Heavy Bullets (PC) Review

By Chris Leebody 28.10.2014

Review for Heavy Bullets on PC

At this point, the roguelike game, with its permanent death mechanic, is a well-travelled road and many gamers will have their favourite types, be it platformer such as Rogue Legacy or the spectacular space adventure FTL: Faster Than Light and many things in between. No need for a fancy PC rig as these games are old fashioned fun and boast the kind of difficulty curve many old school gamers appreciate. The shooter version in the genre is less catered for compared to platform titles and it is the space into which steps Heavy Bullets, a game set inside a randomised malfunctioning security mainframe, where all sorts of strange creatures are trying to impede the protagonists progress in resetting it. There is one weapon, six bullets and no saving. Does Heavy Bullets from developer Terri Vellmann have more to offer than just a tough challenge? Read on...

One of the most striking things about Heavy Bullets upon first inspection is the immensely vivid colourful world that it is set in. It would have been easy to make some bland Tron-esque computer world with a never-ending abundance of pale blue LED lights everywhere, instead Heavy Bullets ditches the clichés in favour of splashing a drug-fevered mix of colour and a randomised world that resembles some futuristic jungle.

Inside this jungle are a number of 'nasties' ready to chip away at one of the few precious hearts/lives. At first, some of the creatures look like loveable children's characters, but they soon prove to be utterly terrifying and infuriating in equal measure. There is a decent amount of enemy variety within the game's eight levels, from the common "Imp" creature at the start, to robot security turrets, as well as a couple of boss battles. A prime example of the most annoying includes the worm-like creatures hiding like snipers in the grass, ready to pounce on the unnamed lead character.

The map designs equally play into the game's strengths…and also weaknesses. On the one hand there is a feeling of fear and tension when sneaking around every corner, looking for a well hidden enemy that will jump out and potentially send them back to the beginning of the game. On the other, with so much on the screen, it is a real challenge to see everything and can result in absurdly cheap deaths.

Screenshot for Heavy Bullets on PC

Thankfully, although it is likely that much time will be spent viewing the start of the game, Heavy Bullets throws some bones the player's way to make the experience more pleasant by allowing coins to be banked for the next playthrough from vending machines that also sell extra bullets and items, such as bombs or knives, which are useful for the adventure.

The actual gunplay feels great and it is incredibly smooth and fun as an FPS title. Aiming is accurate and it manages to balance the need for a fun arcade type of FPS against one in which the fear is that aiming feels loose and irritating. The true point of this being important is so the precious six bullets are never wasted. Enemies die in one hit, bar the boss battles, and spraying bullets is not a good idea considering they need to be picked up again.

The music and sound in Heavy Bullets fits the setting perfectly. The soundtrack is especially good at creating an exciting backdrop to the madness, as well as complementing the computer world with pounding jungle beats mixed in with high pitched tones and old-school beeps; it is a real eclectic mix.

Screenshot for Heavy Bullets on PC

Cubed3 Rating

9/10
Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

Rated 9 out of 10

At the price Heavy Bullets retails for, it is hard to argue with the high score for the amount of fun found in the game. There is undoubtedly a challenge and with that comes frustration, but also what comes with it is a sense of achievement when beating it. Recently in the indie game scene there has been a tendency to fall back on punishing difficulty as the sole point of any game and forget the gameplay. Heavy Bullets does not fall into this trap. Aiming and the shooting experience is tight and enjoyable, there are mechanics built into the background that alleviate the stress. The sound and graphics can't be faulted for the genre it is in, either. All in all, Heavy Bullets comes highly recommended!

Developer

Terri Vellmann

Publisher

Devolver Digital

Genre

First Person Shooter

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

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