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Game Info:

The Weaponographist
Developed by: Puuba
Published by: Mastertronic
Released: April 29, 2015
Available on: Windows, Mac OS X
Genre: Rogue-like, Action
Number of players: 1 offline
Price: $9.99
(Amazon Affiliate Link)

Thank you, Mastertronic, for sending us a copy of this game to review!

The Weaponographist is a rogue-like, action game similar in playstyle to the first Legend of Zelda game, or more recently, the Binding of Isaac or A Wizard's Lizard. You control Doug McGrave, a demon hunter with a legendary reputation, likely perpetuated by another minor character in the game, Bardtholomew Bardcakes. The short, balding character appears in the introduction and in the village of Hellside. Since he chronicles the adventures of Doug McGrave, I have to wonder what he would write about this adventure. I would imagine it goes something like this....

–----

I love being the bard of the ferocious and handsome Doug McGrave! Right now, as I write this, we are in a small village with a funny name. It sounds a lot like my hometown of Hillside, but they spell it oddly – instead of an “i,” they use an “e.” That makes it sound like – oh! I get it now!

Anyway, we're here because while Mr. McGrave and I were traveling through a spooky forest, a creepy old lady came up to us and said that her town needed help. Apparently, it was being overrun with demons! She didn't have any money to pay us, though. Doug explained nicely that we had other, wealthier clients who needed our help, but the old lady was very persuasive. Doug decided to help out this small community of four people out of the goodness of his heart! It has nothing to do with the evil curse that the old lady put on him that made all his weapons break!

The Weaponographist
Highlights:

Strong Points: Colorful graphics; clever gameplay elements; silly setting and dialogue
Weak Points: Can be a bit difficult
Moral Warnings: Crude humor; some characters wearing bikinis; minor language

Yep, all his great weapons are gone. Now he can only keep his hands on one weapon at a time, and the more he uses it, the quicker it will wear out. But he can't defeat the monsters in the dungeon with just his fists! Fortunately, all those monsters pack weapons. Each monster uses a different type of weapon. Like those dark elves in the red bikinis use bows, and the headless swordsmen use swords. Of course, there are some really weird weapons, too. These pink gorillas use chainsaws, and I think someone even attacked Doug with a yo-yo! It's a good thing that Doug is such a wonderful demon hunter, because he knows how to use all these weapons! Even tubas and machine guns!

Oh, and he needs to kill these monsters quickly, too. As part of the curse, he loses experience if he isn't killing. He gets experience by killing monsters, though. He has to keep a “combo bar” up, whatever that is, in order to keep his current level. He does that by carving through all the monsters, causing them to explode into gooey bits! 

I don't know why the people of this little town decided to build at the entrance of a spooky dungeon. That was kind of dumb, if you ask me. No wonder they are always under attack! But the people there are willing to help Doug McGrave learn how to improve the weapons he finds, or make his spells work better, or even work on lifting the curse that mean witch cast on him. But they don't use gold or copper coins as currency – instead, they trade in “demon goop.” That's some of the leftover ick that remains after Doug kills a demon. Merchants are weird sometimes. That “John Smith” does make some of the tastiest tacos I've ever had, though!

Even though the people call the creatures in the dungeon “demons,” not many of them look like demons. There are goblins with spears, mutant ninja lizards, evil trees, and more. There even was some sort of tyrannosaurus rex with laser cannons! He threw up a lot. Maybe it's because he could smell the farting unicorns on the lower levels. But at least these monsters don't kill Doug when he falls in battle. They just rough him up a bit and dump him at the entrance to the town.

Everything looks funny here – and I mean that literally. It's like all the monsters and the people are characters from my favorite comic, “The Ongoing Adventures of Doug McGrave.” Some people even say I look funny! But not Doug – he looks as heroic as ever. The music they play can get a bit repetitious, though. I've tried to introduce them to new songs, but apparently they don't like rounds of “Row Row Row Your Boat.” The people here have no respect for classical music. I hope that Mr. McGrave can get to the end of the dungeon so he can lift the curse, and we can go someplace with a better appreciation for good art!

–------

The Weaponographist
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 90%
Gameplay - 18/20
Graphics - 9/10
Sound - 8/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 5/5

Morality Score - 83%
Violence - 5/10
Language - 7.5/10
Sexual Content - 8/10
Occult/Supernatural - 10/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 10/10

Of course, there are some things that Bardtholomew can't write about since he's, you know, a fictional character in a video game. For example, this game can be fairly difficult. A lot of enemies can appear on the screen, and it's easy to get overwhelmed if you aren't too careful. Doug McGrave will be defeated many times, but each time you'll learn a bit more about the enemies and good tactics to take them out. Combined with the ability to increase weapon skills by spending enough goop, the levels get easier over time. The game does include a “hardcore” mode, and just recently, a new “survival” mode also has been added. So even if the base game is completed, players can continue to enjoy the game and compete against others around the world to make it onto the leaderboards.

The controls to the game are sharp and responsive. The WASD keys are used to steer Doug McGrave, and the arrow keys launch attacks in the direction indicated. Picking up weapons and using magic items is done with simple button presses as well. Not only that, the game allows for full controller support, and includes a nice, easy way to map the controller keys to whatever you're comfortable with. The game works great with a game controller!

My silly little attempt to highlight the game also demonstrated some of the moral concerns, too. The game does have crude humor, including flatulent unicorns and regurgitating dinosaurs. The word “hell” is repeated often, primarily because of the name of the town being “Hellside,” but aside from the occasional “damn,” and “jerkass” (the latter is often how people describe McGrave) that's about the extent of the language issues. The “archer” character does look like a dark elf woman wearing a red bikini, but it's not terribly revealing, due to the angle. More revealing, however, is the goblin's bare bottom on the victory screen. The violence is cartoony, with the enemies occasionally disappearing into red blood splatters. There can be bones and skulls seen in the randomly-generated rooms and the menu screen as well.

Even though Bardtholomew may disagree with me, this isn't the greatest game I've ever played. It does have a charming appeal, though. The challenge of having to constantly hunt for new weapons is a clever twist on a tried-and-true formula. With clever characters, fun weapons and a zany atmosphere, as well as a reasonable price of $9.99, The Weaponographist will please fans of this genre for quite some time.

 

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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