Written by Remko Molenaar (Proxzor)
Rogue like games are always incredibly fun and remind me of a time when games weren’t as easy as they are now. Some games back in the day didn’t even allow you to save, so each play through began at the actual start and slowly but surely you would learn how to advance quicker, overcome challenges, and quickly eliminate the bosses you had so much trouble with the first couple of times. Hellmut: The Badass from Hell is another rogue-like game, a fast paced ‘bullet storm dungeon crawler’ where you can use transformation to defeat demonic hordes in an always changing battlefield.
If you’re not familiar with these type of games let me give you a quick run down. When you die, you start over. This might displease a lot of people, but there are also a ton of people like me who like the challenge of Rogue like games. One thing is for sure: when you play this game, you will die. But the knowledge you get from how to progress further into the game sticks with you, and with each play through you will crawl forward further into the game until you met the final boss. Even then it sometimes throw you right back at the start to finish the game in another way.
Hellmut: The Badass from Hell is not really anything different then the usual rogue like game. With the pixel graphics and retro style look of games, it combines a very fun genre and graphical style into a chaotic mess of dodging fireballs and other laser type textures. What makes Hellmut different is the use of transformations that you can slowly unlock the further you get into the game. You are granted immortality, but your physical body isn’t what it used to be, so you have the choice to choose between two transformations at the start. Since you current physical body is just wasted to a mere skull, but you do seem to be flying, it can be functional as a second life but the transformation you pick at the start will drastically empower you. Initially you can use the Rat King that has its own special abilities as both normal attack and special attack, or the Stitchmonster that looks like an abomination that throws axes Thor could get jealous of.
This is your goal: grinding through the levels, slowly progressing further and hoping you will have made progress after a day’s worth of playing. The transformations that you can unlock by playing more aren’t the only empowerment you can get. Monsters will occasionally drop items to strengthen you up in certain ways, and also drop coins and gems. The Coins can be used in the shop that you will occasionally find a portal for, and the gems can be used to call out for the Mighty Eye of Ka-Ra. In the shop you will find weaponry which usually have a limited amount of ammunition, armor, and utility like potions that will come drastically handy when times are sour and you’re about to face the end boss of a level with only 10 health points left.
Going through the levels, with life slowly wasting away and questioning yourself after every laser beam you managed to run in to, it becomes obvious that Hellmut is a very challenging but fun game. While the levels are very straight forward and not all too special, the monsters you encounter definitely make up for it. Combine that with the random objects scattered throughout the levels that could either blow up the enemy – or you when you’re not watching – and in no time you will discover what absolute chaos the game can turn into, and how much you’ll love every moment of it. It is very odd to say in a rogue-like chaotic game like this, but you have to take your time. Since you are thrown into the chaos straight away, and the first few stages do not hold your hand, expect a bunch of dying in your first couple of playthroughs. In no time you’ll start to love and hate the genre of what makes it so challenging. While more transformations can be unlocked by challenges, it is by no means easy to do, and even a simple challenge can give you a frustrating experience for a couple of hours.
Conclusion: Great (4/5)
Rogue like done right. The retro pixel graphics are a perfect fit for a game like this, combined with some special humor and chaotic gameplay and you got yourself the perfect combo for a game.
Hellmut: The Badass from Hell is a rogue like done well. From the graphics to the gameplay, the game is incredibly well polished and a ton of fun to do. Despite its challenges, the game feels extremely smooth and it does feel like the game is very easy to pick up, but hard to master. While dying is never fun, and having your progression reset to right back at the start may discourage you, but its a valuable lesson in life. Sometimes progression Isn’t just a straight line going up. Life is full of up and downs, and a rogue like is the perfect example as to why. You’ll learn from mistakes, adapt to the situations better, and apply that to the next time you are put in the exact same position again. While the game is a bit of a grind, and honestly which rogue like game isn’t?, it is still very fun to play. Just remember this game isn’t exactly for weaklings that care too much about not dying, this game is made for people who love slaughtering hordes of monsters, and slowly becoming better at it.
Note: A game key was provided for review purposes.