- Manufacturer: Wolfbrew Games
- Publisher: Digerati Distribution
- Genre: Action Indie
- Release Date: 21.10.2016
- Platforms: Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Windows
- Game Supplied by: Xbox
“Get used to it”.
That’s the first achievement I earned from this game, because within about 30 seconds after Bathoryn was revived from his slumber, I killed him. Well, start as you mean to go on eh? (Actually, I didn’t get that one).
So we have another game built on the same style we old folk remember so well – pixel graphics, limited gameplay, utterly hard as nails levels which are borderline frustrating as hell and enough gore to earn it’s place on the same shelf as the original Doom, Ghouls and Ghosts and Splatterhouse. The trouble with this game is, screenshots really don’t do it any justice. It may have an old school look but the animations are smooth and the combat is just about perfect.
Basically in this game Bathoryn has been raised from the dead to vanquish the land of evil beasties and hideous monsters, what else do you need? Progress through the first tutorial level which teaches the simple stuff, more levels unlocks the 3 elemental class weapons and that’s it. Off you go to save the land. Oh, and die. A lot.
“A Good Day To Die” – You have been killed 100 times. Rejoice! Urgh!
If you’re unfamiliar with this game it has its roots firmly planted in the 80s from when the original was created. So thankfully the devs didn’t just keep the retro style music, they grabbed the soundtrack recorded by Curt Victor Bryant which is a full rock/metal score perfectly fitting the ambiance of this game. If that’s not enough, there is the atypical naked woman dotted around the landscape simply because you can’t have a rock themed anything without them! A cool feature included in the options menu is the ability to mimic the display type of an old CRT screen which I think is a really nice touch!
Throughout the game you will encounter many creatures, and using your elemental weapons and simple magic attacks you’ll eventually rise victorious! I don’t think everyone will be able to though, and I fear I will be one of them. I enjoy a challenge, but sometimes constant death doesn’t equal fun, it inevitably becomes frustration. I found myself swearing more than I would admit, and reaching those checkpoint lanterns far more relieving than they should be! It really is a game for the Dark Souls gamers who enjoy putting themselves through torture. Although some of my frustrations may have come from either my controller, or a slight glitch with the game – if I ran left, and stopped abruptly by letting go of the thumbstick, my guy would end up facing the other way. Really irritating when you wanted to knock that fireball away from you, but instead get reduced to cinders.
I can’t complain about the death scenes though, because not only are you being killed by whatever appears on your screen there are hidden traps all over. One false move around those and you’re reduced to warm jam.
Slain: Back From Hell has its moments. It’s a fun game, perhaps particularly for the nostalgic players to once again play a gruesome game with a tough grind to completion. The 80s pixel graphics actually do this one justice, and the music score is awesome! It’s just a shame death comes a little too easy.