Metal: Hellsinger's preview got my heart pumping.
At first glance, the Doom influence is evident. Gory executions that heal you, an arsenal of demonic weapons, and forsaken locales swarming with demons. But while Metal: Hellsinger also features a heavy metal soundtrack, it offers a tool that tilts the demon-slaying field.
This game lets you slay to the beat.
Metal: Hellsinger dials up the chaos by empowering your weapons when fired to the rhythm. Keep up your flow and your attacks become more powerful. Hearing the music ebb and flow to attacks dealt and taken made me feel powerful but not immortal. Even dodges and reloads were more effective when performed in sync with the music.
It takes a while to get used to this running riot of a game.
Sprinkled with ideas from the best shooters in the business, Metal: Hellsinger is equal parts music and mayhem.
The game's esoteric soundtrack serves as the bloody icing on the hellish cake
Scored by iconic composer duo Two Feathers, the game's tracks elevate its tight gameplay and lend it a vicious dance-like tempo. Appearances from heavy metal stalwarts like Serj Tankian (System of a Down), Alissa White-Glüz (Arch Enemy), Matt Heafy (Trivium) and Randy Blythe (Lamb of God) flesh out the game's solid score. I couldn't help but smile as I cut greater demons to the bone in tune with heavy metal rhythm.
I loved listening to artists playing to their strengths.
Weaving through demons with a shotgun for a paintbrush felt like art too.
Once you settle into Hellsinger's frenetic pace, you begin to appreciate the game's refined core. Weapons are appropriately chunky or lithe and peppering demons with holes fills one with determination to stick to the beat.
Rank up your skill multiplier with consistent timed attacks and the game possesses you with an infective frenzy. Your skill multiplier isn't just a fancy statistic.
Metal: Hellsinger tracks your score based on how effectively you wreck havoc upon the stage's mortally challenged cast. Death isn't the end; you can trade a portion of your score to continue the fight. Final scores populate a global demon-butchering leaderboard.
But not all of it is a dream run.
Metal: Hellsinger doesn't always stick its beat-based landing
There were segments where I could snipe enemies and objectives (destructible crystals) from a distance. While this doesn't have to be discouraged, Metal: Hellsinger is at its best when its demons are within striking distance. It's too early to assume that Hellsinger won't have sniper rifles, after all.
While the preview's tight arenas didn't prove too chaotic, focusing on timing while chewing through demonic hordes might be difficult on larger missions.
And I'm still not sure if me missing the beats is a latency issue.
The preview offered a satisfying glimpse of some of the game's weapons, complete with special charge-up abilities and unique rhythm patterns. A sampling of the game's many demons and a tense boss battle show plenty of promise. Minor performance and pacing issues aside, Metal: Hellsinger is a shooter experience both familiar and blood-red bold.
Hold on as I look for Metal: Hellsinger's blood-pumping soundtrack.
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