Bugs Must Die Preview – Retro inspired goodness

This title is currently in development and is set for release later in 2018, this was reviewed on PC. 

I love retro games, and retro inspired games are even better; they bring the nostalgia of old school graphics and music combined with new-age systems and mechanics. It’s cool. What a time to be alive. Anyway, Bugs Must Die is a top down, pixel art shooter, combining aliens and bosses that mimic Earth Pop Culture. The game is currently still in development by Chinese indie team Dragonglass Games Workshop.

I’ve been following the development of Bugs Must Die for a wee while now and have assisted the team with various English fixes both in their game, and in their marketing. So when it finally came time for me to play the demo and see first hand what it was like, I’ll admit, I was nervous. But thankfully the team at Dragonglass Games Workshop have developed something truly special in Bugs Must Die and I can’t wait to see the full release!

Gameplay is your stock standard top down shooter, the controls are clean and fluid regardless if you play keyboard + mouse or controller and I think that really speaks to the level of effort the team have put into development. All too often we see games with one control scheme preferred over another, sometimes for valid reasons and sometimes not. The graphics style, while present in many many (many many many) indie games, does not look dull and when combined with the awesome soundtrack, really draws you in. Something that I didn’t really pay enough attention to (sorry guys), is how in depth the upgrading and customisation options are. There are multiple ways to play; different guns, different vehicles, different specials and more. It opens up the gameplay massively and when deployed in a full game, will keep people coming back for more.

For me, what was probably one of the best inclusions, and again I’m forced to make comparisons against other indie titles, was the tutorial levels. All too often we see indie games, and sometimes AAA, just either gloss over a tutorial, not include one at all or miss key elements. Dragonglass have included two thorough tutorial levels which are optional but still net you money and a neato 100% sign when complete. The levels covered everything that I needed to know, and really set me up for the quasi-bullet hell combat that was to follow.

All in all, I’m really impressed and pleased with the progress Dragonglass have made thus far with Bugs Must Die, they’re concept feels fresh and unique whilst simultaneously paying homage to the devs’ inspirations. The demo is only a few levels long, so it waits to be seen whether the game can keep a hold on to its impressive first impressions. There is some work to do with the English but this is a must-add to your Steam wishlist!

Note: The assistance that I have provided to Dragon Class during development does not impact the comments made in this preview. No compensation has been provided and all assistance given has been for the purpose of supporting a growing indie developer.

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