101 Ways to Die was developed by Four Door Lemon and published by Vision Games. It was released for Xbox One on March 24 for $14.99. A copy was provided to The Hidden Levels for review purposes.
101 Ways to Die is a physics and time based puzzle game about killing with flare. After a terrible explosion destroys the draft of Professor Ernst Splattunfuder’s dastardly death recipes, you are hired to locate all the pages from his book. The only way you can do this is to manipulate your environment by using the tools at your disposal to maim, explode, amputate, burn, and impale; whatever strikes your fancy, to make sure these little critters do not escape so you can collect all the pages. There are 101 Death Recipes to unlock and over 50 gory levels to annihilate the splatts.
What I Enjoyed:
Quick to pick up – The concept and game play of this game is easy to learn through an orientation training mode. Everything is explained to you and what is expected of you as Professor Ernst Splattunfuder’s assistant is explained also. The option to zoom in and out is very helpful when setting up traps as well as using different camera angles to see your terrain when placing tools. The feature of pressing “X” to speed up the splatts is nice too when you want to move a bit more quickly.
AMAZEing maps – The maps or levels start off easy and straight forward but get very intricate as you progress. There was a lot of thought that went into how these maps would work with the gamer and how they would manipulate their surroundings using the tools to destroy the splatts before they reach the exit and to complete each task for the levels.
Visually pleasing – The graphics are bright and colorful with attention to detail and texture. There is a substantial amount of fast moving color changing action which is quite pleasant to watch among the chaos. If you are queasy with blood this is not the game for you as there is plenty of it when the splatts fall victim to the grisly traps.
What I Disliked:
More than one try– Each level has a star rating system and you must complete the designated tasks in each level before moving on to the next level. This is done by collecting the necessary number of stars. This is where it gets frustrating, just when you think you have completed your task to find out that you need to play that level again to reach certain goals. For example one task may be only let one splatt reach the exit but kill the others. The next task could be play it through again but this time kill one with the ball, make sure no one leaves. Or kill one with a specific combo using multiple tools. It is a cool concept just can be frustrating to keep playing the same level over so many times before progressing.
Not enough choices – There are so many tools that are in the game but you only get to use predetermined tools for each level. I see why they do this but it would be more interesting to have a few more choices to really cause some mayhem. The notion of being more strategic is always heightened when you have multiple paths to potentially choose.
Needs more tunes – The music is definitely lacking for the type of game the music does not fit the genre. It needs to get the player a bit more amped up while playing the game. Sound is incredibly important in all games so the lacking feeling here is a bit of a let down.
101 Ways to Die is a fun game to play although it can be frustrating it is the challenge that I enjoyed. I do like puzzle games and I liked the way this game was put together. The graphics were fun and diabolical at the same time, the splatts are the focus and steal the show. Because of all the levels and tasks needed to complete, this game will keep you puzzling for hours. It is a bit more than I would pay for a game like this so I would probably wait for a sale.
Score: Wait for a sale