The Calumniation Games review for Nintendo Switch
System: To change
Release date: July 5, 2022
Developer: IzanagiGames / G.rev / Esquadra
Editor: NIS America
Yurukill: The Calumniation Games is almost a wondrous new twist on the Danganronpa formula, this time pitting a group of prisoners against executioners as the former attempt to prove their innocence to the latter in a sequence of mini-games and park-like attractions. themes that closely resemble old times in their lives, including the crimes they committed. It’s a fantastic amalgamation of storylines, shoot’em ups, visual novels, and murder-mystery-focused quizzes that work exceptionally well on a beautiful explosion of color and flair that makes the game as a whole an attraction. fully fledged.
Yurukill: The Calumniation Games sees the main protagonist, Sengoku Shunju, waking up in his prison cell where he is serving a sentence he firmly believes he did not commit: murder and arson. Stuck with others who have also been incarcerated on various charges, the prisoners are taken alongside their tormentors to Yurukill Land, a theme park filled with attractions and events that relate loosely and closely to crimes and storylines. of their past. Five separate teams of a prisoner and his tormentor fight their way through the theme park, but it’s not all fun and games, as they will fight for their lives in both games themselves. themselves and on the advice and judgment of their executioner. , in which they will make the final decision to forgive or kill. To raise the stakes even further, only one will walk away with his freedom, while the others will serve their last sentence.
It’s very reminiscent of Danganronpa and Zero Escape as the numbers dwindle throughout your time with the game, and the mysteries unfold with twists and turns around just about every corner. The plot of Yurukill: The Calumniation Games is deep enough that it doesn’t feel like a cliche to many who’ve done it before. Also, the way the game handles mystery is smartly done because rather than having things answered over time, more questions start to arise as you try to be as thorough as possible before each revelation appear at such ferocity that is most often breathtaking.
While visual novels like this tend to have flexibility in a linear space, Yurukill isn’t just about being able to solve puzzles in escape room-style gameplay, but instead incorporates much more. which creates an overall dynamic experience that feels both familiar and refreshing while maintaining an identity of its own. Outside of its detailed escape rooms which are packed with tons of difficulties ranging from novice to advanced expert (there is no global difficulty option for the game itself), players should do their best to keep their tormentor happy. In the shoes of Sengoku, he faces an executioner who has the power, like the others, to kill him at will, and with personal ties that may or may not be indirect with the crimes he is supposed to have committed, it takes a lot of conviction that the executioner wouldn’t just want to press the kill button on his Yurukill passport and be done with him rather than see Sengoku get a fair trial.
When things heat up, the game escalates as puzzles are put on hold while going through what’s called Maji-Kill Time. It effectively makes you testify to what you believe to be the truth, but going through this mode the executioners do not take false statements and lies lightly, so with every question their desire to kill through the Urge Gauge To Kill increases, and unless you have answered all the questions adequately, you can expect to be poisoned and killed on the spot, which will result in a game over. These trials are some of the most fun parts of the game, as they tend to keep you on your toes and thinking like Sengoku, while serving as a way to make sure you’ve been paying attention to arguments, notes, and the surroundings around you. from you. Yurukill does a good job of pacing and making sure there’s that right balance between gameplay and dialogue, as well as the unexpectedness of having your life on the line again once things start to feel comfortable. or stable.
Despite all the grim and gory events unfolding, Yurukill: The Calumniation Games’ presentation is one of the biggest draws thanks to its wide palette of colors which it doesn’t shy away from providing visual feast for the eyes. Much like Danganronpa, the title doesn’t need to rely on dark, shadowy, rusty tones to convey a sense of weirdness and discomfort, letting the actions speak for themselves in a stylized way that appears on both a TV and an OLED screen. The character portraits in particular are all wonderfully illustrated and complemented by unique borders that often look like lights shining and react in and out of the illustrations and dialogs to their emotions and exclamations, making them a showcase of their own. whole apart from the main attractions. the game.
With a prisoner’s life still at stake, they’ll fight tooth and nail any way they can, and those features extend even further into the Prejudice Synapse and Mind Maze segments that accompany the weird but perfectly implemented from Yurukill: The Slander Games. It steals the show from the main game and is thankfully also offered as a separate experience that can be played standalone upon startup. The shmup aspects are incredibly smooth and play as much as one would expect compared to others in the genre. Standard bullets fly at a rapid pace, crushing enemies big and small, and special ammo is gathered over time with power-ups and drops that really help unleash massive attacks that can take out waves of enemies at once by the press of a button. Any lives gained throughout aren’t so much for the shmup segments themselves as they can be quite forgiving, but they will be needed when traversing the Prejudice Synapse and Mind Maze parts where a wrong response or mistimed move can take lives. at a time. More lives obviously equates to more chances, so despite the semi-easy nature of shmup servings, it’s always good to deal with it with focus and avoid carelessness as those lives will come in very handy. For avid fans of shmups and bullet-hell titles, it’s easy to embrace the implementation of this in Yurukill as it feels right, with the added flavor and panache of Yurukill’s dynamic presentation.
Where Prejudice Synapse and Mind Maze play into all of this is done seamlessly through the shmup segments, where Sengoku will have to fight his way through the executioner’s mind and neural pathways to destroy prejudice and discern respectively the truth from the lie. These segments are however slightly different, although they are still in control and inside the vessel used in Brain Reality (BR), where in Prejudice’s case, Synapse Sengoku will have to destroy false evidence and beliefs by presenting the facts. Mind Maze, on the other hand, has Sengoku mostly going through a tunnel of obstacles that must be avoided alongside questions that must be answered correctly, piecing together sentences to move forward and correct a line of thought. These two distinct mini-games within one big one make Yurukill: The Calumniation Games feel particularly complete, in-depth, and properly packaged, and lends itself well to a gameplay loop that, surprisingly, never gets old thanks to the changing content ( and the underlying context) every time. a new attempt is made by going through the story.
Yurukill: The Calumniation Games is a wonderful mystery visual novel with other gameplay elements that really help make it feel well packaged and polished and stand out from others in the genre. It’s arguably one of the most inventive, fun and interesting additions to the genre to come out in years, and the story is constantly evolving and getting more and more exciting as more and more attractions and escape rooms are experienced. The puzzles themselves all work well within their respective themes, and while some puzzles might seem a little more than logical, a hint system is there to make things more palatable for any players who decide to give Yurukill: The Calumniation Games a chance to prove their innocence, and anyone wanting something new along the lines of Zero Escape and/or Danganronpa should look no further than Yurukill: The Calumniation Games to quench their thirst for clever stories, thoughtful results and a world where trust is a luxury.
It’s hard not to want to compare Yurukill: The Calumniation Games to Danganronpa, but it’s a beautiful blend of mystery thriller, stellar writing, and excellent gameplay and visuals that show off the talents of every designer behind IzanagiGames and the work which includes their portfolios. Aside from some odd stutters when opening menus or transitioning between shmup and visual novel portions during the Brain Reality and Prejudice Synapse segments, Yurukill is a visual feast in all aspects of Switch gameplay. , and the pacing is good enough that once you crave a new shmup level or some other type of mini-game to prove your innocence, you’ll most likely receive it. It’s not often a title like this incorporates shmup elements more as an add-on feature than the sole foundation of it, but it works incredibly well here. Yurukill: The Calumniation Games is a must-have for fans of Danganronpa and others inspired by it, and while the characters aren’t as memorable as others in IzanagiGames’ current catalog, it’s still a good time. flashy with lots of panache and heart – thrilling moments to be had.
Yurukill: The Calumniation Games copy provided by the publisher for the purposes of this review.