Preview: Monsters & Monocles

I will keep this preview brief due to there not really being much to know other than if you love twin stick shooters with a dash of pixilation, you're going to love Monsters & Monocles.

Monsters & Monocles is an early access game brought to us by Retro Dreamer. This indie twin stick shooter, is well, let’s put it this way, a whole lot of fun! Monsters & Monocles can either be played solo or with friends in local or online co-op. Now unfortunately because the game has not officially been released yet to the public I haven’t been able to try this out with anyone, but I will tell you this playing by yourself thing is a whole lot of fun, so I can only imagine what it would be like to run around with three other friends and shoot these wild monsters that cross into your path.

The monsters include eyeballs that spit sticky goo at you to slow you down, and then spawn baby eyeballs when shot, ghosts who can teleport behind you in a flash and Zombeasts who are big wolves that look like they should have died ten times over. There a many different types of monsters and you will have to adapt and learn the attack patterns of these monsters very quickly or the fight can go pear shaped very quickly. 

While there is no real objective to the game, the premise is simple, you choose a level from your headquarters (blimp) and then you're dropped into a level and given an objective which is usually to kill a number of a particular type of monster. Once you have done this you can proceed to the next part of the level by passing through a shop that will allow you to buy guns or health depending on your financial situation before reappearing into a section of the level to repeat the process. On your way you will find gold, which as I just mentioned is used to purchase health and/or weapons and armour. You will also find weapons, and a variety of upgrades that improve things like your gun damage, fire rate of particular guns and general passive abilities that allow you to dodge/evade more often.

You get two lives and once you have spent those it’s game over and you are back to square one, which can be quite annoying especially for someone like me who tends to struggle a little with twin stick shooters in confined spaces. I just don’t quite have that awareness that is needed to play effectively and safely. However I don’t feel like this impeded on my perception of the game as I just really enjoyed finding that new gun, or beating that boss that had killed me several times before. In a sense it reminded me a lot of Dark Souls in the way that it punishes you for even some of the smallest mistakes and that is what draws me to it.

Monsters & Monocles features full controller support so if you are like myself and feel like a bit of a dummy trying to use a keyboard and mouse, there is that option there for you and for the most part if you can, I would suggest you use a controller as I feel like it suits the controller better than it does keyboard and mouse. Monsters & Monocles is still in early access and I look forward to the final release and trying it out co-operatively, but for now I must forge forward on my own. All in all, definitely a game worthy of your time.

Zachary Weeks (Weeksy)
Aussie Gamers Express

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