Ritual: Crown of Horns
Switch version tested
Review code provided
Twin-stick shooters can be hit or miss. Same with “horde” style games. Ritual: Crown of Horns takes both of these genres, adds in some horror, and throws them into a Wild West setting. An interesting mix, to say the least.
You play as Goodchild. A (horribly named) bounty hunter who is immediately killed by demons at the beginning of the game. You’re brought back from your grave by a witch who, in exchange for your protection, offers to help you exact your revenge on those who killed you.
Each stage revolves around you killing hordes of demons, keeping them from reaching the witch while she performs a ritual to revive another ally to aid in your quest. If your health or the witch’s health runs out, you lose and have to start the stage over again. You start off with two weapons: a revolver and a shotgun. You unlock several other weapons (as well as magic spells) as you progress through the game.
There are plenty of stages, challenges, and unlockables to keep you busy. The story isn’t great, but it does its job. The gameplay is fun at first, but after a little bit, it starts to get kind of tedious. The music is a generic hard rock affair, but it works for the Jonah Hex-ish setting.
The main complaint I have is the steep difficulty curve. While I wouldn’t say the first few stages are easy, they’re nothing compared to what you encounter as you venture further across the map. It definitely gets frustrating as the character has no reaction to damage, so before you know it, your health is at zero and you’re greeted by a game over screen reading “Rest In Pieces.”
Overall, Ritual: Crown of Horns isn’t a bad game, but the difficulty can definitely turn some people off of it. If you’re looking for a challenging horde style game with plenty of unlockables, it’ll scratch that itch. If you’re looking for something a little more accessible and less frustrating, you may wanna look elsewhere.
TBG Score: 5/10
Platform: Steam, Nintendo Switch
Release Date: 07/11/2019
No. of Players: 1
Category: Shooter, Action, Arcade
Download link: eShop