If you grew up in the ’80s and ’90s, you probably remember all of the B-rated movies that were released. Of course, nowadays we call this movie genre Cult Classics. From The Toxic Avenger to Big Trouble in Little China to even Masters of the Universe. Now one of the bigger cult movies was about a game show that had a hell of a killing story, starring none other than Arnold Schwarzenegger as the hero and titled The Running Man.
Unfortunately, when it comes to the video game world there have only been a few games based on murderous game shows. I personally find this very surprising because it feels like a setting that would fit any number of video game genres. Developer Artificer and Publisher Good Shepherd Entertainment have created a game that may be the turning point this genre needs to break out a new style and open new worlds for gamers. Homicidal All-Stars actually takes this idea and turns it into a turn-based strategy game, and for some, I believe this will be surprisingly compelling.
In Homicidal All-Stars, you’re competing in a gameshow where the stakes are your lives. Homicidal All-Stars is the most popular reality game show of the 21st century. The world has gone to hell in a handbasket, so its citizens distract themselves by watching people murder each other on television for money. I mean it is just common allure that no one can actually avert their eyes from a train wreck so let’s make money on it, right? And if that’s not bad enough, the evil Omega Corporation will do anything to keep their high ratings. To survive, contestants will have to avoid traps, take cover, and shoot their way to victory.
The combat in Homicidal All-Stars definitely uses the modern XCOM gaming style. You’ll have to navigate between full and half cover to avoid damage, and when you shoot at an enemy, you’ll have to contend with their cover situation and positioning, which is calculated as a chance-to-hit percentage. Melee attacks, however, are guaranteed to hit and can be devastating. I haven’t spent much time sinking my teeth into the tactical gameplay of Homicidal All-Stars, but I like what I’ve seen so far.
Not all Homicidal All-Stars are turn-based. Between fights, there is real-time exploration. That basically means you can control your character (or party) in a third-person view, looking for items, and avoiding (or disarming) traps.
The game only goes into turn-based mode once you run back into the competition. In this way, it’s almost like a dungeon crawler with turn-based action, just with a game show backdrop.
I definitely found the concept of the game interesting and a great idea. I will say though that I’m not really into the gameplay. There is however something that will make the game more enjoyable for me.
According to its Steam store page, you will be able to go for real-life fame and fortune with Homicidal All-Stars’ Twitch integration which, gives your viewers the ability to act as the in-game audience and send help or hazards your way.
This preview was written based on steam early access for Homicidal All-Stars.