Film Editor Tom Green finds Slime 3K to be an indulgent to the roguelite genre but lacking in focus
Slime 3K: Rise Against Despot was received for free for review purposes
Slime 3K is the latest from Konfa Games, set in their shared dystopian universe where humanity has been enslaved by a malignant AI. Fittingly billed as an “unhinged roguelite bullet heaven”, you inhabit the body of a sentient globule of slime hellbent on overthrowing your creator, the Despot.
While admittedly derivative (Konfa themselves even admitting to “blatantly cloning” its contemporaries) the gameplay is simple yet satisfying. The controls are austere- you’ll only be using the standard WASD movement controls, as well as moving the cursor to aim at hordes of ‘puny humans’- the rest is done automatically, but in keeping with the roguelite genre ethos, Slime 3K is easy to learn, hard to master.
Your warpath is emboldened by the addition of a new ‘deck building’ system where cards that can be collected throughout the levels add new weapons to your arsenal. Watch as legions of tiny pink humans are eviscerated by spinning wheels of fire, giant eyeballs, scythes, electricity and explosive watermelons. While the deck building is a welcome modification to the Konfa formula, the synergies promised at the beginning are not actually borne out in the game. The ability to choose ‘decks’ is more a way of controlling what the game’s item pool is as opposed to a fully-fleshed out deck building system.
The game also puts a somewhat interesting spin on your typical roguelite by actually compelling the player to take damage (many of the ‘card’ abilities necessitate close proximity to enemies), balanced out by the frequently spawning vats of HP.
It does occasionally feel slightly stop-and-start, with the momentum of each level being sucked out by the constant need to purchase and upgrade abilities from item vending machines that pop up every few seconds, especially in the later levels when crafting a suitable deck is paramount. Given the increasing spawn rate and power of enemies, I felt compelled to spend half of each round poring over the vending machine inventories to decide which upgrades or cards I ought to pick rather than spending time where the real entertainment is (mowing down the waves of enemies).
Slime 3K doesn’t reinvent the wheel, nor was it intending to, but the game’s aesthetic is well-executed. The sprites and animations are pretty stellar; each explosion of red mist, laser beam, and malformed creation seem the product of genuine craft. That being said, the screen can often get incredibly busy so each element is hard to appreciate in the midst of its manic gameplay.
The soundtrack and SFX are fairly by-the-numbers. Slime 3K’ score is synth-tinged and intense but lacking in variation, and the same can be said of its sound design which quickly becomes stale after a couple of consecutive levels (especially the death moans of the humans).
At its peaks, Slime 3k is exemplary of all the glorious indulgence of the roguelite genre with its gleeful violence and wild, inventive methods of dispatching foes. However it often feels as though it’s undermined by a lack of thoughtful gameplay systems. The deck building feels shallow and the gameplay loop is fairly uninspired. If you’re a hardcore fan of the roguelite, Vampire Survivors-esque archetype, then check this one out.
Slime 3K: Rise Against Despot is available on Steam, PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch
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