Demon’s Crystals
Gameplay 5
Graphics 7
Sound 5

Take control of one of four Urican demons and blast away enemies in this twin-stick shooter. Unfortunately, the colorful visuals and non-stop action cannot hide how shallow the gameplay is and how repetitive everything becomes after only a few rounds. The inclusion of local co-op and multiplayer modes adds some fun to the game, but there are much better options available for this genre.

Gameplay: Action-packed, but very repetitive and grindy.

Graphics: Colorful, but sometimes too chaotic for its own good.

Sound: Very average

Summary 5.7 Above Average
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

Demon’s Crystals

Developer: Byte4Games | Publisher: BadLand Publishing | Release Date: 2016 | Genre: Action / Twin Stick Shooter / Indie | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

The world in which Demon’s Crystals is set used to be a peaceful place with Urican demons living it up at the top of the food pyramid. Unfortunately for them, the arrival of three mysterious beings throws things into disarray. Not only are the once peaceful inhabitants of the world now aggressive and destructive, but the Urica demons have become the focus of their ire. It’s not much of a story, but it does give players an excuse to pick one of four Urica demons and blast everything in sight.

Demon’s Crystals is a top-down twin-stick shooter that can be played solo or with up to four friends. Players start each level with very basic firepower and must then grab the different weapons and power-ups that spawn on the map to stand a better chance of survival. These weapons and power-ups only last a very short time, so players must stay on the movie if they want to avoid enemies and grab more.

The game has a couple of different modes with “Arcade” being a good place to start. In this mode, players pick their character and then battle enemies across three worlds with nine levels each. The last level in each world is always a boss battle and each of the previous levels typically has three rounds. These rounds either require players to kill a certain number of enemies to progress or collect a certain number of crystals before a timer runs out. Along the way, players can earn experience points and level up, which increases the health bar of their chosen character. Unfortunately, that’s all there is to the arcade mode. This means that it becomes very repetitive as the game continues to bump up the number of enemies to kill and crystals to collect on each level. Players also have to redo the entire level if they get killed or run out of time, even if they managed to reach the final round.

According to the Steam Achievements for the game just over 10% of players even bother to play as far as the very first boss, which is not a good sign. This drops down to just over 5% for the second and 3% for the third. The developers clearly designed the game to be very grindy, judging by the achievements for defeating 100,000 enemies and collecting 150,000 crystals!

Outside of Arcade mode, players can try out the survival mode, complete with online rankings, which is for solo players. The game also has six multiplayer modes for two to four players with things like Deathmatch, Crystal Attack, and more on offer. These are entertaining but limited to local multiplayer only.

Visually, Demon’s Crystals looks decent, but not spectacular. The levels are all split into graveyard, castle, and forest themes, but after a while, they all just blur together. Enemies also consist of rather generic things like zombies, skeletons, and bats. To be honest, the game has a very mobile look and feel to it, which might also explain why it is so grindy. One area where Demon’s Crystals overcompensates visually is with the lighting effects, which are everywhere. While it looks pretty, it makes the already cluttered visuals even more chaotic, and spotting enemy projectiles in time can become a real chore. This is further exasperated by the rather tiny levels that cause the game to feel claustrophobic. Throw in hard to see floor traps, annoying “power-downs” that spawn all over the crystals you have to collect, and enemies that can detonate huge explosions in tiny areas and you have the perfect recipe for frustration. It is not possible to tweak the visuals either as there are only two options, namely high and low, along with the ability to set FXAA on or off.

Demon’s Crystals can be played with a keyboard and mouse or controller, but the latter is definitely the better option. Thanks to the chaotic visuals it is too easy to lose sight of the mouse cursor, which is annoying. When playing with a controller players only have to push the right analog stick in the direction that they want to shoot, which is much more comfortable than also having to hold down a button. The audio in Demon’s Crystals is present but very unremarkable. With so-so sound effects and music that will be forgotten as soon as you switch off the game, there’s nothing here that makes much of an impact.

It really is a pity that Demon’s Crystals is such a middle-of-the-road title as the twin-stick shooter genre is capable of delivering hidden gems. Unfortunately, the colorful visuals and non-stop action cannot mask the deeply repetitive nature of the game. The lackluster leveling system means that there is nothing new to aim for and even the four different characters are purely cosmetic choices with no impact on the actual gameplay. It is definitely a game that is more fun to play with friends, but even then the limitations will become very obvious very quickly. If you are a fan of the genre and don’t mind the repetitive gameplay then there’s still enough fun to be had in Demon’s Crystals to justify the relatively low asking price. For everyone else, this will be a game that they pick up once or twice and then never again.

