It takes a lot to make an impact as an indie game releasing against Hyper Light Drifter this week, but fortunately for Enter the Gungeon it packs enough explosives to make an impact the size of a canyon.
Enter the Gungeon is a roguelike game that sees you take control of a group of colorful characters who pack enough weapons to declare themselves a sovereign nation. Like many roguelike games, the objective is to make your way through a randomly generated series of rooms, use random weapons and defeat random enemies. If you die, your game is done.
Unlike many roguelike games, this one is much more action-based meaning that your success isn’t as dependent on luck. Don’t take that to mean that Gungeon will be easy, however, as it is modeled after the bullet hell genre. What that means is that every enemy will greet you with a wave of bullets that fill the screen. The chaos in your average session is simply tremendous, and the best stuff is appropriately reserved for the game’s boss battles.
Helping you along the way is the aforementioned arsenal of creative weapons, as well as a useful dodge-roll ability and some special items. You’ll also be able to flip over tables for cover, and take advantage of rare merchants who will be all too happy to trade their wares for the bullet currency you pick up along the way.
Unfortunately, much of the game’s action is hindered by the targeting system. The aiming in Gungeon is far too loose, making it difficult to target your enemies and properly engage in the action. Where this really becomes a problem is in the game’s randomized weapon system. Machine guns and explosives are your best bet to combat the lack of precision aiming, while anything else presents more of a risk to you than to your enemies.
Speaking of your enemies, their design is something of a letdown as well. Most either resemble some kind of ammunition or a generic dark fantasy creature. There’s little variety to be found among them, which is disheartening considering that the music and effects of the game set the presentation bar pretty high. It should be noted that the boss designs are exceptional, however.
As it stands, it’s hard to recommend Enter the Gungeon over the kings of the genre such as Nuclear Throne and The Binding of Issac. Should a patch come along to fix the wonky aiming, then it will be a lot easier to appreciate the beautiful chaos this game creates. For now, this one should be cautiously downloaded by genre fans looking for a new fix.
- Frantic Action
- Good Sense of Humor
- Can be fairly addictive
- Loose aiming system greatly hinders combat
- Bland enemy design