Reviews: Scott Pilgrim

(game review) Fun Retraux brawler, but seriously needs tweaking

There's a lot of things I like about this game. The graphics are very detailed and smoothly animated pixel art with a ton of personality. The music is catchy, especially the song for the first level. And the multiplayer is fun, when I've gotten to play it.

But I think the game really could stand to be tweaked quite a bit. It just doesn't seem to reach its full potential.

For one, the RPG Elements are a little off. You collect money and use it to buy upgrades, but upgrading your character can soon result in you getting absurdly powerful. The game saves your upgrades separately per user account, which can result in another player being very weak compared to you. This wouldn't be such a big deal, if the game was structured in the style of River City Ransom, which it is clearly borrowing ideas from.

But it isn't. It's a straightforward, level-by-level action brawler designed around multiplayer play and linear progression. Yes, you can backtrack to previous levels to buy upgrades in stores, but that goes against the flow. Not helping is the fact that most of the stores are only located in the first level. If the game had stores in every level, players would be more likely to just stop in the store and buy upgrades as they progress through the level, creating a gameplay flow more similar to Dungeons And Dragons Shadow Over Mystara, where purchasing things inbetween levels is common and the gameplay flow is built around straightforward progression, while not neglecting the RPG Elements.

For that matter, the leveling flow is a bit off. At the beginning of the game, enemies take a large number of hits to kill, but as you upgrade, they go down more easily. The enemies begin to get faster and stronger and more aggressive, but not necessarily have inordinate amounts of life relative to you, if you've been upgrading. It's ridiculous that you can go from having the game put up a big fight at the beginning, to becoming so powerful that the game's challenge becomes a complete joke even on the highest difficulty, with very little effort overall.

It's a shame the game is so lopsided with these elements, and I think it might have been better off without them. As it is, this is a fun multiplayer brawler with some RPG Elements clumsily added in without enough thought put into them.