由试验性游戏设计师 Mason Lindroth 和他那独特的美术风格所缔造出的《实质（Hylics）》可谓是 RPG 游戏界的一朵奇葩。就像使用了手绘动画的《茶杯头（Cuphead）》一样，使《实质》脱颖而出的正是它的黏土动画风格。能体现这一点的既可以是仿佛发烧做梦时才会出现的那种，相当莫名其妙、几乎不存在逻辑的敌人，也可以是其标志性的主角团。系列两作游戏分别由 RPG Maker（第一部）和 Unity（第二部）打造，并且两作都有提供一个所谓的“JRPG”范式的尝鲜版。
The Hylics series is an oddity in the world of CRPGs, driven by experimental game designer Mason Lindroth and his unique art style. Like Cuphead uses a specific style of painstakingly hand-drawn animations, Hylics stands out by being made from claymation designs. These can range from the completely baffling, almost confusing enemies which look like a fever dream, to the fairly iconic team of protagonists. Designed in RPG Maker (for the first) and Unity (for the second), both games offer up a bite-sized version of the so-called “JRPG” formula.
游戏初代给人的感觉更多是难以理解，因为大部分 NPC 对话都是由程序自动生成的，基本上没有任何的意义，而且经常会把玩家的注意力分散到奇怪的地方。这一点也延续到了游戏中的某些系统中，例如“墨西哥卷饼”（burrito）这个道具存在着“冷冻”和“温热”两种状态，冷冻的墨西哥卷饼可以被投掷并给敌人造成伤害，而将其加热过后则会获得一个回血道具。尽管游戏构建了一个复杂且神秘的世界，但游戏的实际表现却非常简单，并且旨在推动情节发展的对话皆有效地解释了玩家需要做些什么。
《实质 2（Hylics 2，2020）》是一部体量更大且质量更加优秀的续作。本作的特点是采用了全 3D 化的游戏场景，以一种有趣且在视觉上吸引人的方式呈现着自身。这一次角色变得更加清晰，前作的技术缺陷得到了修正，游戏的玩法变得更多样化，音效也更加出色。但本作仍会给人一种是制作人一时兴起制作出的感觉，但玩家们真的吃这一套。与前作一样，它也是一款轻松却又能带些思考，战斗充满挑战的同时配乐质量奇高的 RPG 游戏。只需要放松心态，享受游戏中的气氛，重复深呼吸就好了。
You will start out on a quest alone, explore on overworld maps on foot, get into turn-based battles, use items and equip weapons and armor, eventually get an airship to reach new lands and eventually have a world-defining battle. You'll be doing this for about three hours in the first game, and around five to seven hours in the second.
The first title is by far the more confusing, as most of the NPC dialogue was generated procedurally and mostly means nothing whatsoever, leaving strange red herrings for the player to follow. This extends to some of the game's systems, such as the “burrito” item having two states, frozen and warm – you throw frozen burritos at enemies for damage, and warm them up for a simple healing potion analog. Despite the byzantine worldbuilding the actual game is very simple, and dialogue meant to move the plot along manages to do an excellent job in explaining what you need to do.
Progression is also unique, when you die you get the chance to turn in “meat” gained from killing enemies, which increases your “flesh” (hit points). Dying is such a normal and expected part of the game that it never felt too difficult, functioning more as a chance to level up. Hylics is very meditative in this way, and isn't very interested in being very challenging.
Hylics 2 (2020) manages to make a sequel that is both bigger and better. The game features fully 3D environments, presenting itself in interesting and visually appealing ways. Characters are far more lucid this time around, technical shortcoming were fixed, there's more gameplay variety and the audio is far better. It still manages to feel as a one man's jam session, but it works. Like Hylics, it does an excellent job being a relaxing and meditative RPG, with decently challenging combat and some quality tunes. Just relax and enjoy the atmosphere. Breathe in. Breathe out.