Pang Adventures Review

The first time I played Pang Adventures, I was appalled. An arcadey shooter heavily inspired by such classics as Buster Bros, Bubble Bobble, Sunset Riders, and more, I expected it to be an unequivocally cheerful venture, into another era when games were fun based off of their simplicity. And while I was seeing some of that represented, none of it really clicked. The game was too tedious, repetitive, and worst of all frustrating. So, this time I gave it another shot, but this time I played it with another person around. And just like that, my resentful perspective changed completely.

Gameplay:

In Pang Adventures, you and a possible companion are tasked with clearing out stages using a variety of different weapons and powerups, by shooting balls over and over again. (Similar to a Slime in Minecraft) But it’s kind of crazy how much this gameplay formulation can be adjusted depending on if you are playing alone or not. Play alone, and you’ll get a much slower and likely less rewarding experience. But with a friend, significant other, or family member, it’s complete chaos, but confined in the best retro way. To understand why this game can be so fun, you have to look more into the design and mechanics, rather than the simplicity.

Story/ Design:

Bosses include some interesting creatures

One of the more unique and prevailing aspects of Pang Adventures is the amount of weapons you have at your disposal. You’ll start off with a simple harpoon, but before you know it, numerous upgrades and even a rail gun may be in your hands. This may sound a bit too fast in terms of progressing a difficulty curve, but it actually works quite well. Each level adapts to a new details and ideas, making the game feel less repetitive than it could really be. And with multipliers added up at the end, it’s always an intense yet worthwhile race to see who will get the highest score. (Without falling victim to a lost life, of course)

Presentation/ Visuals & Audio:

Although the game does look acceptable, I wish there were more options to spice things up a bit, akin to Retro City Rampage

Pang Adventures also has a neat and enthralling art style. It’s one of those things that wouldn’t normally make a difference on it’s own, but it happens to fit the gameplay, and poppy audio design quite well. It’s also evokes heavy nostalgia, but not in an in-your-face way like some other games may do. This more respectable approach does the game wonders, and is yet another example of the small touches that propel this game into greatness I didn’t think it could originally reveal.

Conclusion:

There’s always something great in the element of surprise, and Pang Adventures proved to me how great this sensation is, peppered with hints of nostalgia and satisfying gameplay. You might not get a great first impression, but it’s one of those games that happens to be a grower not a shower. And in the age of so many games attempting to a multitude of different innovations at once, I suddenly remember that a more settled and nuanced take works just as well.

Pang Adventures gets a 7 /10 (Average)

We’d like to thank DotEmu for sending us a code!

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