The trailer for Beast Breaker looked charming, though I couldn’t quite figure out how much gameplay there was: was it really doing enough with Peggle-style mechanics to support a game? Were there enough adventure game trappings to make me care? Still, I heard a few people talk about it positively, including some expressing pleased surprise with how varied the mechanics were, that I decided to give it a shot as a breather between longer games.

And, for the first couple of hours, I was glad I did. Even the first weapon had some aspects that made it different from pure bouncy Peggle gameplay, having you chose between different moves with different characteristics and tactical uses. And the second weapon was completely different (and much less bouncy!) than the first one. And then I came across variants of those weapons, with different move sets that suggested a different approach to combat. There was also a little home base and characters that lived there, which suggested that, though it didn’t seem to be a full-blown adventure game, there should at least be pleasant narrative bits popping up.


For a while, it more less kept going like that: a third weapon type, more weapon variants. And monsters got a little harder, which made me think more about some of the mechanics that I hadn’t previously explored. There were even hints that I’d be heading out into a broader world that might lead to something interesting narratively?

But then it stopped getting better. I stopped getting new weapon types; I did sometimes unlock new variants of existing weapon types, but they were often very minor variants indeed. The plot bits got farther apart, and when they did show up, they weren’t very interesting.

And I also found that I wasn’t actually enjoying the gameplay all that much. Probably the weapon that felt the most fun was the initial weapon type, where you were bouncing all over the place, with a pleasant sort of randomness. But randomness comes with downsides as well as upsides, and as the monsters got harder, the downsides started to actually matter.


I kept on going for a couple more hours, but ultimately, I decided it was time for me to stop. I really had enjoyed the start of the game, but that enjoyment was more tied to the novelty of the combat and the initial charm of the game rather than the depth of the combat and the heart of the game. I won’t necessarily say that Beast Breaker is a bad game, but there’s not a lot more there than it looks like up front, and for me, that wasn’t enough to keep me going with it.

Post Revisions:

This post has not been revised since publication.