Slayin’ Review (iOS)

Remember back in the late eighties and early nineties when games had rock solid difficulty levels. Completing a game required skill, patience and not turning the console off – for games with no save function. The folks at FDG Entertainment, and Pixel Licker want to transport us back to that time with their latest effort Slayin’.

Slayin’ is an endless action RPG for iOS devices – it is also available for free on PC. Players are tasked with killing as many monsters as possible while trying to keep themselves alive. Sound easy? Well it isn’t. The screen is swarming with enemies and traps all trying to put you in your grave. Knowing when to jump and dodge opponents is the key to survival. Timing is everything in Slayin’.

The default Knight character attacks by running sword-first in to monsters. Let your character come in to contact with enemies and you will lose some of your life bar. Killing monster yields coins which can be traded for new weapons, armour and health replenishing items. These can be purchased from stores at the end of each level or if one appears in the middle of the level.

As well as coins, you will collect fame points. Fame points can be used to buy a whole host of unlockables. New character classes, game modes and controller skins can all be unlocked in the tavern area. Fame Points can also be bought as an in-app-purchase.
Beneath the cutesy, retro-inspired graphics lays a tough nut to crack. Slayin’ is no pushover. Chances are you will die many times before you see the final dragon boss. Dying erases all progress and you will restart the game with no equipment at level one. Luckily there are a number of quests to undertake to keep interest piqued and frustration at bay.

Quests range from killing bosses within a certain time limit, reaching a certain level without jumping, and killing monsters before they can attack you. Fame points are awarded for every quest completed.

Unlocking both the wizard and Knave characters will prolong the fun. Both classes require different strategies to the knight and they have their own quests for you to complete.

The music is 8-bit in style and a joy to listen to. Often I found my head nodding back and forth to the beat of the high tempo soundtrack.

The only criticism that can be made of Slayin’ is that it is incredibly simplistic. While players will have to devise strategies to stay alive and know what to spend their coins on, there is absolutely no depth to the game. The same could be said of another FDG published game – Roar Rampage – but that game was still excellent.
Despite its lack of depth, Slayin’ is worth picking up. The game lends itself well to short bursts of play and there is a reasonable amount of content to unlock. In-app-purchases don’t intrude on the gameplay and it is easy to get by without them. If you enjoy a challenge and have a spare 69p, pick Slayin’ up from the Appstore.