Crimsonland Review: Kill everything... again and again and again
A mindless killing machine. That's what Crimsonland is about -- making you a mindless killing machine.
There's not much more to the game made by 10tons. It's a top-down twin-stick shooter that has you slaying hordes of enemies with an array of weapons across two game modes: Quest and Survival. The thing is, the Quest mode doesn't actually feature any particular objectives for you to achieve, and every level plays like Survival.
The concept is basic but enjoyable in short spurts, which I'm convinced is how the game is meant to be played. You control movement with the left stick, aim with the right, fire with the right trigger, and reload with the left trigger or X. The only problem I had with the controls is the sensitivity of the Vita's sticks. Aiming is a nightmare, and some of these weapons require a lot of precision. I found that using the touchscreen to shoot was better for me. Just tapping on the screen will fire a shot, while keeping your finger on the screen will keep firing.
The visuals are also bland and saturated. All of the enemies kind of look and act the same, whether they're bugs, monsters or lizards. Some take more damage or move faster than others, but there's not a ton of variety. There's even less variety in the environments. If you're just going to have me be doing the same thing over and over, I at least need some change in the environment, not just a change in color palette. Throw in some debris that blocks enemies or something. It needs more variety, and after hours of playing, I haven't had any variety in the environment. That said, what the enemies and environment lacks in variety, the weapons and perks make up for. There's tons of weapons and perks, both of which you unlock by playing through the Quests. The Quests have a star system that you can earn, but it never really tells you what the objective is.
Survival mode is really the meat and potatoes of Crimsonland. Survival mode branches out into other modes, actually: Rush, Blitz, Weapon Picker and Nukefism. Each mode adds a little wrinkle into Survival, giving it the variety I crave. Survival leads directly into Leaderboards, which is where players' competitive spirits will feast.
That's really all there is to Crimsonland. It is, like I said, mindless killing, but it's fun in short periods of time. The strength of the game is the sheer amount of weapons and perks that will add much-needed variety to the gameplay. And while I didn't particularly care for Quests, the Survival mode is strong and where you'll spend most of your play time. It's not a game I'd play for more than 20 minutes at a time, but on a quick ride somewhere, sure.