Easily one of last year’s most endearing indie games, Enter the Gungeon has already created quite a ruckus with its roguelike design and twin-stick shooting action. But now Nintendo Switch owners can get a turn with Dodge Roll’s effort, being able to take their running and gunning (gungeoning?) wherever they see fit. And they shouldn’t hesitate, because it’s easily one of the best games you can get for the system right now.
The game starts with you picking from one of many different gunners (gungeoners?) and then setting out to clear each room with whatever weapons you can get your hands on. You start out with a basic pistol with unlimited ammunition, but as time goes on, you’ll be able to get your hands on some nifty firepower, including assault rifles, guns with “bouncy” ammunition, explosive weaponry and so much more.
In fact, the general goal of the game is to continue your runs and fill out what’s known as an Ammonomicon, a book that details a bit of history for each weapon. The more you learn from these tools, the better they’ll be to you down the road, especially as you face off against adversaries with an incredible assortment of firepower.
Enter the Gungeon’s control style is pretty simple. The left analog stick is for movement, the right is for aiming, and you utilize trigger buttons to shoot at enemies and “dodge roll” out of harm’s way. That dodge roll, by the way, is an incredible technique, as you’ll be able to get across lethal gaps and dodge incoming fire without breaking a sweat. You’ll still have your work cut out for you, but if you master this technique, there’s nothing stopping you from making good progress in the game.
The developers have done a splendid job utilizing Gungeon’s control scheme for the Switch, so that it’s fun to play both in handheld and TV form. No matter which option you take, the action’s fairly easy to see, and the game handles like a dream – even though everything that’s coming at you is the equivalent of a nightmare. As you progress, you’ll find things get ridiculously tough, especially as you face off against imaginative bosses, such as a king that rides around in an auto-firing chair, or a bird-man that has affection for his chaingun.
And there’s replayability galore. Along with being able to collect new weapons within the game, there are hidden secrets, along with shops where you can purchase goods (just don’t shoot at the shopkeeper – you were warned) and levels that consistently change with each playthrough. It’s never really the same game twice, which makes Enter the Gungeon that much more thrilling to play.
The design looks like something out of 16-bit design, with a top-down approach akin to The Legend of Zelda: A Link To the Past, but with more ingenuity into the design. You can literally use most tables in the environment for cover, which you’ll need in some situations; and the enemy design goes off the charts, from bullet dudes that actually shoot ammunition at you to weird blobs that drop an array of fireworks-like attacks towards you. The game still looks great after a year and a half, and shines on the Switch.
I liked the music as well, a mix of old school and cinematic-style scores that really works, especially in the later levels of the game. And the sound effects are minimal, but still effective, like when you defeat an opponent and hear that victorious last gasp before they succumb to their wounds. Huzzah!
You’ve probably already got a lot of Nintendo Switch games on your plate already, between The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey and the countless indie games you still have to play through. But Enter the Gungeon shouldn’t be missed, as it takes all the goodness that worked with last year’s version and makes it that much more adaptable on Nintendo’s system. Plus, it’s fun as hell. Or, should I say, “gun” as hell? Okay, that’s enough puns…
Disclaimer: A review copy was provided by the publisher.