Who doesn’t love a good twin-stick shooter? Back in the days of dingy arcades with questionable old men hanging around near the toilets (or is that just a Welsh thing?) twin-stick shooters were the staple of many an arcade-goers diet.
Back in those days it was the industry giants pumping out twin-stick shooters into arcades. These days most have abandoned the arcades in favour of consoles, PC, and mobile phones. So, it’s down to the plucky indie developers to keep the genre alive, for better and for worse.
Unfortunately I’ve played my fair share of duds in recent years, but I’m happy to say that Riddled Corpses EX isn’t one of them. In fact, it’s become my go-to game when I’m looking for a quick fix – though, to the dismay of my partner, I’ve been known to hole away in a corner of the room and play for a good couple of hours. It’s just so… more-ish.
The game’s premise is about as run-of-the-mill as they get: It’s the end of the world and you need to kill as many bastard enemies as you can to survive. And it’s punishing.
You start off relatively weak with some pitiful weapons that just about do the job. Thankfully the ghoulies you take out are known to carry cash (because video games) and you can collect it and spend it on upgrades for your various characters. This means that every new run is a little easier, though it’s definitely a bit of a grind. I suppose I don’t mind, really, as I typically only play for a shot amount of time anyway, and it reminds me of one of my other favourite PS Vita time-killers: Flame Over. But let’s not get distracted.
aesthetically, I can’t say Riddled Corpses EX stands out. It’s going for that retro 8-bit inspired look – and it nails it, to be fair, but it’s just not my cup of tea. That being said… I’m still playing daily, so that says something about the gameplay. It’s fun, it’s challenging, and at times it’s downright fucking infuriating, yet I’m still chipping away. As I sit here at my day job, pretending to be doing important office work, I’ve got my laptop in front of me and my PS Vita to the side, waiting for when I next go for a ciggy in the sun.
Despite what this review would have you believe, Riddled Corpses EX isn’t a PS Vita exclusive – it’s playable on PS4, too. I’ve played a bit on the PS4, but honestly, this is the kind of game where portability keeps it fresh, and the intimacy of having the game’s screen inches away from your face (play sensibly, folks) keeps you wanting to have just one more go.
Audio work is sublime, too, and I’d be an arse if I didn’t give it a shout out. Everything from the funky tunes – some of which are new to this version of the game – to the sound effects just gels. Nothing feels out-of-place, even though we’ve all been on the zombie-hunt before.
I’m struggling to find a bad thing to say about Riddled Corpses EX if I’m being honest. I guess the difficulty could be off-putting to some, but the challenge is half the fun, and there’s something very rewarding about going back to a boss battle – once you’ve upgraded your characters and gear – and then mopping the floor with the ugly sod.
Riddled Corpses EX PS4/PS Vita Review
Riddled Corpses EX doesn’t re-invent any genres, it’s not going to be taking bags of awards home, and it’s not for everyone. But for those of us who are gluttons for punishment and one-more-go gameplay, there’s not much that can go wrong with Riddled Corpses EX.
Review Disclaimer: This review was carried out using a copy of the game provided by the publisher. For more information, please read our Review Policy.
Reviewed using original PS Vita and PS4 Slim.
Chris has been writing about gaming news for far too long, and now he’s doing it even more. A true PlayStation know-it-all, Chris has owned just about every Sony console that ever existed. Trophies are like crack to this fella. (Bronze trophies, that is – he only has one Platinum.)