Fury Unleashed (Xbox One) Review with stream
Challenging but fair
Action based combat but with deep customizable approaches
Slow drip feed of permanent unlocks creates and addicting loop
Takes a little time to adjust to the all shoulder/trigger button control layout
Some challenges and bosses are a little more difficult than perhaps they should be - get gud!
Fury Unleashed has been in development for over five years and the final product speaks to the long development cycle. This 2D side-scrolling action rogue platformer is always tough but fair and will keep you coming back for more.
Roguelikes are a dime a dozen these days but Fury Unleashed gets it right. Each encounter could be your last but the slow drip of permanent unlockables is an addicting gameplay loop. Although it is built around the rogue ruleset, combat has adopted twin-stick shooter mechanics to ensure each attack is fluid and accurate. Holding the right stick automatically shoots in that direction and the generous aim-assist helps make the constant challenge fair. The trigger and shoulder buttons are used for jumping, dashing and launching extra attacks like abilities and nades. At first, it is a little weird learning to jump with the left trigger but becomes intuitive by the second or third attempt. The player also has access to a melee attack and a butt stomp; all forms of attack gel together to create entertaining action based combat that never gets old. You will need to make use of the entire moveset to survive each comic book, aka each world, along with the large, challenging boss encounters.
The entire presentation takes a literal note of Comix Zone as the game is presented as a soldier progressing through pages of a comic book. Each screen is essentially one page and starts to become slightly Metroidvania-ish as exploration is encouraged and rewarded. Going out of your way to clear that one screen in the corner might yield a stat boosting upgrade or possibly a new weapon or perk. Speed runners might try and reach the end of each book by drawing a straight line to the finish but precautious players might want to explore for goodies at the cost of time and enemy encounters. Fallen enemies often drop ink, the game’s currency, which can be used to purchase upgrades or new perks. Sometimes ink can be spent at NPCs but will provide a random result, but sometimes nothing at all. This is a rogue afterall and sometimes life just isn’t fair.
Fury Unleashed is a challenging game as the player is sent back to the beginning upon death like any rogue title. However, each run earns experience points which can be used to unlock permanent upgrades. It takes a while to unlock enough perks to actually make a difference in moment-to-moment gameplay but the player also gains personal experience with each run. For example, after getting eaten by hidden venus fly traps for the fourth time, you will realize you need to proceed with caution when venturing through certain jungle areas. Each death is usually the fault of the player so it is hard to be frustrated at the game when you know you could have handled that death dealing situation better.
Even though it takes time and skill to clear even the first comic book, there is no denying the polish and care put into this title. It isn’t often that you will get your rear end handed to you time and time again only to keep wanting more.
Also available on Switch, PS4, and PC. There are also free demo versions available you can try for yourself and save progress transfers to the full game.
Also Try: Mana Spark (Switch)
Don’t Forget About: your other favorite Roguelikes
Better Than: HyperParasite