Game Review #482: Unepic (Nintendo Switch)
  • Allan Jenks

Game Review #482: Unepic (Nintendo Switch)

Reviewer: Robert Krause


Developer: Francisco Tellez de Meneses (@unepic_fran)

Publisher: Francis Cota

Category: Role-Playing, Metroidvania

Release Date: 12.15.2017

Price: $9.99


Trailer


Buy Unepic from the Nintendo Switch eShop here.


Beam Me Up, Number One

Being teleported into a D&D dungeon crawl while trying to take a leak is probably the second scariest thing that can happen to you on a toilet—see the movie Ghoulies II for the first.



Unepic is a 2-D Metroidvania-like RPG with more pop culture references than you can shake a light saber at. The game basks in its ridiculousness and humor. You play as Daniel, a sarcastic nerd who takes a bathroom break during a D&D game with friends and finds himself teleported into a dark castle filled with horrors and characters on the edge of someone getting a cease and desist letter, all of which he thinks is just a drunken hallucination. Early into the game you get possessed by a plot device... I mean, evil spirit… that taunts you along your way, waiting for you to die so it can take over your body. As you venture through the game unlocking new areas and picking up rare armor and weapons, you eventually are given the mission to kill the Lord of the Castle, which requires killing bosses throughout the castle to unlock the final level.



Dungeons, Dragons, and Drunken Debauchery

The game’s basic controls are the same as most Metroidvanias: your standard jump and attack. What Unepic does differently is that it makes use of the L & R buttons to provide sub-menus for you to equip abilities and weapons. You’re going to want to take advantage of this with as much variety as possible. Like most D&D-based games, different monsters have different weaknesses, as do even the barrels you break. The game also doesn’t provide a slow down or pause while you swap out weapons in real time, so you’ll learn quickly to maximize your weapons menus and potion slots. Equipping your halo to one of these is essential to provide a quick getaway and teleport to the save block.



Throughout your adventure, you’ll stumble across various NPC shops and crafters. Apart from the initial meeting that can provide you important progress upgrades, I only found myself visiting them to sell off the junk I collected, as the chests and barrels are plentiful enough in the game to give you upgrades and miscellaneous potions or scrolls. Traversing the map is easy, as there are numerous ladders and easy jumps to make it to the next level—just be sure to light EVERY torch and wall sconce so nothing sneaks up on you! You’ll spend most of your time searching for keys, or the bosses that have them, to unlock gates that let you quickly move from area to area.


The combat can be challenging, as you will need to switch out weapons quickly to take out ranged or melee attackers. As you level up, you get 5 points to add to individual skills, making you do more damage with a certain weapon type or upgrade different abilities. The game also has mini achievements for killing monsters, exploration, and crafting. This doesn’t provide any benefits, but who doesn’t like to get achievements?



Audio/Video

Even for an 8-bit game, Unepic is very bland visually, with most areas looking the same and only a few areas that don’t seem copy and pasted. Playing on a small screen is not ideal, as the font for items is very small. The game has a zoom in and zoom out option, but even zoomed in, you can barely see aspects of the game, like traps. I definitely recommend playing this docked on the big screen. The soundtrack is decent, but forgettable—I had to go back and listen to it again just to remember any of it.


Wrapping Up

Unepic is a fun, lighthearted, and somewhat challenging game that suffers from a rather dull aesthetic, and on the Switch screen, details that are almost too small to see. The humor is rather cheesy, but the game knows, and makes fun of itself for it. The story lasts about 20 hours, but it will probably be closer to 25 if you take your time and search for everything. It also has a Dragon, and all games with dragons get a +1.


Score: 7/10


Buy Unepic from the Nintendo Switch eShop here.


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