SuperEpic: The Entertainment War is the latest offering from Numskulll games that sees you attempt to take down an evil video game development company as the umbrella wielding, llama riding racoon, TanTan. I was fortunate enough to get a copy before release to take the platformer for a spin before release.
Disclaimer: This is a first impression as I only had 4 hours with the game due to work and puppy commitments. At point of writing, I was 32% into the main game so a more comprehensive review will follow that covers the story mode in more depth and also a review on the second gamemode.
As expected with a game in the Metroidvania genre, combat is simply hit enemies whilst not getting hit. Enemies are pretty varied and boss battles feel nostalgic as you work out their creative attack patterns (especially level 4). Combat is pretty good but did feel a little too easy with the upgrades being very affordable early game due to an idle-clicker mini game that allows you to gain ingame currency with minimal effort (more about that below). Maybe as I progress into the game new enemies will increase the difficulty curve as at the moment the story mode feels too forgiving for an experienced gamer; however, for those new to the genre it’s incredibly accessible as it gives the freedom to learn the play style. In SuperEpic’s defense, the second game mode does feel harder so I will deep dive into that for the comprehensive review.
Something that is definitely interesting with the gameplay is Numskull games’ decision to include QR codes into the game to add to their meta take on the gaming industry within the story. The games narrative surrounds Regnantcorp, a sinister games company that has made society addicted to smartphone games to leech all their money from them. In some areas of the game loot is hidden behind locked areas that can be opened by scanning a QR code which takes you to “Regnantcorp website” where you are prompted to play one of their games to unlock an access code. The aforementioned idle-clicker mechanic was quite interesting as a concept but pulled you out of the game by means that felt both connected and disconnected at the same time. However, this could heavily depend on the app used for scanning the QR code and your smartphone OS (for me it was a free QR app on the iPhone 11 Pro.)
For now, I think the game is a solid entry into the genre and I’m looking forward to putting some more hours in. My decision to delay the full review until I have ploughed more time into SuperEpic is based on how easy it is to draw comparisons to Hollow Knight, a game I have played a lot of on the same platform. SuperEpic is a charming title and on the whole I’ve really enjoyed playing it so far so I want to give it a fighting chance to make me eat my words about some of my early assumptions so watch this space.