Thursday, 9 May 2019

Asylum Reviews: Blazing Beaks [Switch].

Life is changed drastically when the world of beaks is invaded by a variety of monsters. In Blazing Beaks - a new twin-stick rogue-lite from developers Applava, you must choose from the strongest heroes available, who have been selected to go up against the monsters.

Eight characters, all of which are birds in some way, shape or form, are available to pick between with varying weapons and abilities being made available. There's a duck, a platypus, a parrot, a penguin and more, each with their own starting weapon and individual stats. In Tournament Mode, all characters begin with the same standard settings and weapons, to allow for fairness when going up against your friends.

Tournament Mode allows you to play with up to three friends in a local multiplayer tournament, going head to head with them to see who emerges victorious. It's a fun addition to the game, and something I wish more rogue-lites would incorporate to allow you a break from run after run.

Custom characters can be designed and made available for the community to use, which is a nice inclusion as it gives you the freedom to design a character exactly as you like, or download someone else's custom build if you're looking for something new to try out.

Randomised levels, with enemy placement and loot drops being fresh each time helps to avoid some of the repetitiveness that can plague these kinds of game. As well as weapon/loot drops, you'll find items such as Artifacts which prey on your greed, doing more to be a hindrance to your run, but this can spur you on further and makes you take a little second to hesitate about any items you choose to take. One thing I found interesting was that as you progress through levels, there's no option for backtracking, with previously accessed rooms being closed up after exit, meaning that you might have three doors to choose from in one room, and then only one in the next room you progress to, but you could have potentially missed some good items in either of the two other room strands.

Game modes vary from the standard Story mode when in Tournament Mode, with available play styles ranging from Deathwatch, a free for all mode where it's everyone for themselves, to One Gun mode where everyone uses the same randomly selected weapon each round.

Art style is cute and plays well on the retro theme. Characters contrast well against the background so you rarely struggle to pinpoint yourself in a room, even when there's a lot going on. Bosses are well designed and interesting, as are each of the player characters you can choose from.

Overall, we really enjoyed Blazing Beaks, but felt that it lacked a bit of the pull that other similar games have that has had us coming back to them for months on end. 

In the end, we decided to give Blazing Beaks the Collecting Asylum rating of 7.5/10.

Have you played Blazing Beaks yet? What did you think of it?
Let us know in the comments below!

- V x

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