AFK Journey (hands-on)

AFK Journey (hands-on)

Your next gacha obsession is this isometric fantasy away from the keyboard

AFK Journey aims to bring the signature hands-off gameplay of the AFK IP to the gacha RPG genre, and after hands-on with the game we can see why this is going to suck up a lot of our time, free or not.

In its most basic form, it’s an isometric auto-battling RPG in which we move characters around a world with our party in tow. We can explore, battle, and battle while we explore. The battles sort of run themselves. When a fight starts, our party starts doing its thing, and based on how we position the troops on our side of the field we can take advantage of the abilities and ranges of our party’s skills. Think of it like putting an archer in the back or a bruiser in the front. Environmental positioning and interactive objects can change our strategy, so if we run into an exploding barrel or a tall wall, we’ll have to arrange our team accordingly.

We can hit a button and let the game fully run the experience, or we can try our hand at conjuring some spells or using abilities — but the game mostly plays the attacks by itself.

Like other games in the the “away from keyboard RPG” genre, the characters persist in the world without us, so they can harvest resources, improve their capabilities, etc etc while we’re away, and we can collect it all and be updated on their tasks the next time we log in.

But this is a gacha game, and its sole purpose really is to entice us to collect characters and build our teams. It utilizes mostly straightforward gacha mechanics (we need certain amounts of resources to draw a new character) and the game will have several series and characters and banners we can pick up over time (there are already 2 planned content drops bringing full new modes) so there should be reason to keep coming back. Great character designs and full voice-acting round out the game, which may be enough to keep a carrot on a string in front of us to keep coming back.

AFK Journey, from developer/publisher Farlight, is available now on mobile and PC.

~~ AFK Journey won a SideQuesting Team Choice Award at PAX East 2024 ~~