I still haven’t beaten this game, but it’s a damn lot of fun. Essentially, it’s a procedurally generated rougelike (a bunch of words I usually avoid like the plague) twitch-shooter (two words I’m very much fond of!) and strangely, they go together pretty well! You’re simply dumped in the game with one objective: “Reset the mainframe.” Unfortunately, the electrician who installed it left it behind eight rooms of deadly enemies and two bosses. Bloody typical. Edit: I went into the game to get a screenshot of Level 1 and forgot I was at Level 4. I then continued and won for the first time!
Meet your new best friend. This snub-nosed revolver is your primary problem solving device. You start with six bullets (and three bombs that I always forget to use) as you tentatively make your way through the first room. Bullets have infinite range, instakill all enemies and can be retrieved after being fired, hence bullets are your most valuable resource! You can spam them as fast as you like, but risk having to fetch them from a potentially dangerous uncleared area, so aim and trigger discipline are important. At least at the start, you can buy extra bullets from shops as you progress!
Money from defeated enemies can be spent or saved depending on the shops you find in the level. There’s a bank, a medical unit and a weapon shop. You can tell by the giant coin, pill or bullet above them. These will obviously come in very helpful, so keep an eye out for them. They can also be destroyed by explosives. Banks will always drop $10 while the others have a chance of dropping something useful. Both coins and bullets never disappear and will bounce in place, bleeping and booping as they do, making a loot covered area sound like a malfunctioning Game Boy.
It’s a small touch, but one of the things I love in Heavy Bullets is that when you kill an enemy, the basic shapes that form it burst all over the place littering the environment permanently. It’s awesome to clear a tough room and look back at the carnage that was once the enemies you laid waste to. Especially since you have to be so careful. You can’t really run’n’gun in Heavy Bullets. It’s a lot of slow corner peeking and then intense bursts of action, as enemy sight lines you bump into alert the enemy into sprinting after you. Provided they have legs and aren’t a turret, that is.
Seriously, health is incredibly expensive and hard to come by, so being able to carry duplicates of a single item is a godsend. Though, (and I wish I’d learnt this earlier.) if you hold your Use key, you can drop your current item. Meaning you can go back and forth throwing items along the level, until you can either sell one or buff yourself to carry more or find a backpack. Also, be warned that a laser grid will block you from backtracking too far. So if there’s something valuable, take it with you or you might not get the chance to return to use/sell it. Again, I learnt that the hard way.
By the way, if you pick this awesome little game up, I’d massively advise reading the STEAM guides on items and monsters. Or at least checking it as you need it. Some items are incredibly confusing or the descriptions are insanely vague, so the guide helps out a tonne. Personally, I only decided to read the monster guide on the final boss after dying to it as I felt it would be cheating beforehand. Having that information available to you can make your chance of survival a lot higher. It’s fun to experiment at early, just, not so much when you’re an hour into a run only to accidentally kill yourself.
It’s fast-paced, slow-paced, calm, chaotic, stressful, wonderful fun. Just don’t blame me when you’re up in the early hours, praying the exit hatch is around the next corner with the low-health chime ringing in your ears.