[Beyond PlayStation] Ghoulboy Review
Ghoulboy from Dolores Entertainment is a 2D retro action platformer out on Nintendo Switch. Learn more about it in our Ghoulboy review!
Gunzabar is a land where witches, ghouls, and monsters lived under the rule of Gamunbal, the cruel Goblin King. He was wary of the prophecy that said a ghoul hunter would end the Goblin King’s life, and he knew exactly who this was: Galdar, the berserker. It turns out that Galdar had a son named Thulgar, who had made a name for himself as Ghoulboy. After Gamundal tracks down and traps Galdar, he believes he is now safe, but it turns out that the prophecy was not as accurate and precise as it first seemed since it is actually Ghoulboy who will set out on a quest to kill the Goblin King.
The game is a 2D action platformer, which means that controls are going to be simple and to the point. You can jump with the B button, double jump by pressing it once again after your first one, and will attack with your weapon with the A button. If you have a throwable weapon, you can send it flying with the X button. You will at first only have a small sword for melee attacks, as well as a limited number of daggers and spears to throw, and you can use your spear to create platforms so that you can get to previously out of reach spots. You can switch between your throwable weapons by pressing the R button, and once you gain access to the other melee weapons, you’ll be able to switch between them with the L button.
You will face off against flying skulls with wings, skeletons, minotaurs, deadly scarecrows, venom spitting plants, or giant frogs. There are also the always classic bottomless pits, spikes that (for a change) don’t kill you with a single hit, platforms that fall once you step on them, rotating platforms with spikes on one of its sides, acid pools, spinning blades, fire breathing demon heads, and more.
As you defeat enemies you will gain gold coins, gems or food to heal your wounds, as well as extra daggers and spears so that you can safely attack enemies from a distance. Gold and gems are very valuable in the game since they can be used to purchase upgrades that will recover your health as well as those that increase the number of throwable weapons at your disposal. Since a couple of hits might be enough to bring you close to your death, you should always try to top off your health bar with every merchant that you find. You can also go to the shop in the main menu to unlock the mace, which is the most powerful melee weapon, increase your health bar or your throwable item capacity, for 1,000, 1,5000, and 1,500 coins, respectively, so be sure to save up!
The game offers four graphics filters that can be applied to the game from the pause screen to add scanlines, a different color palette, or a combination of these along with a window that simulates the game being played on an old-school CRT TV for that good old-fashioned retro look and feel.
Ghoulboy is a fun homage to the 2D action platformers of ages past. It’s going to last you around 3 hours at most, but it’s going to be a fun ride while it lasts. You’ll play through dozens of stages as you make your way to the bosses that are trying to stop you, eventually reaching the final boss so that you can put an end to his tyranny for good.
This Ghoulboy review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Dolores Entertainment.