Reviewed on Xbox One X; Also available on PlayStation 4 and PC.
Got a lot of friends? Yeah, you probably won’t have after you have played this…
Guilt Battle Arena is a frenzied 2D local multiplayer/couch co-op game that is sure to ruin friendships. The point of the game is, as you probably can imagine, to deplete your opponents HP to 0 by shooting them. The catch? You only have 1 bullet, which you actually have to pick back up after firing your weapon. Which makes for some extremely hectic gameplay; Picture it. You’re all jumping around scrambling for that bullet, who will get to theirs first? What if everyone else has their bullet before me? Surely that means I’m done for?
There are 2 modes to choose from here; Versus and Co-op. Both self explanatory. Co-op is the only mode in which you can play alone which was a little disappointing. It would have been nice to have the option to put bots on for those times when you don’t have friends around and still like to play.
The gameplay itself is really fun and simple. Only a few buttons to remember; Shoot, jump, double jump and dash. It’s that simple. Obviously, whilst there are another 3 people trying to shoot at you it isn’t that simple to play. I often ‘panic press’ where I will press any and all buttons to try and get myself out of a certain situation which often ends up getting me killed and I found myself doing this a lot whilst playing with friends which made for a lot of laughs at my expense. All good fun.
The co-op mode I found myself playing a lot more due to the fact I could actually play this alone, this mode is a little different to versus. Each level has a different ‘objective’ whether that be surviving for as long as possible or staying away from chickens, yep, I didn’t make that one up. All whilst having to defeat or avoid (depending on what you would rather do) waves of enemies. Killing the enemies though is the only way to earn points which determines what ‘star’ you achieve. 1, 2 or 3 stars, and trust me, getting those stars aren’t easy to say the least. As the waves getting higher and higher, the game gets more difficult, making the enemies move faster and by adding more and more of them to defeat or dodge.
There are roughly 50 different characters to unlock and play as in the game and although it isn’t clear how you actually unlock these characters it’s still pretty cool that there are so many to choose from when you eventually unlock them. It’s also good to note that these characters don’t provide you with any different stats or abilities, just purely cosmetic which is a shame.
Sadly, that’s about as much as there is to Guilt Battle Arena.
Graphics & Sound
The look of this game is what I really love most. The art style reminds me of the likes of Castle Crashers, which I love. It has vibrant colours that stand out, quirky backgrounds and whimsical character design. It’s all so cute and charming, my favourite combination.
Each level is graphically different to the last, which is great. I can’t stand it when a game basically just ‘copies and pastes’ a level. It just makes it feel like lazy level design. Not the case here, you can definitely tell a lot of time and effort has gone into the design.
The soundtrack is pretty basic which is not surprising; it’s a party game, it doesn’t need an amazing soundtrack, right? It doesn’t need to set the mood for a pinnacle story moment. It just needs to be fun and bouncy, which it is. The music suits the game, what more can I say?
Guilt Battle Arena is an entertaining, fun filled bundle of joy. It is the perfect game when you have friends around and you want to prove once and for all who is the boss.
I would’ve really liked to have had more solo options and for that reason I would say if you very rarely have friends around or you prefer to play games alone, then it may be wise to give this one a miss. However, if you’re a fan of the party game genre then you oughta give this a go. It will not disappoint.