The Games: Castle Crashers

This is a game that stayed completely off my radar.  There are two reasons for this.  One, I loved the previous Behemoth game, Alien Hominoid.  But, honestly, it is a very hard game.  And I had no one to play with.  It wasn’t online enabled, so it was like I was enjoying a game that felt like it needed other people to help with.  Castle Crashers has, thankfully, fixed that mistake.  You can play it online through Xbox Live and, let me tell you, it is an amazing experience.

First, the game.  You are a little dude that goes around and hits things.  You have some magic, but that’s it.  If you ever played Streets of Rage or TMNT: The Arcade game, then you know what I mean.  Wave upon wave of baddy charges towards you and you have to swing and dodge as best you can.  These games are amazing because that don’t take as much thought as other games.  Geometry Wars 2 has you looking at a billion different things and making really quick decisions.  Castle Crashers isn’t as stressful and more tuned towards the fun.  But, trust me, this game is more than just button mashing.

The game surprises you with its lush amount of depth.  Your character has stats (Strength, Agility, Defense, and Magic) that you can customize with experience points.  These tweaks make a real difference.  You might not be able to finish a level at first, but a few upgrades and you’ll mow right through them.  Your weapons effect your stats, as well.  Things like magic, which at first seem dull, become these amazing attacks when they are leveled up.  Plus, there are 26 different characters, who can each be unlocked and retooled. That, plus animals who help you gain items, a buying system, and other 1-ups. You never get bored.

Behemoth is still Behemoth.  This game isn’t easy.  But it is easier than their previous game.  Cannons fire at you, but you can see where they will hit, so you can adjust.  The game is less of a punishment or a test and more of a beautiful good time.  Did I say how awesome this game looks?  It is a really pretty game that takes full advantage of all the HD goodness.

The price is my only complaint.  It is 15 bucks.  I will say that the game is worth the money.  Hands down.  There are very few games online where you can have 4-player co-op of this funatude.  I think if the game was 10 dollars, more people would play it and and they sell more.  If you are on the fence, try the demo.  It might not impress right away, but you’ll think about it later.  You’ll feel the unnatural need to have the game in your digital collection.  Castle Crashers is probably one of the best games to come out this year, on the Xbox Live Market Place, or anywhere else.