The 5th of August 1980 is a date etched in the minds of all horror fans. Friday the 13th the horror franchise was unveiled to the world. This scare-fest has thrilled and horrified enthusiasts of the genre for years. What no one expected was for it to be the influence behind my latest review title. Friday the 13th Killer Puzzle has been developed and published by Blue Wizard Digital. The team is the masterminds behind some of the most iconic mobile titles, such as; Bejewelled and Plants Vs Zombies. Can their latest title hit the heights of their previous games, or will it be a flop? Shall we jump into this review and see what it’s all about? Yeah, why not!
Friday the 13th Killer puzzle has you controlling the iconic villain Jason. He is hell-bent on gaining revenge against those who have wronged him. Influenced by the severed head of his mother, you must work your way around an isometric puzzle, killing everyone in sight. This horror-puzzle title is an unusual gory mix of violence and humour. With gruesome scenes and tricky obstacles to overcome, you will laugh at the bloodshed while contemplating your next move.
The gameplay is split over 3 different modes; Play, Daily death, and Murder Marathon. The main component of this title is the play section.
Play – This area asks you to work your way through some of the cult franchise’s much loved locations, and some new ones. You gain revenge and generally run amuck. The premise starts off simple enough, and as time goes on extra game mechanics are added (more about this later). There are 12 different chapters for you to explore, each with their own unique design, and difficulties to overcome.
Daily death – This is the hardcore element of this puzzle title. It follows the same principles as the main game, but you are not allowed any hints to solve this standalone trial, and the difficulty is set at a much higher level. As its title suggests, you are given one task per day, so if you find that you can’t solve this problem, then wait for the day to elapse, and return to try the new challenge.
Murder Marathon – A fun-filled kill fest where you must time your blows perfectly to finish your victim. A bar is shown in front of you with a red area, stop the moving cursor at the correct moment, and you will take the person’s life in the most horrific manner; decapitation, disembowelling, ripping arms off, and so on. It’s gory as hell, but what are you going to do when you are an insane murder inspired maniac. As you take each of your victims lives, you begin a killing streak that will keep growing as long as you don’t mess up your timing. If you fail to time it correctly, the person will escape your grasp, and it’s game over.
The game mechanics constantly alter as you enter each of the new chapters. You begin the game off with the aim to move around each area, planning your moves based on any obstacles and the path you can take. As the difficulty increases you have to consider several moves ahead, and the new traps, and extra interactive items in each stage. You will be introduced too; water, holes, mines, electricity, and so on. If your victims hit any of these objects, they will meet a grisly and unfortunate end, but so will Jason. You must study the maze in front of you in great detail, as one wrong move can undo all your hard work, and you will have to start again.
Talking of starting again, you are given the freedom to undo any move, or restart the puzzle. This is key to understand as you will definitely use both options. “What happens if I get stuck?” Again, this will happen as well. Luckily, mother has your back. Her decapitated floating head offers the chance of a hint, or the full puzzle solution. Both are unlimited to use, so if you find that you really can’t proceed, you need not worry that you can’t continue on with the game.
The gameplay is presented in both a 2D and 3D perspective, all the action takes place on a fixed screen in front of you, so it is easy to plan your approach for each level. The developers have used a distinct cartoon art style that is as colourful as it is over the top. The cutscenes are full of blood and gore, though you are given the chance to rate this to PG if you find that it’s too much. Each of the worlds has a unique look, and few of the assets have been reused. The final kill scenes are brilliant, hilarious, and capped off with the classic X over the eyes to show loss of life. I loved how Blue Wizard Digital presented the graphical element of this game. It was fun and worked perfectly with the theme.
For fans of the franchise, you will be glad to know that the classic Jason sounds are included in this game. There is nothing better than hearing “Ki, ki, ki, ma, ma, ma” as you approach your helpless victim. The gruff and ominous voice-over work sets the scene and fills you with a sense of foreboding and power. Everything about the audio suits the classic horror, from the blood-curdling screams, to the dark and sombre tones.
Like most isometric puzzles, there isn’t a lot to worry about with the controls. With minimal movement required, (you use the; up, down, left and right on the analogue stick) your biggest concern is timing the kill scene correctly. All the buttons are shown on the screen, so your focus will be on the problem at hand, and how to overcome it.
Whenever I review a puzzle game, I’m always concerned about the replay factor. With this one, I was surprised that there was so much more to do than just complete each stage. With the 3 game modes to explore, level progression called “Blood Lust”, a body count to keep topping up, and a host of unique weapons to collect and upgrade, there is a lot to make you return. The achievement list is hard, but with a little time and patience, it is manageable.
With this title not being released until the 17th of September 2020, you must wait a week or so to get your hands on a copy. Press this link to pre-order this game. https://www.f13killerpuzzle.com/xboxone.
This dark and gruesome puzzle game has the right balance of humour and difficulty, and it will keep players on their toes throughout. With a high level of replay value, and the joy of controlling Jason, this will be a title for gamers from several backgrounds. Do I recommend that you buy this? Absolutely, it’s fun, disturbing, and the perfect nod to the Friday the 13th franchise. It’s time to grab your mask and weapon, the only thing that stands before you and revenge is those pesky puzzles.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Xbox One code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to email@example.com.
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Friday the 13th: Killer Puzzle Review
Gameplay - 8/10
Graphics - 8/10
Sound - 8/10
Replay Value - 8/10
User Review( votes)
Jason wants his revenge! Who better to guide him than his decapitated mum. Over 150 levels of gruesome killing and puzzle fun.
- Brilliant and gory cartoon graphics.
- The audio works with the franchise and theme perfectly.
- Lots of replay value.
- Great value for money.
- Daily death challenges can be too hard at times.