234 people found this review helpful
10 people found this review funny
0.0 hrs last two weeks / 453.8 hrs on record (116.3 hrs at review time)
Posted: Jul 30, 2014 @ 11:13pm
Updated: Jul 31, 2014 @ 7:48pm

Early Access Review
Do you know crunch? I mean, do you truly know the incredibly visceral, powerful and satisfying feedback that is crunch? Now go into Nuclear Throne and smack a maggots nest with a sledgehammer. Go on, I don't mind. Being inanimate text that a person typed and then abandoned, I have no sense of time. It'll be like kicking good vibes across a punch bowl (I'm also hit-and-miss with simile).

Okay, you're back! How was it-- Ohhh, I know that look! Your eyes have the enlightened glint of one who has tried the good stuff, the real deal, the prime reserve. You can't go back, now. Now, you know crunch. The real crunch. This is Nuclear Throne, and it's appeal cannot be simply summed up in a few words. It's referred to as an "action roguelike-like(-like)" because it is difficult to put into a genre. Because it is its own genre. If I were to call it anything, it would probably be "Randomly-Generated Action Crunch with Permadeath", which I am predicting will be a cereal by 2019 (sans permadeath, unless we don't have randomly-generated cereals by then, in which case I WANT to die).

Everything about this game is crunchy. There's a power-up based leveling system (further referred to as they are in game, "mutations"), a charming and variant cast of playable characters, tons of weapons (about 73 as of this writing, but I was just in on a stream where they rather liked my suggestion of adding nunchuks), crazy enemies, b-skins, rule-altering pickups and even local 2-player! And the art and music-- Ohhh, the art and music! The beautiful and detailed pixel art, the energizing (sometimes haunting) tracks and impeccable sound design frankly shocked me. Such character and atmosphere I found myself immersed in!

The game is so easy to pick up, and yet the way you develop your character is incredibly deep. The developers waste none of their time (and consequently, your time) on anything that doesn't feel just awesome. Sure, "Mutation A" doesn't seem very good, at first. But once you learn more about "Characters D and E" and how they synergize splendidly with "Mutation A" when paired with "Mutation G", you get an "Aha" moment! Like a challenging, yet ultimately rewarding puzzle, Nuclear Throne holds a plethora of "Aha" moments for those willing to scratch past the surface and experiment with the MASSIVE number of possible character builds. And you need no mutation to love a samurai chicken! C'mon.

The developers are two guys, who comprise Vlambeer, and four others who handle the art, music and sound. They're the most down-to-earth, approachable and generally cool guys to ever make a game, probably (permission to put that on the back cover = granted). They generally update the game every Saturday with new characters, baddies, weapons, difficulty balancing and bug fixes. They even stream themselves developing said changes every Tuesday and Thursday on their Twitch channel (http://www.twitch.tv/vlambeer)! And they take feedback like pros! None of this "bleuuu, you don't like my game, banned and deleted" business. They're good people.

Oh, and you'll be dying a lot. I didn't "beat" the game until I had already logged around 100 hours (there's an end-boss, but you loop back to the beginning with higher difficulty upon defeating it), but that didn't stop me from thoroughly enjoying every minute up until that point and after! This is a fantasticly addictive game, with a fantastic community and fantastic developers that is already easy to recommend. The fact that it promises to only get better is just gravy!

And yes, I did a "let's play":
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NeoBahamut86 Nov 16, 2014 @ 4:14pm 
After Luftrausers I wanted to support Vlambeer, but I was uncertain whether to buy the game during Early Access or later. Your fantastic review sold me. After 48 hours of playing, I can only say... thanks!!!!
cheese.9898 Oct 20, 2014 @ 9:37pm 
Who the fuck rated down this review? Seriously. Who did it?
When i find the people who rated this down I'll.... well.... I'll feed them day-old pizza that i found in my fridge just now!
That kinda' sucks right?
noghettoblastrs Oct 5, 2014 @ 7:09am 
I have come back to this review to say that smacking a maggot nest with a sledgehammer is so satisfying.
A_Rolling_Donut Sep 14, 2014 @ 11:31am 
This was a really good review. Cosign with Rude Dude below, you sold the game to me. Wishlisted, awaiting funds.
Kissy Sisters EXTREME 2 HD Sep 6, 2014 @ 5:17pm 
What is crunch?
Markside Aug 21, 2014 @ 1:47pm 
Your writings iz goods!
k a m i g o y e Aug 14, 2014 @ 3:36am 
This review talked me into purchasing the game. I'd seen plenty of videos of it in action, had read about it a ton, and salivated at the idea of getting my hands on it. But it being early access and not really having too much hype behind it gave me reservation, despite my anticipation. Until I read this review.

So, thanks bud. You did a great job of conveying how the game feels to play, which was the one thing I had the most doubt about. "Crunch" describes it perfectly. And now I know crunch. c:
David Aug 10, 2014 @ 6:02pm 
Randomly generated cereals. Review was helpful.
Hefty Howler Jul 31, 2014 @ 4:26pm 
This... this is incredibly eloquent, I DO want to get the game, once I can afford to toss some money-and more specifically, time-into this!
Kakujo Jul 31, 2014 @ 3:56pm 
That's a trade secret!