LifeisXbox’s Blazing Beaks review | In recent years the so-called pseudo-roguelikes have abounded; where if our character dies, everything is lost, but a certain sense of progress is preserved like characters, unlocked items, alternate levels, etc. The latest exponent of this genre comes to us from a small Lithuanian studio called Applava. The name of the game? Blazing Beaks. And, as we will see, his first work is certainly based on games like The Binding of Isaac or Enter The Gungeon, but it also shows its own personality.
We played Blazing Beaks for about 20 hours on Xbox One Series X. This game is also available on PC & Nintendo Switch.
What we liked!
- Some peculiar protagonists | One of the things that can attract attention at first are the main characters of the game. The protagonists are birds, specifically. Which will cause the player to find a duck, a parrot or a chicken throwing bombs and plasma shots.
- A design that fits very well | The reason for this design decision is obvious, and in a way, it works. The game is beautiful to see, and contrast is generated between not only the characters but also the settings and the enemies, with quite bright colours and with the violence that is usually generated.
- Various game modes | We have a good variety of game modes, where the main mode, “Story mode”, stands out. Here we will go through the different worlds that make up the game, with different procedurally generated sublevels and it’s where we’ll spend the most playtime. it’s also the only way in which it will be possible to unlock objects so that they appear in successive games. This mode also allows us to play cooperatively, with up to three more players. In addition to the Story mode, there are two more modes, “Seeded” and “Tournament,” although these will not unlock new items or characters. In the “Seeded” mode – a derivative of “Seed” – it’s possible to vary the “seed” used for the procedural generation of the world, so that, for the same seed, the world will always be generated in the same way. It can be used as training, or competitively. But for the competition as such, the “Tournament” mode has been added, in which there will be 5 game modes so that up to four players can compete. Again, an online component is missing that would significantly extend life in this way, since right now it can only be played locally.
- Good variety of characters and abilities | When starting a game, we can choose between the four available characters, plus the three hidden ones that will be unlocked by fulfilling certain achievements in the game. Each character has a different weapon and abilities, it will not be the same to play with the duck, whose weapon has a limited range at first but the character can fire several bursts quickly after being a second without firing, then with the chicken, which has a slow but damaging weapon at long ranges. The different animals that we can handle are quite well-differentiated, I have to say that, after a few hours of play, I already have my favorite characters and those I liked the least.
- Many ways to advance in the game | Even considering these reminiscences to other games of the same genre, we have commented that the game has its own personality. And this is marked by its visual style, the curiosity of its characters, but above all by the artefacts. These are the cornerstone of Blazing Beaks. Unlike in other similar games, in Blazing Beaks the player usually will not find objects within the game that will help him to kill enemies more quickly. No better team will be found. You will not find a more powerful weapon, you will not find an armour that increases your life points, nor will you find shoes that make you go faster. In fact, it’s going to be totally the opposite. Artefacts are objects that will add something negative to the game. One may make enemies fast, another may cause the player’s shots to lose 40% of their damage, another may prevent the player from getting more coins from downed enemies, or another may cause them all to be lost current currencies. There are quite a few modifiers that will change the game for the worse. These will be dropped by the enemies from time to time when they die, as well as the coins, and it will be the player’s decision whether to take them or not.
- A sound section that doesn’t stand out | As for the sound section, it doesn’t particularly stand out, typical music of the genre with fast rhythms that doesn’t reach the player but does not bother either, so it fulfils its role. Although the main theme is worth mentioning, with the “quacks” of the ducks. Which does not stand out.
What we disliked
- Local-only multiplayer | It should be noted that the cooperative is only allowed locally, without the possibility of playing online with friends or strangers. And obviously, today it’s something that not everyone can enjoy since it is public knowledge that we are in a global pandemic. But it’s a game that could be enjoyed a lot in a multiplayer way.
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