Overall 7.60
Cuphead gained wide spread attention for its old timey cartoon visual style, luckily the game is more than just a cool aesthetic. This is a boss rush games, yes they added like 6 side scrolling levels just to saybthere are some normal levels but those feel like bonus stages to the main course which are elaborate shoot em up boss battles. These fights are pretty inventive, they each have many stages with different attack patterns and incredible animation. They absolutely test your skill as pinpoint reflexes are needed for many of these. In terms of challenge cuphead is everything a hardcore shooter fan would want.

But I like my shooters to have the total package, incentive levels, great traversal mechanics on top of unique combat. Imagine Mega Man if they removed the levels and just had you fight the bosses, only they were far more complex, personally I want the level. That build up to a boss is fun, here you just skip to the end. I was surprised at the amount of variety they were able to include with such a limited game style, it's why I ended it up liking it far more than I thought I would. At first I felt this was a one note wonder, every battle just a bunch of dodging random attacks and shooting a big face. But the scenarios kept getting more and more wild, flying an airplane against a gigantic blimp of Riding a ghost train. Some bosses were semi puzzles where figuring out how to attack or survive was the key. Incredible care was taken to make each boss memorable in their own way.

And yet I wanted more. The few side scrolling levels have some of that creative juice but they are too short and never evolve. Cuphead does gain new types of shooting and abilities and these can be mixed and match before each level and boss for an added layer of strategy. I just never felt the strategy ever changed that much, once I found a good mix I pretty much stuck to it. As great as the game felt to play, the controls are perfect, I never felt it reached the highs of shooters like contra 3 or gunstar heroes.

In terms of visuals and sound it's an award worthy game. This animation is stunning, the way every single facet of the game feels like it comes from that era is extremely impressive. Thematically this is a classic. It's also a meaty game for such a simple concept, a first run with plenty of deaths will take a good 6 -7 hours and then there are rankings and difficulty modes if you want some insane tests of skill. I assume if you really love this kind of game and want to play until this game is fully mastered that it a way better game for you than it is for me.

There is no denying that this is a great shooter with a stunning aesthetic. I wish they would have gone all out and make a more traditional side scrolling shooter with full themed levels for each boss and add more skills to make the platforming an equal part of the gameplay equation. Still this is a very good game and it will be a favorite to many.

Posted by Dvader Wed, 22 Nov 2017 16:48:03
Thu, 23 Nov 2017 17:37:36
What kinda jerk could score a game that looks like this a 7.6? Good review. Sounds like it needs more of an expansive approach.
Sun, 10 Dec 2017 07:30:16
Because of the way they created the animation (by hand) that may have been too much to expect -- though they did it back in the old days with Metal Slug!
Sun, 10 Dec 2017 07:30:46
^But then they contained that with the high difficulty, just as is the case with Cuphead. Those sneaky developers!
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