The games of yesteryear have inspired many games today, and Slayin is a prime example, which calls back to the early days of gaming. Slayin is a retro inspired action RPG with most of the screen composed of a classic NES controller. The actual game screen isn’t even half of the iOS screen, and features bitty graphics, and an overload of enemies. What makes Slayin truly stand out is the endless nature allowing you to plow through enemies for as long as you can, battling through multiple environments and boss battles.
Slayin is surprisingly simplistic, and challenging at the same time as you’re only given directional controls, and a jump button. You attack the onslaught of enemies by simply running into them with your sword, but you’re vulnerable from other angles. The main challenge comes from the plethora of enemies at once so that the screen is literally filled with them, since it’s such a small game area. It’s great to battle through new environments, and the boss battles are a definite highlight. With that said, it’s disappointing to restart at the simple beginnings each time that you lose.
The game isn’t without it’s unlockables to keep you replaying, and there sure are a lot that can change the game significantly. First off, you can unlock the wizard, and knave with special abilities to help you last longer. The big unlockables are two additional game modes with the advanced mode starting at level 50, and boss rush mode focusing just on boss battles. The most handy unlockable is the dragon scale, which lets you restart where you die, and it’s essential for this game. The big problem with the unlockable system is that you really have to grind through to earn enough to unlock anything in the game with the high scale of unlockable cost versus what you earn. There is loot to pick up, 100 scrolling missions to achieve, and other ways to earn coins, but it still feels like a grind.
Slayin ($0.99, Universal) is a neat little distraction that provides action packed gameplay, and a great retro style. The biggest problem is that you have to grind through so much to get to some features that you would think should be standard. The set-up will leave a bad taste in your mouth making the game worth skipping despite the enjoyable gameplay. The main drawback is that there are not enough features at the beginning to entice you to keep playing long enough to earn the valuable features.