• Publisher: Atlus USA
  • Developer: ACE Team
  • Release Date: 1/19/16
  • Playstation 4

From the moment that Deadly Tower of Monsters launches it promises one thing above and beyond all else, a game made out of bad 70’s style movie gimmicks, and it does nothing short of deliver, in a rather impressive display of antiquated-style graphics, tongue-in-cheek commentary, fun characters(both on-screen and off) and fluid controls. New mechanics are added into game play at a relaxing pace, and they’re always fairly easy to master. No single zone is too long or too short, and the ability to instantly travel between checkpoints made going back and exploring zones once I had cleared them astoundingly easy

As far as the game play mechanics themselves, everything flows just about the way one would expect; the button mapping is nice and comfortable, and swapping weapons and skills takes little to no conscious thought or effort, which is a welcome relief in a game with as much action as it has. Upgrading however, is a slightly different story. Performing the upgrades themselves is easy enough: For weapons, it’s a simple process of finding the right gears (the easiest of which, Blue, can actually be obtained simply by defeating enemies, Silver and Gold are rarer and are found in specific locations throughout the environment) and having gold, advancing your character level is where it gets tricky. Character upgrades come in the form of completing “missions”, a few of which you unlock automatically during the game by defeating bosses. The majority of them however require you to be a bit more creative, and kill enemies in certain ways, or completing certain side activities, none of which are marked on the map. Each mission you complete will give you one point which, combined with money, can enhance one of a few attributes. The kicker, though, is that once a point is spent, it’s gone for good; there’s no way to reset your points later if you invested in something. And with less than 30 total, each point counts, so you need to be sure to plan ahead carefully.

All in all, DToM was a blast to play, and while the replay value isn’t too strong, there are enough unfinished quests for me to want to jump back into it, and I’d love to hear some of the alternate dialogue by choosing to play as a different main character. The game’s humor and not-so-subtle tapping on the fourth wall throughout the game started are fun, and while there were points where it became more of a distraction than anything else (I found myself occasionally torn between wanting to stand still and listen to the Director’s monologue; often putting myself in danger) the entire game was truly better off for it, and at times it served as a platform for the game to make fun of itself, which it did very enthusiastically. One thing’s for sure though, with all the games that focus on the future, playing a game that makes use of the past was a breath of fresh air, and definitely an experience I’ll remember fondly.

Final Score: 9/10

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