[PS4 Review] Flame Over
An interesting addition to the Pyroguelike genre.7.5
Are you ready to walk in the shoes of a member of one of the toughest jobs in the world? That’s right, there are some fires that need to be put out!
Blending top down ‘squirt ‘em-up’ action with Roguelike RPG mechanics, Flame Over features fast-paced fire-fighting thrills, randomly generated levels and 4 deadly game zones!
Guide firefighting hero, Blaze Carruthers, in a race against time and near-certain death! Fight through 16 floors of the Infernal Industries building, combating ferocious fires in a red-hot adventure that changes every time!
Flame Over | Launch trailer | PS4
Welcome to Flame Over, a game from Laughing Jackal that puts you in the shoes of Blaze Carruthers. Blaze is a firefighter and boy, are you going to be fighting fires!
The game itself has been described as a Pyroguelike, due to it’s similarities to the roguelike genre, with some fire thrown in for extra fun. Flame Over is an ever-changing skill-evolving game where you must save as many people as possible and put out the fires in the buildings you visit. What I thought was going to be a simple and fun game turned into one of the harder experiences I have ever played!
The goal of the game is simple. You need to put out all fires and save people. Each area is randomly generated when you enter, providing you with brand new environments and unknown challenges. You have one enemy in the game, and that is the fire that engulfs everything. You have two options for attacking it: your handy fire extinguisher or good old plain water. Regular water is effective on plain fires, but if there is black smoke emanating from the fire, then you must use the extinguisher.
You start each level with a five-minute time limit and three hearts to last you through the game. While playing, you need to you need to avoid being damaged by the fire. If you get hit by flames, you lose a heart, and if you are around heat for too long, you will also lose a heart. It’s not hard to lose all of your lives very quickly. I think one of the most challenging elements is the fire management in the game. As you put out a fire, you need to be quick, ensuring you are using the extinguisher on electrical fires to make sure they don’t start up again. The fire in the game is almost like a living and breathing organism – it will spread like crazy, and if you are not properly dousing a room, it will light back up. The fire also likes to send out projectiles at you which can also rekindle fires you have already put out, so be ready!
In all of the levels, you are going to find bystanders and cats whom you need to save. As soon as you seem them you should have them follow you to a safe room. If they stay around the fire, they will quickly die. Once you take them to the safe area, you will get an extra minute added to your timer for every person saved and an extra heart for every cat you save. What happens if you run out of time? You start to be chased by the Grim Reaper, and once he catches you, it’s Flame Over, man. The other thing to keep in mind is that you have a finite amount of resources meaning you need to use them sparingly. There are some refill stations, but they are few and far between. Nothing is worse than running out of water in the middle of a room and needing to run back to get a refill.
This game is difficult and it won’t hold your hand. I found it very daunting to jump into the game and continuously die. A Fire Drill training mode is available, but I did not find it sufficiently got me ready to play the game. This is one of those games that you will get better at as you continuously play it and screw up. Thankfully you can use earned coins from the game to purchase power-ups that will help ease the situation and turn you into an excellent fire fighter. Practice makes perfect!
The game’s art-style was a very interesting opting, going for a more cartoony approach instead of giving it a realistic go. It works as the games mechanics and fires don’t seem too realistic either. One of the bigger issues I had with the game was the camera. You need to continuously rotate to see rooms you are extinguishing from all angles. There was more than one occasion where I missed a small piece of fire hidden by the walls, and by the time I finished clearing the next room, the previous one was on fire.
There are 36 trophies in the game: 4 Golds, 10 Silvers, and a Platinum trophy. A lot of trophies will be unlocked as you play and progress, but there are some harder ones in here, including finishing the game in under one hour, save all bystanders, and get through the game without any aid from power ups. This will be a difficult, but rewarding platinum to add to your collection!
Flame Over is an interesting game that comes off as a much harder experience than the art-style will lead you to believe. As you get better at it and play more, you will get improve your skills and reaction time, but you must be willing to invest the time it will require. I could see people picking it up and getting frustrated, but this is a great pickup if you are looking for something with great replay value, and it’s $11.99 price tag won’t break the bank.
This review is based on a copy of Flame Over provided by Laughing Jackal.
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