The Culling Of The Cows
Gameplay 8
Graphics 8
Sound 8

The Culling of the Cows is an action packed arcade experience with a nice visual style. Blasting the enemies requires a quick trigger finger, but the inclusion of assists and upgrades ads a strategic element to the gameplay as well. If you can appreciate a good shooter with a rather dark sense of humor you will find a lot to like about The Culling of The Cows.

Gameplay: A challenging arcade shooter that requires some strategic thinking as well.

Graphics: Nice hand-drawn visual style with plenty of detail.

Sound: The music and sound effects match the gameplay perfectly.

Summary 8.0 Great
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

The Culling Of The Cows

Developer: Decaying Logic | Publisher: KISS ltd | Release Date: 2014 | Genre: Action / Casual / Indie / Strategy | Website: Official Website | Format: Digital Download

The protagonist of The Culling of the Cows is Sammy, a farmer with a 12 gauge shotgun and permission from God to use it on the zombie horde that is approaching his home. Initially Sammy only has to face the undead in the form of bovine brain munchers, but humans and even birds are not far behind them.

Your goal in The Culling of the Cows is simply to defend your farm and yourself from the hordes of undead bearing down on you. Sammy merely has a shotgun to defend himself with, but fortunately it can be upgraded and he can call upon a few assists as well to help out in a pinch. The game is set across 40 levels and while things start off rather sedately you will soon find yourself scrambling to survive as the challenge ramps up.

While the game has full controller support I found it to be much easier to control with a keyboard and mouse combination simply because there are so many keys. Apart from moving Sammy and shooting you also have to press a button to reload, activate a supply drop, purchase upgrades or new bullets and call in assists. These must all be done while beating back the enemies or in the short amount of time you have between waves so you really can’t dawdle or afford to press the wrong button. It only takes one hit for Sammy to buy the farm in a spectacularly gruesome fashion and you also cannot let too many enemies get past you and into the barn or it is game over. Initially the number of enemies that are allowed to slip past you before failing is quite high, but eventually you won’t be allowed to let even one give you the slip. This is no easy task considering the sheer amount of enemies bearing down on you and the tactics that they employ to make your life miserable.

The game has a decent selection of foes and like I mentioned they each have a certain movement style that you have to learn to counter. Normal undead cows will just shamble at you in a straight line, but others will charge at full speed, zigzag across the screen drunkenly or even come packed with dynamite so you can’t shoot them when they are too close. Sammy is an old guy so his movement speed isn’t the fastest which makes things challenging without even mentioning the suicidal birds that dive-bomb you from the sky in later levels.

By himself, Sammy would never have stood a chance, but luckily he has a few tricks up his sleeve. Activating a supply drop causes a random crate to fall from the sky, which may contain power-ups such as invincibility, speed boosts, unlimited ammo or bullet time. These only last a short amount of time, but can make a big difference. It takes a while before you can activate another supply drop though, so you can’t abuse this feature to win. Supply drops can also contain money, which is added to the amount you start each level with and the cash is useful for purchasing essential upgrades. You have to reload your shotgun manually, so upgrades such as more bullet slots and faster reloading times make a big difference. Different ammo types are also available for sale with my favorite being the buckshot that allows you to hit more than one target with each shot. Finally, there are the assists, which include crazy stuff like attack helicopters, nukes, napalm, giant saw blades, bombs, flaming meteorites and machine guns to really cause some damage. Like the supply drops these have to recharge before you can use them again and not all of them are available on each level.

To provide some variety the 40 levels are split up into three different types. In wave based levels enemies attack in groups and give you a few seconds between waves to catch your breath. Then there are levels which consist of one giant wave of enemies that come at you nonstop. Finally, there are onslaught levels where Sammy wisely takes up a sniper position and has to eradicate all zombies before they can get into his barn. While Sammy is safe from harm on onslaught levels and have unlimited ammo you must still shoot non-stop unless you want to lose because of enemies charging into the barn.

The Culling of the Cows uses a unique hand drawn art style for the visuals which makes all the bloody carnage look even more twisted. It is a single screen game, but the background visuals does change between levels. The designs of the enemies are brilliant and the bloody corpses of all the fallen foes remain on the ground until the level is over which is quite a sight. The audio is also rather fitting with some nice tunes and the schizophrenic ramblings of Sammy. The sound that you will hear the most is the mooing of the cows though, which has a high probability of annoying anyone around you that is not playing the game.

