3..2..1..Grenades! - Indie Game Reviews 2017

Genre: Action / FPS
Game Page: Game On Steam
Should You Buy It: No

About The Game

3..2..1.. Grenades! Is the game where you get to throw grenades like snowballs. Run around, pick the right trajectory and fight 3 other people in tons of different maps and gamemodes.

First, the good sides:

Lots of contents, maps, gamemodes – the creator of the game was very creative when he planned those things. Tiny mode, where characters are much smaller, paint the walls, throw the pug into basked, throwing the grenades to hit the targets faster than your opponents, etc. This really shows the dedication to creating new stuff.

The quest mode is done pretty well. How can deathmatch game implement it? The developer put the doors, locked by special “golden grenades.” Each door hides the passage to a room with new deathmatch mode. You get golden grenades by beating deathmatch challenges and gain golden grenades from that. That way you gradually get introduced to game modes while playing against bots.

The explosions are done well. In the game which is focused on throwing grenades, this is important. The slight screenshake, the explosion particle that turns into smoke – all of this really gives a good feel after blowing stuff up.

The Bad

Since there is no online multiplayer, you’ll be forced to play against bots most of the game. The bots are not terrible, but most of the time you can just corner them and spam left click and this will work. Because of that, the game gets boring fast, despite the abundance of game modes.

Also, one of the big problems with the game is the Menu UI: Why can I pick the blank profile (and then not start anything with it)? Then, when you pick a good one, you can’t actually start the game by clicking on buttons. You have to press enter after clicking on it. Video proof: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6t_kKjLZvA&feature=youtu.be . Also, if you are playing on keyboard and using WASD + Mouse, you’ll have to press Enter a lot for cutscene / intro skipping. This is not very convenient (your hands are on WASD and Mouse, right? So you have to take one off to press the Return key. It would be much better to allow pressing space / lmb to skip the cutscenes).

The graphics are meh. I understand that the game aims towards the retro feel, but the art style did not cut it for me. The weapons are OK, but I did not like the character models / textures.

Summary

Overall, I think the developer of the game just lacked experience. It’s his first game on Steam, it has some good points and was clearly done with care, but the lack of experience just brings it down. The clumsy UI brings down the enjoyment and the lack of online multiplayer quickly makes the games against bots pretty boring. I’m definitely looking forward to more games from Banyango, but I can’t recommend this one. It might be fun with local co-op, but for those of you who don’t get with friends often – I can’t recommend the game.

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Feature Image taken from the game store page, here

Crawl - Indie Game Reviews 2017 Steam Screenshot

Genre: Dungeon-Crawler / Local Multiplayer
Game Page: Game On Steam
Should You Buy It: Yes

Crawl is a peculiar game. It recently left early access, entering the fully released stage. The game’s idea is really original: four players (either bots or humans) are playing at the same time. One of them gets the role of dungeon explorer, going through the dungeon. Other take the roles of ghosts, who can spawn monsters or possess the traps across the rooms. If someone manages to kill the dungeon explorer, he takes his role, while recently deceased player becomes a ghost. The player who manages to get level 10 and kill the dungeon boss wins.

The Good

  • Really innovative and fun gameplay: there’s also no downtime for anyone, because all players influence the game in a way. It’s like telling a story from two different points of view
  • Lots of content and variety: different bosses, monsters, weapons and items. As you play more games, you get more unlocks, diversifying the randomized gameplay even further
  • AI is really good
  • The game has its own style: the pixel art is well aligned and fits the theme well

The Bad

  • A bit of a snowballing tend to happen. If one player levels up while playing explorer, other players (ghosts) are getting stronger monsters. Technically, that tends to even out the disadvantages (weaker players have stronger monsters -> statistically they tend to kill explorer more and take its role) as the game progresses. But if weaker player gets the role of explorer – he still has to fight the strong monsters of at least two other ghosts which often won’t be in his favor. During the midgame this gap is felt the most, but then it evens out if the game drags on a bit. That’s really the only drawback I can name.
  • No online multiplayer: the game could really benefit from it.
  • Also, minor thing, but I could not switch active display on my machine (could not move the game to second screen). The option to do this is there, but it did not work if I changed it.

Summary

The game is good in singleplayer, because AI can use the surroundings well and both control and combat the monsters skillfully. However, Crawl shines brightest when played with friends: the hot-cold relationship that turns upside down when someone takes control of the explorer (and the old foe, in turn, becomes somewhat your friend) makes up for a lot of funny and exciting moments. The content unlocks also makes it really replayable. Overall, it’s a solid game with original premise and I highly recommend it.

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Feature Image taken from the Crawl store page, here