Heart&Slash was originally a game that was first introduced on Kickstarter and then successfully funded back in 2014. After which developers released the game on Steam Early Access to gather feedback from the community. Now it’s 2016 and the game is available worldwide on PS4 after what the developers believe to be the best game they could possibly put out.
Heart&Slash is a fast-paced 3D brawler with roguelike elements set in a colorful post-apocalyptic world. Players initially take on the role of Heart, a malfunctioning robot trying to escape the grip of the evil and all-seeing QuAsSy (Quality Assurance Systems). Along the way, you meet Slash. Naturally, Heart tries to capture Slash’s attention through several playthroughs — which is far from easy since Slash is a somewhat rough veteran. Heart&Slash is no walk in the park. Every death is permanent and means a new randomly generated level for you to start over with a different set of weapons and items you can use, new enemies to fight and secrets to explore.
Now with all the introductory mumbo jumbo out of the way, I got a chance to play about 30 minutes of Heart& Slash. At first, I really didn’t know what to make of the game. The camera controls are really twitchy and sensitive and there really isn’t much instruction given when you first start out.
However, Heart&Slash doesn’t take very long to figure out and I was able to figure out much of what you sort of need to do and how to do it. From what I can gather, Heart&Slash is a hack and slash game, one in which each playthough is slightly different. Make your way through various rooms and clear them of enemies to move on to the next one. You’ll also be able to find and equip new weapons and bodies, each with a different set of skills.
Death in this game will be a common occurrence, but luckily you will be able to restart, even though it’ll be all the way back at the beginning. Like stated above, each playthrough is different and you’ll notice how the map changes each time. Most of my time in my first few playthroughs were just to figure out what to do. Combat feels pretty good though learning what weapons and bodies do what can take some time. Also, the camera system like I stated above is very twitchy and sensitive. Note sure if there is an option to reduce the sensitivity or not.
As for the art style, everything is so blocky and geometric and it reminds me so much of the 32-bit era of gaming. The environments are ok, nothing to spectacular, but work well for the game. Enemy designs are really good and very “mech-ish”. Many of them look like deformed versions of Gundams.
Aside from all the action in the game, there is also a story behind it all, but I don’t think 30 minutes really allowed me to get a good understanding of what’s going on.
For the most part though, Heart&Slash seems very good. I like the action. I like the art. I like how everything changes with each playthrough. I don’t know about the story yet, but it does seem like there will be something more there once I play more of it.