In total it took me about four hours to clear all the levels in the game although some of them were optional. The game features Steam trading cards, but unfortunately no achievements which could have given it a longevity boost (the game has since been updated with achievements). The developers have promised free DLC updates in the future, which is great and will definitely add more value to the game if done correctly (Update: Level badges were added to the game and are attained by completing various challenges). While The Culling of the Cows uses a rather simple concept, it does so with a lot of style and buckets of gore. The challenging gameplay is rather addictive, especially if you are a fan of fast paced arcade-like experiences.

*Review originally published in May 2014.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 7, Vista
  • Processor: Core 2 Duo
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: DirectX 9.0 Compatible
  • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
  • Sound Card: Generic Sound Device
  • OS: Windows 7, Vista
  • Processor: Quad core
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: DirectX 9.0 Compatible
  • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
  • Sound Card: Generic Sound Device

Related posts

Hatred

Hatred

If all you want is mindless killing and senseless violence you will probably enjoy what Hatred has to offer. However, it is quite a repetitive title and without the controversy not really that special. The destructible environments are nice and causing chaos is quite fun, but the game is also rather short and lacking in depth. Gameplay: Shoot everyone and blow up everything before repeating it again on the next level. Graphics: The monochrome visuals are detailed and stylish, but make it hard to see what is going on at times. Sound: Moody background music, but the protagonist sounds more cheesy than menacing.

Eye Of The Beholder

Eye Of The Beholder

As far as classic DOS era First Person Role Playing Games go you can do a lot worse than this AD&D effort. It doesn't hold your hand and isn't afraid to put up a stiff challenge, but overall it aged well and still offers hours of enjoyment. Gameplay: Challenging but also entertaining and addictive. Graphics: All things considered, not bad. Sound: Very limited music and feeble sound effects.

Nihilumbra

Nihilumbra

Nihilumbra is one of those games that is hard to put down once you start playing. The stylish hand painted visuals along with some excellent creature designs give the game a visual flair of its own while the brilliant narration and moody soundtrack sucks you into the gameworld. Things start off deceptively easy but, once you unlock Void mode, you better be prepared to put all your skills to the test. Gameplay: A charming mixture of platforming and puzzle solving. Graphics: The hand painted visuals are stylish and enhances the atmosphere. Sound: Brilliant narration and a moody soundtrack.

Mystik Belle

Mystik Belle

Mystik Belle features an addictive blend of classic platforming, Metroidvania inspired exploration and a healthy dose of point & click adventure style puzzles. The beautiful pixel art visuals are a definite plus and the charming characters as well as varied locations will keep you hooked. The puzzles and limited inventory might not appeal to players looking for a more traditional Metroidvania style platformer, but Mystik Belle is definitely worth checking out. Gameplay: Tons of areas to explore, lots of clever puzzles and some huge bosses to defeat. Graphics: Beautiful pixel art visuals with large, detailed sprites and memorable backgrounds. Sound: Features a catchy chiptune soundtrack.

EPOCH

EPOCH

Mobile titles usually don't fare very well on PC due to their simplicity or lack of options, but Uppercut Games have done a good job sprucing up EPOCH for its Steam release. The improved visuals and responsive controls make it more than just a quick port and the arcade style gameplay is perfect for killing some time between more in-depth titles. While the campaign can be completed rather quickly, there is plenty of replay value and the endless Arena mode also provides some more longevity. Gameplay: Third person shooter stripped down to its most basic elements. Graphics: The Unreal 3 engine is used to provide some nice visuals. Sound: Decent, but not particularly memorable.

Sakura Nova

Sakura Nova

The setting and characters are all good, but nothing ever happens to really make you care about either. The game does feature a free patch to add back all the censored content, so anyone looking for a nukige title will probably enjoy Sakura Nova. Unfortunately, those looking for a memorable story or plan on playing without the patch are likely to be disappointed. Gameplay: There are choices to be made and three different endings, but the story is a bit lacking. Graphics: Like other titles in the Sakura series the visuals are beautiful, but static. Sound: Not much to say about the music, but the voice acting is pretty good.

Leave a comment

1 × 2 =