Morphies Law: Remorphed
Thanks to games like Overwatch and Fortnite, online shooters have become a little more colorful and inventive in recent years. Unfortunately, it has also meant that most players have flocked to the big titles, which has left very little room for smaller releases, especially from indie developers. This is not an issue that is unique to the PC either as console owners are also spoiled for choice these days when it comes to online shooters.
All of this meant that when Morphies Law, a unique 3D shooter from independent developers Cosmoscope GhmH, arrived on the Nintendo Switch, it failed to capture the attention of the Splatoon 2 and Fortnite crowds. It also didn’t help that the game suffered from a couple of pesky issues that overshadowed all the unique features that it had to offer. Thankfully, the developers paid attention to comments and criticism from the community and went back to the drawing board. The result is Morphies Law: Remorphed, a brand new update to the game that addresses all the issues while making the whole experience more enjoyable. While it was released as a free update to all existing Nintendo Switch owners, the developers also took the opportunity to release the game on Steam for PC owners to enjoy. Best of all, the game supports crossplay, which means PC and Nintendo Switch owners can battle it out against each other.
The premise of Morphies Law: Remorphed is that two teams of Day of the Dead style robots are battling each other for supremacy while a large avatar for each side watches over the matches. The unique twist is that the robots consist of eight different body parts that can shrink or grow over the course of each match. This growth is not random either, but based on where you shoot your foes or where they hit you. So, if you hit someone in the head, then your Morphie will sport a larger head while your target’s head shrinks. The same goes for arms, legs, hands, feet, chests and even butts of the Morphies. The result is not only extremely freakish looking Morphies, but the size changes are not just cosmetic either as they have a direct impact on your actions.
Morphies Law: Remorphed is viewed from a 3rd person perspective, so you can see exactly how bizarre your character looks. This perspective also makes it easier to admire all the customization that you can lavish on your robot. The game features a shop where you can buy everything from antennas and instruments to face parts, body parts, emotes and intros for your character. Thankfully, these can all be purchased with the in-game currency that you earn from simply playing the game, so there is no worries about micro-transactions. More parts can also be unlocked by smashing the piñatas you earn through leveling up your character or completing the daily challenges. There is a ton of options to choose from and it’s always fun to see what kind of weird combinations your online opponents have come up with for their Morphie.
The developers really went to town with the whole Day of the Dead theme of the game, so not only are the Morphies extremely colorful, but the levels as well. The game features double the amount of maps that were included in the original release and all of them have unique features to make them more interesting. For example, Fan Antonio is a colorful town with lots of fans that can help or hinder you depending on your size, while Maztec Temple has a ring at the center that rotates as you run around on it. Then there’s Morphie Saloon, a Western town where standing on buildings causes them to sink into the ground and it’s counterpart, Fiesta Elevadora, which starts out completely flat until the buildings begin to rise out of the ground. One of our favorites is La Buttrocketeria, a nighttime map with plenty of buttrocket fuel canisters floating everywhere, which is perfect for aerial sniping. Navigating a level is different depending on the size of your Morphie, which is also a neat touch. A small Morphie might be able to quickly scurry through gaps to get to cover or activate a trap that passes harmlessly over their head to hit a much larger Morphie.
Although it was originally a Nintendo Switch release, Morphies Law: Remorphed hasn’t skimped on visual options for PC players. In addition to being able to adjust the resolution and choose between fullscreen, window and borderless window modes, players can also adjust the graphics quality, antialias quality, and field of view. Other visual options include enabling vsync and capping the fps. The game also features extensive sound options, so you can adjust all the individual volume levels to your liking or disable them completely. Finally, players can customize the controls for the game.
It really is a pity that most players will dismiss Morphies as yet another indie online shooter as the game has plenty to offer for those willing to give it a chance. The original release appeared to have suffered from some issues when it came to playing online, but the developers have rectified this with plenty of dedicated servers. We still encountered some occasional lag spikes while playing, but most matches ran pretty smoothly. We also didn’t have any trouble finding online matches to join, even if some of them included a bot or two to even out the teams. Speaking of bots, they can be used for offline practice or you can play against them online as a team. The difficulty of the bots can be adjusted and while they are nowhere near as fun to defeat as real opponents, they are capable of putting up a good fight.
