Splatterhouse Review

I was scared that there would be a trend of bringing old titles and creating a huge amount of remakes, but thankfully, it appears that many developers and publishers are choosing a bit more carefully about what to bring back from yesteryear.

Splatterhouse was an old, bloody horror title before ratings became such a huge deal. Back when parents, at least mine, looked at every title before purchasing it. Needless to say, Splatterhouse wasn’t something I was able to play.

Namco Bandai brought the title back in 2010, refining the button-mashing action from a sprite-based experience to something that is missing: the somewhat un-refined button masher.

Let’s be frank, Splatterhouse isn’t a triple-A, fine-tuned, and intensely polished title. There are issues with the lack of a lock-on, graphic tearing every so often, and a strange upgrading tree that doesn’t seem to work well with the gameplay scheme.

What Splatterhouse does offer,at a M for Mature level, is button-mashing and an upgraded old school experience with a new veneer.

The story has stayed the same; RIck Taylor, a nerd who looks much more Goth this time around, is with his girlfriend, Jennifer, visiting a scientist by the name of Dr West; when he is eviscerated. With his guts spilling from his new wound, a mask promises to help him get Jennifer back, but without the mention of cost.

Taking place in the story familiar mansion, Rick has to traverse the mansion and other worlds to find Jennifer before West uses her for less than positive reasons.

Splatterhouse is a button-masher that focuses on piling large amounts of enemies in small areas and allowing players to just beat the crap out of them. WIth light and strong attacks, players can use these to combo from one enemy to another. RIck can also use finishing moves which are activated by grabbing a weaken enemy and using the analog sticks to perform many brutal moves.

Rick also uses a system similar to Wolverine: Origins where his body will show signs of damage, first by losing skin, then muscle, and finally down to the bone. It’s a cool visual, but the camera doesn’t allow for the best angles to show it off. Also in Rick’s arsenal is the ability to use limbs and body parts as weapons, so don’t miss those opportunities.

Upgrading attacks is accomplished by collecting blood from fallen enemies and trading it in for newer moves. The upgrades open new attacks and lengthen the combinations that Rick is able to perform. It works in theory, but has problems when Rick is stuck in a combo as a boss is about to attack.

Otherwise, the gameplay switches between a third-person kill-everything action title and a 2-D throwback where Rick travels on a 2-D plan through the levels. The 2-D sections are a little more annoying because many of them employ the one-hit environment kill. Normally not a problem, but the movement controls aren’t the tightest.

Splatterhouse is a repetitive display of linear combat mixing in different level designs along with boss encounters, strange enemies, and a lot of aggro, but it presents it in a great package.

There is a lot of voice acting, environment noise, and a kick-ass soundtrack; firmly placing it in the B-camp style; the title offers a good amount of mindless fun. Splatterhouse pushes enjoyment more than strategy and the story is enjoyable enough to warrant the full playthough.

With DLC already released and the ability to open the old games, it’s a total Splatterhouse package. It’s more than an average game and should be on players’ shortlists.

Better than I expected, but does have some technical problems. It’s fun though, more than worth it.



Review Copy Provided by Publisher

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