Developed By: 2ndBoss Published By: QUByte Categories: Shooter, Platformer, Retro Release Date: 04.15.21
In the year 2021, I have managed to play two games that have the same premise, an endless Halloween, with your choice of character’s duty to stop it. Both are retro games, and both have run and gun mechanics. They both are also rather fun.
Savage Halloween has more of shooter, from point A to B with some secrets, as opposed to Halloween Forever’s explorative levels with lots of secrets and unlockables. As a matter of fact, your characters just outright hold guns, but instead of each character having their own unique kinds of bullets to fire, you pick up creative ammunition as you go. A Spread shot that shoots bats, Frogs that slide on the floor and do lots of damage, ghosts that go back and forth, and Chicken Combs that stick to surfaces and explode. Each character has their own variant of Health, Speed, and Jump. James being balanced, Lulu having the most health, and Dominika having the best movement. Each character also has their own special attack, with Dominika’s screen clearing bats being my favorite.
Each level has six stages, with the sixth being the boss. The first four are usually standard, but I noticed the fifth spins things up a bit. A shmup level and something resembling the turbo tunnel from Battletoads are just the first two you’ll see. Savage Halloween is not a long game, so diversions like this aren’t needed, but I love that the developer put the time and effort in to putting these in to spice the game up. That said, it can feel at times that these stages can wear out their welcome and drag on for slightly too long.
The bosses are honestly a weak point to the game for me. Often it feels like there is too much going on and there’s very few ways to avoid attacks, especially when the boss distracts you with smaller enemies. Thankfully, dying in a boss fight doesn’t send you back. Infact, dying in the game at all won’t send you back, you start back where you died. Running out of lives and using a continue will restart a stage though. Getting a Game Over isn’t the end of the world either, as you can always start back from the beginning of a level, granted without your extra ammo.
Spritework in Savage Halloween is great, especially the backgrounds. Bosses are all big and detailed. There’s a lot of enemies in the game, though you’re going to see a lot of recolors as well. Each area does have it’s own unique enemies at the very least, my favorite being Santa.
While the music is good and is the kind to get you pumped up to play and moving, it does have that standard, exciting NES soundtrack feel. I feel like I’ve heard it before. Not bad, but not something that’ll stick with me.
Savage Halloween is a fun run and gun. The game might have a few too many times where I personally feel you can’t avoid damage, but it’s otherwise a forgiving game. I love the whole cutesy, soft horror feel a lot of Halloween games have, so I’m glad to have another game this year to add to the collection.
Buy Now: $4.99
*Game Download Code graciously supplied for the purpose of review