New rogue-lite in the vein of Dead Cells and Hades sensations, Have a Nice Death promises long hours of ecstasy and serial deaths.
After recounting the all-platform odyssey of Unruly Heroes in 2019, the Montpellier residents of Magic Design Studios have shaped a more demanding experience this time: Have a Nice Death, noticed in the cloud of presentations made during the pre-show of the last Game Awards. This rogue-lite with the good airs of Dead Cells makes us travel six feet underground to meet Death in person, CEO of the multinational Death Incorporated in charge of the treatment of souls. Faced with a crisis situation that he is told to resolve, the Grim Reaper is on the verge of burnout.
Have a Nice Death is currently available in Early Access for approximately one year. Here’s the current build status, as stated by the developers on Steam: “Many systems are in place, all we need is time to create more content. Right now, the feel of the game is what we want for launch. Multiple worlds will be available, each with their respective bosses (Scourge) and minions, as well as hilarious NPCs, but we want to flesh out the variety and differences between each attempt as it should be in a roguelike. This means more content diversity when it comes to worlds and their bosses.”
Rogue-lite demanding and good sensations
On the surface of the Earth, the top executives of Death Incorporated are doing whatever they want. So before he succumbs to a real nervous breakdown, Death will have to remind these unruly employees called Plagues who is the boss by using the strong way (by using murder, therefore). Equipped with his faithful scythe, he is determined to survey four departments of the box including that of Pollution or that of Diseases whose corridors are teeming with henchmen at the heels of their lazy manager. Not exactly robust, even within the arenas in which they constantly corner you, they will be defeated without too much difficulty. Also, although they drop some useful consumables when they pass away, it’s up to you to ignore them generously to head towards your real objective: The scourge of every service that strolls quietly on his desk, feet on the table. This is the pillar of the game and what makes it so demanding.
Both the implacable Brad and the flaccid Mr. George Güdron have many arrows to their bow; Expect varied skills and forms that will certainly destabilize you during your first runs. Attacks are easily readable, but errors are fatal. Fortunately Death does not die, but does not escape a terrible burnout which sends her directly back to her gigantic office chair, not without an ounce of annoyance. Like any good rogue-lite, Have a Nice Death learned, mastered, lets out a few lamentations which will later turn into cries of victory. The sensations on the ground are frankly excellent, enough to make you come back to it after a few hours of respite. As it stands, the four worlds of the game benefit from a very correct lifespan, ranging from 6 to 10 hours for a complete crossing depending on the level.
Ten minutes to take down that lazy Brad
Attacks, spells and chance
Apart from his scythe, Death can arm himself with two main spells automatically recharged by a Mana gauge. On the blows side, it is equipped with a jump, a dash, and a charged attack capable of crushing what is below. An onslaught of Rage finally allows him to deliver some massive offensives. Clashes continuously require aerial movements, which are easy to maneuver for this perfectly agile hero. The grip is really nice. On the other hand, despite a brief tutorial at the start of the game as well as a small glossary, all the systems sometimes lack clarity; you will have to study it patiently to integrate it perfectly.
When Death is back at square one, he must go hunting again with his basic equipment. As a tribute to the fantastic Dead Cells, his office houses a huge table which lists all the spells unlocked along the way and which you will have the possibility of finding randomly at the bend of the right corridor. And as you progress, the adventure opens up to excellent build possibilities. It’s up to you to choose your favorite attack style, while remembering that some minions are much better at range. Of the thirty pieces of equipment available, some accessories still pale in comparison to other, more robust ones. An imbalance that will naturally quickly make you prefer certain runs to others. But luck is undeniably the charm of Have a Nice Death. In the manner of its colleague Hades, with each elevator entered, you have the choice of the next floor generated in a procedural way. The technical room is the ideal place to improve your scythe, the equipment room is full of new spells and the store will offer you some essential accessories. You can also face four mini-bosses before the final confrontation. This random place is therefore an excellent parameter for theorycraft, capable of breaking the linearity that may be lacking in the course. Because here the floors are crossed quickly mechanically and it is difficult to get lost as the spaces are limited. In this sense, exploration sometimes fails to be truly rewarded, whether in small discoveries or in collectibles.
Mr. George Güdron receives a good beating
Sublime art direction and your bite
Despite the cramped quarters of Death Inc.’s offices, their cartoonish vistas are still absolutely delightful to peruse. The only possible criticism: their monochrome style which shows an obvious lack of change of scenery between each floor. The 2D is nonetheless superb, draped in pretty light effects and absolutely enjoyable animations.. Finally, the resolutely light tone of the title constitutes another pleasure; The game does not want to bother with heavy scripts and instead strikes you with short anecdotal dialogues that are sometimes hilarious. The humor, very French, is consistent with the universe drawn. So you will always have a smile on your face when you meet Pump Quinn, your intern and dedicated personal assistant with an adorable design.
- Excellent feelings for dynamic fights
- Very good maneuverability
- Excellent build possibilities
- Really good animations
- A nice artistic direction
- A good lifespan for early access
- Too limited an exploration
- Systems that may lack clarity
Really beautiful, fun, light but also demanding and already quite complete, Have a Nice Death has an experience not to be missed for rogue-lite enthusiasts. Graced with good maneuverability, a generous range of attacks and superb animations, it is one of those games that you easily fall in love with for its excellent sensations. It is therefore easily forgiven for its limited exploration and its few concerns about clarity.
Brent Dubin, known as the Gaming Giant among Globe Live Media staff, is the chief Gaming Reporter for Globe Live Media. Having attended all the major events of Gaming around the World, he is sure to give you exactly the update related to gaming World you are looking for.