John Gore has gone too deep to turn back now. He's found himself surrounded by countless furries (hairy black furred beasties with beady eyes and very sharp teeth). Sure he may have a machinegun with endless ammo (heck, he doesn?t even have to reload the thing), but there appear to be infinity +1 furries in this dark forest. These furries come in multiple flavors. While all are black, furry, and EXTREMELY nasty, they come in three different sizes. From little scurries, slower moving medium sized guys, and lastly slowly lumbering giants. While the smallest furries go down with one bullet, the bigger ones just seems to break apart into smaller furries when shot which makes completely taking out a giant furry a lot like swatting a hive of wasps. Some of the smaller ones are on fire which, possibly from the searing pain, motivates them to move faster. Did I already mention the sharp teeth? There is no difference in lethality from the different sizes. A bite is a bite be it from a tiny swamp rat or a huge mastodon sized baddy and two bites will mean it?s curtains for our hero.
Even though John Gore has absolutely no chance of survival, there appear to be two types of rarely dropped perks from the baddies that can at least help him take out a few more before his number is up. The first of these is the incredibly lucky four-leaf clover. John?s years of elite Special Forces training has allowed him, even in the heat of combat, to spot important floral phenomenon such as four leaf clovers. When would his need for luck ever be greater? You do, however, know what happens once somebody finds three such lucky clovers, right? You briefly turn into an invincible flaming Minotaur, of course! The other rarely appearing item takes the form of a crate of shotgun ammo. This box of ammo can be used in two different ways. If John scoops it up he?s got a limited supply of shot gun blasts (a nice cone of devastating fire) or if he shoots the crate enough with his machine gun it will simply blow up with a nifty devastating area of effect blast (there is no concern for the blast harming Mr. Gore due to his flame resistant long johns).
This game can easily be summed up as a pretty simplistic dual stick survival top down shooter with boatloads of style and humor. Incredible cubist 3D cartoony animation (both John and the baddies are essentially made of cubes), great sound effects, and a great sense of humor (one of his better lines, ?Get off my legs?oh wait?I don?t actually have legs?). Within ten minutes you really have seen all the game has to offer other than it repeating all of what you have already seen at an even more punishing level (much like an old retro game of Asteroids or Space Invaders). So as a simplistic shooter for a $1, this game has incredible production values and spot on controls. This is a definite buy if you?re into these kind of quick pick up and shoot games. One of the cooler selling points of this game, and, yes, it does require you to make a slight leap of faith, is that this is only the beginning (even the game?s title, ?Minigore: Episode 1? supports this concept as well as many interesting hints at future content in the game?s opening splash screen) with all sorts of additional content in the works (the first update is already promising a radar, a mushroom power-up, and the ability for John Gore to take more than two hits before dying). The developer has spoken of multiplayer support and new levels with different baddies (like a snow level with John fighting against what looks like some sort of Russian troops).
Ratings (scale of 1 to 5):
Graphics: -5- Stylistic cubist cartoon in 3D. Sound: -5- Big bold action movie soundtrack with beasty snarls, explosions, and occasional witty quips from John. Controls: -5- Simple, intuitive, and very responsive dual stick fun. Gameplay: -4- The gameplay is great but I docked it a point for now simply since there still isn?t much to it (one level, one beast in four sizes, and two powerups) yet. I?m confident this aspect will move up to a 5+ after the first few updates.
Playing Hints and Tips: -If you know you?ll soon be going into beast mode, you may want to avoid shooting any of the large furries. They?re a lot easier to deal with by simply walking into them than trying to shoot all of their offspring individually.
-Since the ammo crates can be used two ways, learn how to best appraise which form of the powerup would help you most in your current situation.
-Those furries are sneaky! Not only do they like to pop out of bushes but I've noticed it's often hard to see the ones coming up from the bottom of the screen. Not only are your hands in the way, sometimes it is hard to distinguish their fury backs from shadows in the scenery.
Game Facts: Developer: Chillingo Release Date: July 30th 2009 Genre: Action/Survival Shooter Price: $0.99 Buy Game: iTunes App Store
The developer of Minigore, Chillingo, let us know that an update to the game will hit the App Store soon. Here is more info on the upcoming update:
"It will feature a new character, Lizzy from Sway. Lizzy is the first of many characters that will cross over from other games to duke it out in Minigore monster mania. Each one will be featured in its own episode."