down?" Despair Forest, Urban Coast
PineApple "A pineapple mixed with an apple? Oh no, have we gone too far? If there's a pearpineapple, I'll have sleepless nights forever. Well, you can use the pineapple pieces when defeating it." Despair Forest, Digest Kingdom
Faish "That's a Faish, they always care about their looks and fashion. They say that there's a fashion god but only if you throw away something valuable to them." Deepsea Dive
Sharky "Sharkies are protectors of that Sharkira girl we were talking about but they look too plain to be her underlings. There's just a bow on the head. However, these things are hard biters!" Deepsea Dive
Tophat Snake "These snakes have some fashion, I've never seen these tophats before! They attack by biting you or hitting you with their tails. Still, where did they get the hats from?" Deepsea Dive
Wheeeel "These hyperactive wheels can pound you into dust. They'll drive all over you with their extra attacks and damage you badly. If you encounter three, you'll probably not survive. But hey, they can be tamed easily. Urban Coast
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