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Review: Hell Pages (Nintendo Switch)By Ofisil At 25.07.2022 18:55

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Hell Pages has you playing as a sort of insectoid demon or something, who must kill other demons and monsters, and then slay the big bad boss at the end of each stage. There's possibly a story in here lost somewhere, but yours truly has lost all recollection of it. This is just a straightforward horizontal shmup like many others - and that's the first problem with it. This simply doesn't try to offer anything new.

You move around, shoot a barrage of projectiles, and avoid the critters that come towards you, along with the projectiles of their own. You get to power up your weapon a couple of times (with small noticeable difference), and there's also a screen-cleaning super move that can be used up to three times. There's nothing aside from that. No obstacles, and no interesting features you could interact with, like destroyable objects or whatever. You just move right and wait for boring wave after boring wave of monsters to come towards you, with the journey towards the level boss feeling like it takes too long.

This has a bit of a "beginner" look and lack of polish to it. Visually it's like those dime-a-dozen Flash games from the distant (yes, fellow gen-xers and millennials, distant) '90s, which is a polite way to say that it's kind of ugly, although it does have some sort of weird, super-indie charm. What isn't that charming is how the various sprites tend to blend with the background, making it hard to see what is going on, especially when it comes to incoming fire, which is not a small flaw here, as Hell Pages is quite tough.

The challenge is high, but unfortunately not because it requires skill. Apart from the fact that it's hard to see projectiles (or even enemies), it's also difficult to avoid them because you don't get enough time to do so. Bosses are particularly annoying as their attacks are much more massive, so the whole thing becomes a game of memorization. Medusa Head just didn't try enough. A great example is the shop between the levels. Here the hero can spend coin to buy stuff, but said stuff is comprised of a health re-fill, an extra continue, a save point, and nothing new whatsoever. Oh, you can also buy the sexy succubus shop assistant… which simply shows a picture of her with her puppies out. Yay?

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Final Score
'Mundane' is the word that perfectly describes this horizontal shooter. [i]Hell Pages[/i] is way too basic in what it offers and isn't even that good at it. Simply put, the genre is choke full of alternatives, at the same, or even lower price, so there's no need to play this.

4

/10

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