Saturday, March 7, 2009
Video Game Review: Castle Crashers
This is another video game review I wrote a while back.
Remember the good ol' days when you would travel over to a friends house with controller in hand, and settle down to a couple of hours of hack n' slash via Gauntlet? Castle Crashers revives this old action game genre and breathes (much needed) new life into it.
Developed by The Bohemoth, and published on Xbox Live Arcade and WiiWare, Castle Crashers is light on story but heavy on action and gameplay. The story starts as an evil wizard steals a large diamond (whose importance is unknown even at the end of the game) from the King, and your job is to get it back (as well as saving and making out with 4 princesses who were kidnapped). The four characters that are immediately available is 4 differently colored knights, but the more you play, the more characters you can unlock and Castle Crashers has a whole slew of playable characters. The game has a light-hearted attitude and humor about it that are sure to keep you smiling throughout the game. The actions are fluid and the gameplay is quick.
However, I found that the taking potions (to replenish my health) was touchy sometimes, and I would sometimes die even though I knew I had hit the button to get full life again. The player can level up four different abilities: strength (which increases your attack), magic, defense (which increases your health) and agility (which increases your speed as well as the speed of your ranged attacks). However, the magic ability is the real hero here, and leveling it up early will insure your quick progression through the game. Another nice thing is the vast arsenal of weapons that you can collect throughout the game. As of this writing, I had collected around 40 different weapons, with still more that I had to find. Also, the player can collect different animals that have their own unique abilities. Some will amplify your attack abilities, some will help you find weapons, and others will attack enemies themselves. Each animal is unique and there are around 20 different animals.
The art style is unique and playful and only serves to add to the humor of the game. The music as well is very good and puts the player right into the action. The story is the only main downer here, offering only a new look and a cliched take on the fantasy genre. But at the same time, it is more than enough to expect from an Xbox Live Arcade title. If you want tight and fluid gameplay, with unique characters and light-hearted humor and attitude, Castle Crashers is the game for you. Download it, invite three friends over, and get down to some nice, reminiscent hack n' slash.
Hands Down: 8.75/10