Balancing offence and defence is easier said than done. Sometimes, fear takes hold and you want to run away. Other times, you become gung ho and you lose your mind. Whatever occurs, it is bound to have serious ramifications. This is exactly what happens in Arsonist Heaven.
Developed by OMEGACORE and Ratalaika Games and Eastasiasoft Limited, this is a retro-inspired 2D side-scrolling platformer. It is a title that uses some tried and tested mechanics and blends them with tough and unforgiving moments. Consequently, it is not a walk in the park, even though it is really easy to understand.
Arsonist Heaven will enrage you.
There is no doubt about it. Arsonist Heaven is a tough title. As such, it will enrage you as you fail, die, and fail again. In theory, everything should be straightforward. In reality, it is not. You must learn to manage resources while trying to kill everything in sight. However, your overpowered foes run rings around you. Therefore, a tactical and calm approach must be considered.
The story, on the other hand, is much easier to digest. You are a hunter who is sent to annihilate his foes. Each world he visits has a set number of enemies, and he can’t progress until they are eliminated. Simple, so far, right? Well, here is where it hots up! You must visit a volcano, desert, icy tundra, and forest. Each of these locations breeds unique monsters with different abilities. If you can survive this onslaught and not run out of ammo, you’ll complete your mission, and become a hero.
Classic platforming and limited resources.
Though I loved the madness of the fighting, the classic platforming elements were better. Thanks to its traditional approach, it reeked of nostalgia. I adored leaping from surfaces, finding hidden paths, and falling into the unknown. If you combine this with the brutality of the shooting mechanics, you get an interesting and addictive result.
Alongside this, the minor tactical nuances make it stand out from its peers. Because of the limited resources and a large array of obstacles, death is a very real threat. Therefore, you must study each stage, concoct a plan, and hope that you’re successful.
Each weapon is fuelled by gas canisters. If you run out, and you have no alternative gun, you are doomed. As such, you must scour the stage for resources, gather new weapons, and fire sparingly. After all, you won’t want to fail because you run out of ammo, will you?
Arsonist Heaven: a pixel title with a modern finish.
So many people groan whenever pixelated graphics are mentioned. However, I love this dated style! Yet, what I love more is pixel graphics with a modern finish. Arsonist Heaven captures the retro vibes perfectly because of the simple sprites and garish colours. Yet, it doesn’t look rough and its modern polish makes it pleasant to look at. What’s more, the backdrops are unique and varied, and each monster has a distinctive animation.
What, perhaps, wasn’t so modern, was the retro audio. The synthesised soundtrack and basic sound effects worked well but were at odds with the visuals. It was a little strange, but I liked it, nonetheless. The weapons sound loud and aggressive and add to the drama. Furthermore, the music is ever present, so there is never a lull in the energy.
Rarely does a game get its control system spot on. Consequently, perfect controls are hard to come by. But, Arsonist Heaven is pretty damn close. Thanks to an excellent UI and responsive inputs it is easy to play. Furthermore, the basics are easy to understand. Accordingly, the only thing to hold you back is your lack of skill.
Because the gameplay is so brutal, it’s oddly addictive. Subsequently, you won’t want to put it down, no matter how much it kicks your ass. If you then consider the 4 worlds, the array of enemies, and the arsenal of weapons, this has longevity and replay value.
Arsonist Heaven is unusual, but familiar.
Arsonist Heaven is retro in so many ways, that its action feels oddly familiar. The eclectic blend of combat, tactics, and platforming will test your patience, reactions, and planning. Furthermore, it’ll make you scream while demanding you return for more. Consequently, it’s rewarding, cruel but oh so moreish. It is for these reasons that I recommend you to buy it here! Being a hunter is never easy. Yet, by planning and being patient, you can become a hero.