Blast Brawl 2: Bloody Boogaloo PC Review
Indie games in the 21st century have seen their fair share of successes & losses, and with the triple A games now starting to feel stale, indie games really have taken off. Games such as Minecraft, Super Meat Boy, Fez, Goat Simulator, Counter Strike and many, many more are all becoming household names in the gaming industry. It’s clear from the audience that indie games will forever continue to grow and perhaps one day, triple A games will finally wake up and take note of this movement and maybe learn a thing or two from this quickly growing trend.
So then where does Blast Brawl 2: Bloody Boogaloo fit in to all of this? Most importantly, is the game worth buying for yourself or friends? Read on to find out…
Blast Brawl 2 wastes no time starting up by showing two characters by a car casually talking about how they deserve a break from saving the world, indicating they are both good guys, when suddenly, the screen goes black and white and our heroes get thrown into the newly opened portal. After this, text comes up explaining what the characters are now faced with doing, fighting non-stop to the death for the rest of time! With the premise out of the way, time to fight!
Now Blast Brawl 2 throws you into a first time setup if it… well, is your first time playing! You can change the graphics, sound and learn how to play but, ultimately I chose to skip this, which was a mistake. (You’ll see later on). I find in the menu there’s no story mode, only multiplayer modes & one single player mode, wave mode, basically a survival game where you last against hordes of enemies until you lose all of your lives. This was disappointing to me as a story mode would have explained the backstory mode and given a lot more value for money for this game. Anyway we get to pick two characters, the male character who is a brawler & the female character untitled warrior. They both have different play styles, mechanics and weapons to use. The warrior has a huge sword and magic special powers, where as the brawler has to make do with his fists and find guns but he is the quicker of the two. There are more characters but you have to unlock them by getting money you win as you defeat enemies in the game.
Once you pick your character and their colours, you get to pick a handful of maps which each have their own theme song, all of which are simply kick ass to listen too! Very well composed and the driving beats really get you into the mood to kill some enemies! Once we start though, the game is very tough! In fact, death is way too easy as you only can take one hit at first and your foes are all quicker and sharper than you. To attack, you hit the RT button if you are using a controller and it takes a moment for the animation to do its thing. It’s detailed animation and it looks great, but you die too easily and you’ll get frustrated within seconds as you won’t be getting far into the waves. You can block hitting LT but the block is not continuous and it acts more like a deflection than an actual block so, time the block wrong and, you guessed it, you die.
If you use the RB button, you can hold it and charge your special attack for a devastating effect, but to get it to that state takes too long and you die long before you ever get to properly use it. If you fight enemies that are airborne, it can be very hard to hit them as they keep moving all over the place and striking you with ease. This makes it very tough for the player to get into the game, the difficulty is just too high from the start, even myself, a very experienced gamer, had problems getting into this one. When I kept trying to play, the game did have nice touches such as infinite wall hoping just like in the old Mega Man X games & being able to dash/dodge my opponents which came in handy, but you still have to time it right or risk a quick death. This game requires a lot of practice should you buy it.
Finally lets mention the graphics and controls. The graphics have that 8bit feel and retro style and to be fair, it looks very, very well drawn. The backgrounds pop with rich colour and are full of life from background movements to mortars raining down on your head to not being able to see in one stage properly and having a creepy vibe to it. The game also has lots of nice graphical touches and you cannot help to keep admiring the excellent art design for this game. The characters equally look retro but to make up for their more plain look, the animations on them are top notch and you feel as if you are controlling humans who really feel powerful, in a sense anyway. The art team and designers need medals for their work or some kind of reward for this I tell you.
Finally the controls. It takes a while to get used to attacking, defending and dodge as all of them have to be timed correctly, otherwise you just end up being killed quickly. This is the only real gripe I had with the game because, everything else from jumping, wall climbing and casual running was actually very responsive and a joy to use. These moments were when I felt in control of what I was doing within the game. For me, sadly, the attacking controls let me down and makes playing the game a chore at first. After practice it gets better and you start to have fun, but this game is more for experienced players rather than casuals. Oh, and without much of a single player mode to go on, this game will get stale fairly fast unless the developers add this in later on, which would be great if they did. Ultimately Blast Brawl 2 is a decent idea but there’s much room for improvement, mainly controls and more single player modes to choose from. If the developers do these changes, we might have another indie game winner on our hands.
Graphics – 8
Nicely designed artwork, backgrounds, effects and character animations is this games best strength and looks great with that 80s retro feel of the best kind.
Gameplay – 5
The gameplay elements are all there but, the attacking controls suck out most of the fun & the game is punishing right from the start. Not great for casual players and not for those who like all out attacking.
Sound – 8
The music is kick ass, top notch and the sound design in general is just all round solid and well made. The soundtrack is defiantly worth listening to, even if you don’t own the game.
Value – 4
No true story mode, only 1 single player mode and too multiplayer focused. Also locking out most of the characters, then adding in with the games difficult nature & controls means gameplay gets stale fairly quickly.
Final Verdict 6/10
Not a bad game & it has great elements. The lack of true single player mode, poor attacking controls & very difficult gameplay really hurts the game but, the issues can be fixed via patching. Until then, I can only recommend this game if you either have friends to play with or if you are patient enough to overcome the flawed controls.