The best part of Morphies is the growing and shrinking body parts and, as we mentioned earlier, this is not just a visual gimmick. Since players who do well grow larger and slower while beginners end up smaller and faster, it also serves as a neat way to keep the game balanced. It’s almost a pity that matches are so fast and frantic as there are real advantages to targeting specific body parts on your opponents. For example, growing the size of your right arm increases your weapon accuracy, while larger legs means increased height while jumping. Or, if you enjoy boosting around with your buttrocket, which is activated by holding down the jump button, then you’ll want to make sure your Morphie has a large butt. You can even speed up your Morphie by growing its feet, but shooting a fast moving opponent in the feet is not exactly the easiest thing to accomplish. We found that most matches usually involves players on both sides frantically shooting at each other instead of really targeting specific body parts, so you generally end up with random advantages depending on where you managed to hit someone.
Morphies has more to offer than just oddly shaped body parts too. The game even features different plugins for each of these body parts. Equipping and then activating these plug-ins serve as a type of special attack during rounds. So, you could opt for a “Cranial Impact” head plugin if you want to charge headfirst into your surprised enemies or, if you prefer a more acrobatic approach, you can equip a “Sticky” hand plugin to zip around the levels like Spider-Man. Then, there are the weapon creation aspect of the game that allows you to further customize your playing style. As you level up your character you can unlock new weapon parts and combining a “base” part with a “Beef it up” part results in one of the 77 available combinations. Whether you prefer a long range assault or enjoy destroying your enemies up close, you’ll be sure to find a perfect combination for your style. You can be sensible and equip your close range shotgun with a bullet blocking umbrella secondary or throw all caution to the wind and equip your sniper rifle with a rocket launcher, the choice is yours. Mixing and matching plug-ins and weapons is also great for taking on specific roles in your team. This means that if you prefer playing as a healer you can use the “Share the Love” plugin to attach yourself to allies in range to top up their oil while also healing them or equip the “Slippery Splat” secondary on your weapon to create oil puddles that can heal friends or help increase their damage. The game allows you to eventually save up to four loadouts, so you can have something ready for every occasion.
Morphies is definitely a game that doesn’t take itself very seriously, but that is what makes it so much fun. You don’t have to worry about bullets as your guns have unlimited ammo, but don’t hold down that fire button too long or the weapon will overhead and you’ll have to wait until it cools down. The levels on the other hand are small and surrounded by bottomless chasms to fall down if you are not careful, but this ensures that there is never a dull moment during the short and action packed matches. Each match features two giant avatars overseeing things and the team with the biggest avatar at the end of the match are the winners. Being the winner also comes with the satisfaction of seeing your avatar punching the head of your opponent’s avatar. In terms of game modes, Morphies Law has four to choose from. First up is “Morph Match,” where the total mass of team members combined is all that matters. This means that it is pretty much a straight-up team deathmatch where you and your allies wreck your opponents as much as possible. Head Hunt, on the other hand, is a version of capture the flag where you need to grab the only giant avatar head on the level and take it to your team canon to charge. Once fully charged it is shot up to your avatar for victory. The twist is that the head is extremely heavy, so you preferably want a strong Morphie to carry it to your canon while the rest of the team defends them. Next up is “Mass Heist” where teams can steal mass directly from the giant avatar of the enemy team. This can only be done by standing on special switches that disables its shield and then you still need to make it back safely to a mass altar to give it to your own avatar. These altars change every few seconds, and you need to strike a balance between stealing mass from the enemy avatar while also preventing your opponents from doing the same to yours. Last up is “The Masster” where only the biggest Morphie in the game will be able to grow the giant avatar. The downside to this privilege is that all the enemies can see exactly where the Masster is and destroying them grants the opposing team all their mass.
Morphies Law: Remorphed is not quite as polished or balanced as other online shooters on the market, but it is definitely a lot of fun and well worth checking out if you want to experience something unique for a change. There is no excuse not to try it out either as the developers opted for a rather innovative way to deliver a demo as well. Players can play all of the online modes completely free with the catch being that after 30 minutes all the sound effects will become extremely… well flatulent. You can then purchase the game if you enjoy it, unlock the rest of the game piecemeal as you try it out, or simply continue playing with the flatulent sound effects if they don’t bother you! It’s not often that we see something innovative or unique when it comes to online shooters, but Morphies definitely managed to capture our attention and continued to hold it, so don’t miss out.
- OS: Windows 7/8/10 (64-bit OS required)
- Processor: AMD FX-4350, 4.2 GHz / Intel Core i5-3470, 3.20 GHz
- Memory: 4 GB RAM
- Graphics: Radeon HD 6870, 1 GB / GeForce GTX 650 Ti, 1 GB
- DirectX: Version 11
- Network: Broadband Internet connection
- Storage: 2 GB available space
- Sound Card: DirectX compatible soundcard or onboard chipset