Helltaker is a short indie action puzzle-solving game that was created by a well-known Youtuber vanripper. Your task is to collect several demon ladies to complete your harem by reaching them before you run out of moves. On paper, this seems like your run-of-the-mill indie title that will get a bit of shine but will eventually become a fad and forgotten. However, this game warrants more attention because of some quirky and fun things it brings to its gameplay. Let us take a closer look at what makes this game tick and why you should try it out.
Harem Scare ‘Em
From the get-go, Helltaker is a game that knows which audience to cater to–people who enjoy playing games that let you collect waifus. The game sees you control a burly man wearing a white suit. One day, he wakes up and decides to collect some sultry demon ladies for his harem, and he does so by literally going to Hell. Your objective for the whole game is to come across as many demon girls and recruit them to your harem. The more girls you get, the better your chances are at getting the secret ending.
The game is drawn in a particular comic style, with some emphasis on making the demon girls look enticing and cute. Most of the demon girls’ designs look like Skullgirls, and the dialogue you will have with them once you get to them is clever in particular bits. So much, that as you progress through the game, you get to see interesting character development for all the demon girls you manage to collect. For example, Cerberus, the Triple Demon, has three different bodies but has one collective mind. As you get to know her through your playthrough, you get to see how the dynamic of having three bodies and one mind creates various hilarious situations.
On the subject of gameplay, Helltaker places your character in different levels with a demon girl somewhere near the opposite end where you begin. You have a set number of moves that you have to take note of as you navigate through Hell’s dungeons. You can hit rocks to either move them around or punch skeleton demons to clear the path. Some stages have spikes that rise up and down depending on what your move is. If you move onto space where the spikes are jutting out, you will lose some of your available moves. This is why you need to keep in mind the number of moves you have. If you run out of them, you lose and you have to restart the level.
Helltaker’s level design comprises fun brain-teasing puzzles that increase in difficulty as you get to the later levels. In some cases, you will have to think carefully if you want to rush towards the demon girl at the end of the level, or if you should look for secrets like keys hidden in rocks that unlock treasure chests. Other levels on the other hand, require you to exercise your reflexes since you will encounter tons of falling debris that you need to avoid. This is a welcome change of pace from the puzzle-riddled dungeons.
Thumping Underworld Soundtrack
Another thing worth noting about Helltaker is its soundtrack. It goes on a loop but you won’t recognize it since it keeps a steady pulsating beat. During your puzzle runs, you won’t help but nod your head to the beat since it is extremely catchy. The sound effects are also decent, given that only one person was responsible for creating this entire game. The sound when hitting enemies and rocks are good, and the constant techno background music will get you pumped up.
In conclusion, Helltaker is a fun short puzzle game that you have to try. If you are not too keen on the premise of the game since it really caters to a specific demographic, the puzzle-solving elements of it are worth trying out. Plus, the overall presentation is commendable especially since it was created by one person. Moreover, it is free to play, so you don’t have to shell out to try it.