Review Iron Crypticle

 Iron Crypticle 

Developed by Confused Pelican Games and published by Tikipod Ltd (who delivered us the great Aqua Kitty UDX earlier this year), Iron Crypticle is an arcade twin-stick shooter, explore dark and dangerous dungeons to rescue the kidnapped princess and recover the treasures of the kingdom. What did we think about it? Check it out on our review.

THE GOOD

  • The game is all about destroying your enemies as fast as you can and collecting as many points as possible, like good old arcade games! To achieve it, you control your hero with your left stick while throwing axes, hammers, spears, grenades and many other weapons you can get with your right stick. Pressing the RB-button you have a dash that you can use to escape danger (or damage enemies, if you prefer). With A you activate one of the many magic scrolls you pick up during exploration. And with LB you activate your single use magic gauntlet that destroy all enemies in a large area around you (what can, literally, save you depending on the situation).
  • I always mention it, but I love local coop games. 4 players local coop even more! And this game really shines in this aspect. With three other players sharing the same screen (and pickups), things tend to become more and more crazy! Nothing good pals can’t take care of.
  • Each floor of the dungeon where you are venturing is represented by a map of interconnected rooms. To advance to a new room, you must destroy all the enemies of the current room. Just remember you shall never go back: you can only advance until you reach the boss of the level. After destroying it, you gain access to a lower floor, with more rooms, more enemies and much more challenges. And did I mention they’re randomly generated?
  • The game also contains some RPG aspects: you gain XP as you advance through levels and can upgrade your status spending coins in stores (indicated by the symbol of a coin in your map… don’t miss it!) run by a flurry cat (ownnnn!). And trust me: you won’t survive the lower floors without upgrading your skills properly.
  • The game is designed in rich and colorful pixel art. And I can’t express how much I admire this kind of art used in games. Level designs are simple, but great! You will see mostly dark tones of blue, gray and brown, but each one of the rooms have its own ambiance, making them very interesting.
  • You have two game modes: the regular one and the endless one, where you can see how many points you can get, comparing your score to a global leaderboard.

MIXED FEELINGS

  • Pixel art graphics are not for everyone. My younger sister, for instance, dislikes them (she was born during the late 90’s and started to play games with my first PlayStation, so she considers them ‘too old’ for her), while I simply love them! And I respect her (and your) opinion about it. Nevertheless, sometimes, it’s hard to differ what’s that blowing red ore on the ground. Will it be a cherry, waiting for you to pick it up and stack some more points, or a grenade, ready to blow up on you? Or when you don’t know if that barrier is, in fact, a wall that shall halt your evasive maneuver or simply some details of the floor. Some more details could have been used in this aspect.

 

THE BAD

  • The game is one of those multiplayer games focused only in local multiplayer. Not that I don’t like it, as you may have already read in this text, but I always think about those who can’t play with their friends over the same coach. Why not include an online multiplayer mode? (Although I know how much extra work that is for an indie-dev)
  • It doesn’t matter how many different rooms, ways or enemies you have defeated: sooner or later you’ll start to see how repetitive the game becomes after a while. And how long it takes will depend on your skill (dying over and over helps accelerate this process) and how many people you have playing by your side, because the more people you’ve got to play with, funnier and challenging it becomes.

Inspired by arcade classics, Iron Crypticle has everything it needs to be enjoyed by any kind of gamer, from casual to hardcore! Clearly inspired on (more ‘evolved from’ than ‘inspired on’) the PC game Iron Fistcicle released in 2014 (in case you didn’t know it), the developer was able to get in the game the spirit of old classics like Gauntlet and Ghoul and Goblins, just to name a few. Now here’s my question for you: Do you have what it takes to defeat all the monsters that hides under the castle?

Iron Crypticle

Iron Crypticle
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Pros

  • Fun gameplay
  • 4 player co-op (local)
  • Randomly generated maps, prolonging your interest in the game

Cons

  • Becomes repetitive after some time
  • No online option