The Deadly Tower of Monsters
This is a game full of little innovative ideas in both its gameplay and approach to storytelling. They mostly keep its more pedestrian elements afloat, which are generally well implemented anyway. It lulls you into thinking it’s less original than it actually is, before smashing you with a surprising number of inventive twists. Quite an old-school approach throughout is lent a nostalgic feel rather than a stale one.
Quickly building on elements we’ve seen numerous times before, the bare bones of this game are fundamentals we are all well aware of. Run, jump and shoot are all proven constants that only feel shallow when done without inspiration. Inspiration permeates every corner of The Deadly Tower of Monsters making its beat-em-up beginnings mere support beams for playful evolution. Actually playing the game can occasionally be somewhat awkward however, but not too much so and it simply takes a little getting used to. There are some design flaws in the environments that can leave you having to reload checkpoints where you shouldn’t have to. This is a big problem, but the clearly inventive intentions of the creators make it quite easy to forgive.
While there’s nothing too mind-blowing here, as is often the case with more cartoony titles, there are some incredibly interesting quirks that are utterly unique to the game. Everything looks nice and smooth for a start, enhancing the experience and complimenting the setting. What’s most notable, however, is its clever portrayal of stop-motion characters. As a game acting under the guise of a real life B-Movie, there are many enemies that, within that “movie”, were created using stop-motion. The way that these enemies look and move is nothing short of incredible, and one of the finest graphical choices I’ve seen in any game. Completely of its own, and that deserves extreme merit.
There isn’t all too much to say about this game’s audio except that it’s comfortably above average. It features excellent voice acting throughout, spiced up by a background of lovingly composed music. Sound effects are gleefully retro and barely a foot is put wrong, while admittedly no steps are taken forward either. The main problem with sound design is how incessant the rambling voice of the narrator is, although I accept that’s more a flaw with the writing since there’s nothing wrong with his voice acting or production.
It’s lucky sevens all around for The Deadly Tower of Monsters! A deeply promising and endearing game, its negatives are generally something you’ll be happy to ignore. Perhaps not an immensely deep experience, it is a detailed and passionately created one. The bottom line is that it’s fun, and very hard to get angry with. A quality title of immense potential in a sea of disappointing shite, I hope that it sticks out from the crowd enough to get the attention it deserves. That’s mainly so its team can get on with making a better and more refined sequel though…