Not every game is a AAA masterpiece or an artsy-fartsy indie joint, you know! There’s plenty of games with B-list production values that might lack marketing but could still be worth your time. We’re checking out one of those in Evil Genome; it’s a hack-and-slasher that went completely under the radar but still manages to be an interesting take on the genre despite some hiccups here and there.
Evil Genome is a side-scrolling take on the spectacle fighter subgenre that originated with games like Devil May Cry. Heroine Lachesis is capable of various combo strings mixing sword and gun attacks, while defensively she’s got a dash to get her out of a bad spot. She’s also able to expand her repertoire as the game goes on by spending points on a skill tree. Defeating enemies and exploring the world will turn up loot, allowing you to customize your character to your liking by focusing on your preferred stats. It’s not long before Lachesis is a killing machine – and she’s not too shabby from step one, really. This is a battle system you can actually learn and improve at, which is key to keeping a game like this feeling fresh.
Most of Evil Genome is all about exploring the world and taking out enemies. There’s a story revolving around Lachesis trying to recover her memories after a bout with amnesia, but, well…I’m not entirely sure where this one originated from, but it was clearly localized and that localization wasn’t done especially well. Between the questionable voice acting and the many text issues, you’ll probably want to focus on combat and managing stats more than the plot or flavor text. That’s not the end of the world when the game has solid combat like this one, but it does detract from the experience somewhat.
Likewise, the voice acting probably could have used another pass…or two…or, er, three. At least the game looks pretty good. Characters and enemies alike are designed well enough to keep one’s interest, and I’ve got a special place in my heart for games where equipped gear actually shows up on the playable character. There also seems to be some sort of physics engine working behind the scenes as human enemies tend to ragdoll and flop over comically when they’re killed. No complaints there.
Evil Genome‘s not going to rock the gaming world or anything, but it’s a completely acceptable hack-and-slash adventure if you’re willing to look past the rough spots in the localization and voice acting. Gameplay is what matters, right? Well, unless we’re talking about art games, where apparently gameplay doesn’t matter at all? You know what, just give Evil Genome a shot if you’re interested in this sort of loot-focused approach to spectacle fighting.