The delights of this charming action brawler created by indie developer Tomatotrap are many in number. Plasma Puncher is simple to understand and difficult to get good at, offering a fun and light-hearted experience that still contains challenge. An adorable looking game with fast flowing and smooth gameplay that makes it look and feel very much worth it’s very reasonable asking price.
The basic premise of the game is that you are a white blood cell in a body that is under attack. Admittedly your white blood cell looks suspiciously like a martial artist but once you start laying into the microbes and critters crawling around on the surface of the giant virus invading the body you’re charged with defending, the appearance of your character quickly blends in with the action. Fluid gameplay brought about by the simplicity of the controls makes for a fairly relaxing experience, despite the fact that the game is not easy. As you progress through waves the new enemies appear with varying attacks. Once you have 4 or 5 enemies on the screen, all with different ways of bringing about your untimely demise, it can become quite hectic. The way Plasma Puncher progresses means that the difficulty ramps up quite quickly, but once you reach the next wave you re-spawn at the beginning of the wave each time you die, meaning that you keep anything you had gained in the previous level but lose anything you had gained between the beginning of the wave and the point of death. This minimises the amount of frustration gained as you will likely die a few times figuring out how to deal with certain enemies. However, you will likely die many, many times to start with as you get used to the different enemy attacks and your characters movement abilities.
As you progress you pick up resources from the enemies you kill that allow you to heal and upgrade. A significant variety of upgrades are available with some being fairly easily obtainable and some clearly requiring much more progression. Improvements in your characters resistance to damage, attack abilities and movement mean that you can develop your style as you play more, making for an interesting continued play experience. During each wave of enemies you can also grab extra health and power ups to get you through to the next stage.
The general simplicity of the controls may be a downside to some, but with upgrades you can quickly start to build different ways to adjust the feel of the game. Occasionally the controls can feel a little rough and trying to hit the correct enemies may become challenging, but these instances are minimal.
Plasma Punchers visual appearance is delightful. Bright, cheerful colours and well designed cartoony creatures and characters really enhance the jovial beat ‘em up vibe the game gives off. A very pleasant game to look at full of adorable artwork and design that maintains it’s interest despite the level appearance changing very minimally. Plasma Puncher is not a graphical masterpiece, but it’s certainly an excellent visual creation.
Your microbe bashing is accompanied by a wonderful soundtrack. Energetic and catchy beats play off the fast, smooth gameplay and absolutely inject additional energy into the nano sized chaos that defines this game.
Tomatotrap have created a superb brawler that’s bursting with character and individuality. Vibrant and providing significant potential playtime and enjoyment, Plasma Puncher is easily a game that can be experienced easily in shorter bursts while also feeling good to play for longer stints due to the saving mechanics and the overall simplicity of the combat. Easy to get started and easy to keep playing. A great deal of fun.