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‘Guns of Mercy’ Review – War Keeps Changing

TouchArcade Rating:

One of the more confusing things about analyzing games in modern times is that they can change and improve thanks to the nature of updates and digital distribution. Guns of Mercy (Free) hasn’t necessarily seen dramatic overhauls since its initial release, but it’s become a much better game, and a free download well worth checking out. This action game has you fending off endless waves of enemies, using a gun that you can aim in a 180 degree circle. One hit kills you, but shields, powerups, and a giant mecha can help you out along the way, as you fight ever more dangerous enemies and giant bosses. You collect coins, and these all go toward upgrades to help you blow up stuff better. It’s a turbo-charged shooter, and it’s worth the download just to check out, though if you’re playing now, you’re getting a changed and improved experience than those who first gave it a shot.

Guns of Mercy is one of the most colorful games I’ve ever played. The game is an explosion of color, and the various backgrounds and enemy battles take this to an almost problematic degree, as there’s just so much going on. Still, the game is so visually-pleasing. And the pixel art treads this line between looking like the modern interpretation of pixel art as looking jagged, while still having just enough detail to it to look high-resolution. But just check out the main menu screen: it’s vibrant to a point of gorgeous absurdity. This game is worth a download for the visuals alone.

The economy in Guns of Mercy is kind of like baseball stadium proposals, in that the numbers have no logic whatsoever. In the same way that the Rays wanted to charge you $500 in order to propose at the pile of scrap metal that is their stadium while a proposal at a historic, picturesque stadium is a fraction of the cost, there’s some fine upgrades that can be had for small amounts of gold, and then some items require an inhuman amount of gems to unlock. Another odd thing about the currency in this game is that the gold coins (well, they’re square blocks) are worth the least, and the bronze coins, which are the biggest, are worth the most? Whenever a big bunch of coins comes flying out, it takes a bit to get used to this, since the world pretty much decided on gold > silver > bronze a while ago. Guns of Mercy‘s developer doesn’t subscribe to your system!

Guns of Mercy is free-to-play, and I recommend making two purchases once you decide this game is for you. One is the gold doubler, which has obvious utility. The other is to buy a gem pack, enough to buy the spread gun. This weapon is Scooty-Puff Sr., the Doom-Bringer. In particular, because you have the ability to take out enemies coming at you from the floor, which is a problem with basic weapons, this helps take out a lot of other airborne enemies while dealing with those threats. It makes a big difference. Also, it just shoots a wide spread of bullets at once, it’s a powerful tool and worth the money. I suppose there’s an argument to be made about a powerful weapon being available with premium currency, but you can get an advantage with some of the cheaper weapons as well.

I’m glad to see the developer of Guns of Mercy supporting the game after the initial release. Some of the shortcomings I saw with the game at launch have already been rectified. The one free “start at your level of choice" feature was added after launch, and makes it so that you don’t have to start at the beginning every single time. It needs to be tweaked a bit more so that you don’t have to drop a ton of gems to progress in the game. But that just gets more into the strange, strange economy in this game. The game was a bit repetitive with the small number of bosses initially, but I’ve seen more added to the game, like the giant Moai head. More backgrounds have been added, and they look great, adding more to the gorgeous style of Guns of Mercy. There’s talk of new game modes, and new features being added in the coming weeks and months, so it’s quite possible that this could be a completely different game someday.

What I think is the best way to approach Guns of Mercy is that it’s great if you like mindless time-wasters. It’s a shining example of the kind of game you just can’t put down even though you know it’s repetitive. Coincidentally, I went into 2016’s hack-n-slash Smashing the Battle [appprice url="asdf"] before writing this review, and spent a couple hours while watching a baseball game on TV playing this mindless action game. It’s highly repetitive, there’s some regrettable aspects to it, but it was kind of fun to just plow through it. I think Guns of Mercy fits into that genre, where you know it’s not perfect, but you might wind up playing it a lot because there’s not a lot of commitment. Here’s the game, here’s the premise, just sit back and enjoy it as you mindlessly blast lots of enemies. I enjoy Guns of Mercy, but simultaneously I’m kinda asking myself why I like it. But, my stance is that if I’m having fun, it’s good enough.

This all might be because the core of the game is so good, that it makes it worth playing even while getting repetitive. The controls work well, and the game remains a gorgeous rainbow explosion of color. And blasting endless hordes of enemies, occasionally hopping into a robot to do even more effective blasting, is a lot of fun. Those core aspects are so good, that maybe it doesn’t matter so much if the game is repetitive or there’s a few flaws here and there. The experience itself is enjoyable enough, that while this is nowhere near a perfect game, it’s worth a download. Just, somebody help out with the translation. And I hope that in the coming weeks and months, Guns of Mercy becomes an even more fun and expansive experience. Give this one a download at the very least, and check out the forum thread where people are still talking about this one.

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