by William Thompson
reviewed on PC
"Father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife and I will have my vengeance, in this life or the next."
If you’ve ever watched Gladiator, you may recall that near the beginning the main character Maximus Decimus Meridius (played by Russell Crowe) returns home from his attack on the barbarian tribes of Germania only to find it a smouldering ruin and his wife and child nailed to a cross. Dusty Revenge begins with a similar plot. Dusty – who has ears so long that Dumbo would be jealous - returns to find his home in ruins and the love of his life dead. It is then that he declares he will have his vengeance on the perpetrator, a tiger name Craven, strangely enough.
Dusty Revenge takes the form of a side scrolling fighter along the lines of Shank. Of course, Craven does not want Dusty to succeed and so thrusts a range of enemy henchmen in his path. Armadillos with naturally thick armour who curl up into balls to charge at Dusty, fast moving Felines with long, Freddy Krueger-like claws, Bulls that charge headlong into Dusty with their horns and attack from a distance with their firearms, Weasels that reminded me of the henchmen for Judge Doom in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, Frogs that burp out grenades and Moles with Big Daddy-style drills attached to their arm. Luckily, Dusty is armed with a number of abilities to help him with his vengeful task, most notably a couple of pistols that are at his disposal whenever oncoming enemies need to be… well… disposed of. They do small amounts of damage, but fire rapidly. For the heavy duty work, his high powered shotgun does more damage while being much slower to fire. Both of these weapons are especially useful against armoured foes, but as you might guess, not all of Dusty’s opposition is armored. For the less protected ones, Dusty carries a scythe-like sword which does a large amount of damage to unprotected foes and a furious attack using his fists which - like his pistols - provide quick attacks but have limited power.
Aside from the everyday fights, Dusty will come upon a number of Craven’s generals who provide the game’s Boss fights. These Boss fights are fairly easy in the early stages of the game but get much tougher in the later levels. Each of the bosses requires a different tactic to overcome, as opposed to the henchmen which are generally button-mashing fests. There is definitely a feeling of accomplishment as you defeat the likes of Aliciaconda - a snake charmer with a giant metal snake at her disposal, Tongada - an angry King Kong-like gorilla who pounds the earth creating a minor earthquake, and Amelia Swift – a feline who moves rather quickly and is difficult to pin down.
“There is always someone left to fight.”
Along his journey, Dusty meets a couple of individuals that will join him on his quest. A bear named Rondel and a dog named McCoy with a drawn out face reminiscent of a grizzled Huckleberry Hound have their own bone to pick with Craven and his followers. Rondel helps out Dusty with the use of heavy artillery that can damage opponents and various environments with his strike. McCoy on the other hand, is a sharpshooter and with the use of his sniper rifle can pinpoint enemies from a distance. Both are required at various points throughout the game as Rondel’s artillery fire can open up areas that are inaccessible to Dusty, whilst McCoy can snipe enemies who are out of Dusty’s reach and attacking with long range weapons.
Nice art style, cool boss battles
Voice acting needs some work, rather short