*Review based on version 1.1.4 of Demon’s Crystals.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/8/10
  • Processor: 1.5GHz processor
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: DX9 – 256MB VRAM
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Storage: 410 MB available space
  • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/8/10
  • Processor: 2GHz processor dual core
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: DX9 – 512MB VRAM
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Storage: 410 MB available space
  • OS: OS 10.6+
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Storage: 410 MB available space
  • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 or later
  • Processor: 1.5GHz processor
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 256MB VRAM
  • Storage: 410 GB available space

Related posts

9-nine-:Episode 2

9-nine-:Episode 2

9-Nine-: Episode 2 features more of the vibrant art and excellent writing that was featured in the first installment. However, it's not quite a sequel as it instead focuses on a different heroine compared to episode 1. This can be a little annoying for players who want to uncover all the mysteries instead of just learning more about the different heroines. The game is also rather short and left us wanting more, but this is mostly due to the great character dialog and superb translation. Despite some questionable elements 9-Nine-: Episode 2 is a great visual novel and we have no qualms recommending the entire series to fans of the genre. Gameplay: Features a lot more humor compared to episode one and the writing is still superb. Graphics: The art is detailed and vibrant, although a lot of the character sprites and backgrounds are reused. Sound: Excellent voice acting, but most of the background tunes are the same.

Legacy of Dorn: Herald of Oblivion

Legacy of Dorn: Herald of Oblivion

Legacy of Dorn is a thrilling chapter in the Warhammer 4000 saga and packs a very engrossing story. The game also makes the most of the license by packing the space hulk with all the major foes. Space Marines are designed for combat and Legacy of Dorn certainly doesn’t disappoint in this regard either. It is still a gamebook though, so if you don’t like reading or expect cutting edge visuals it is better to steer clear. Everyone else should definitely let their imagination run wild with this title. Gameplay: The story is fast paced and thrilling although a little jargon heavy at times. Graphics: Atmospheric, but mostly text and not that easy on the eyes due to the color scheme. Sound: The game features no speech, but the ambient soundtrack is fitting and unobtrusive.

LOVE BAKUDAN

LOVE BAKUDAN

Love Bakudan is an 18+ yuri visual novel with a unique premise and plenty of hot women to romance. When Haruka Mishimi inherits her grandmother's erotic bookstore, she moves back to her childhood home of Akiyama where she finds a bevy of beautiful customers waiting to frequent her shop. With six unique romance routes, a fun bookselling mini-game, and plenty of optional erotic stories to unlock, Love Bakudan belongs in the library of every yuri fan. Gameplay: Six romance routes that are completely unique from each other. Graphics: Plenty of backgrounds and some nice character designs. Sound: The music is good and there's plenty of great sound effects.

A Kiss for the Petals – Remembering How We Met

A Kiss for the Petals - Remembering How We Met

Remembering How We Met is the latest entry in the A Kiss For The Petals franchise and gives English players a chance to see what all the fuss is about. It is an all ages title, so rather tame compared to other entries in the series, but this also broadens its appeal. Players looking for a sweet and romantic yuri title should definitely not miss out on this one. Gameplay: There are no choices as this is a kinetic novel. Graphics: Restricted to a 4:3 ratio, but still looks very good. Audio. Japanese voice acting along with some very nice background music.

The Legend of Tianding

The Legend of Tianding

The Legend of Tianding is a great sidescrolling action game filled with fast-paced characters, great levels, and memorable characters. Everything from the visuals to the audio is superb, and the combat remains enjoyable throughout. The game is a little on the short side, and most of the moves are unlocked right at the start instead of being spread out through the adventure, but other than that, there is very little to fault. Gameplay: Traversing the trap-filled levels is fun, but the combat really steals the show. Graphics: The game's presentation, animations, and overall art style are really good. Sound: Authentic music, sound effects, and voice acting bring this adventure to life.

The Shapeshifting Detective

The Shapeshifting Detective

Solving a murder mystery should be easy when you have the ability to shapeshift into any person you meet, but all is not as it seems in the quiet town of August. Step into the shapeshifting shoes of Sam and figure out whodunit in this latest FMV release by D'Avekki Studios. A girl has been murdered under mysterious circumstances and the clock is ticking as you put your unusual skills to the test. The Shapeshifting Detective is a solid title that will appeal to everyone who enjoys an unusual murder mystery and the story also provides plenty of replay value, so don't miss out. Gameplay: As this is an FMV game the interaction with the gameworld is obviously limited, but interrogating people is a blast and the shapeshifting mechanic makes for a novel experience. Graphics: Not as much FMV footage as Doctor Dekker, but everything looks great in high definition. Sound: The audio is superb and definitely contributes a lot to the atmosphere of the game.

Leave a comment

10 + three =