Curses ‘N Chaos Revealed By Mercenary Kings Devs


I’m struggling to think of things I could say about this Curses ‘N Chaos trailer that aren’t sarcastic. It’s an 8-bit-styled game where you seem to jump and stab monsters then sometimes a booby anime witch appears to say something encouraging. It’s a video game, I guess?

But that’s unkind: many of my favourite video games have involved jumping, stabbing, or monsters. The latest from Mercenary Kings developers Tribute Games is not a game that will come across well in a 93-second video of snippets. It will (or won’t, who could say?) be in the feel and timing of strikes, the tension as hordes of ghosts rush you, hoping desperately that a health pickup will drop, and the joy of collecting loads of tinkling coins. Come watch the first trailer and you’ll see.

The two-button co-op brawler is due to arrive this autumn.


  1. Lemming says:

    You appear to have missed the obvious relation/reference to Ghouls ‘N’ Goblins. Or you didn’t mention it because only I’m seeing it.

    • JamesTheNumberless says:

      I saw Ghosts ‘n Goblins/Ghouls and Ghosts references too, in the name of the game and from the looks of some of the screenshots. However, the video tells another story, which is a bit of a disappointment since Ghosts ‘n Goblins was one of my favorite arcade machines. Impossibly difficult for me in the 80s but I used to love watching the older kids, who could get really far.

  2. nebnebben says:

    The art style gives me a very cave story esque vibe. However on an unrelated note I am not entirely sure ‘booby’ is a word, unless you are trying to use it in the old fashioned way to mean idiot. Which you very well maybe trying to do

    • bill says:

      (noun) + y = (adjective)

      Though anime isn’t usually about the booby, it’s about the short skirts, pants and suspenders.
      A skirty pantyy suspendery witch appears.

    • jon_hill987 says:

      A booby is a seabird in the genus Sula.

  3. LionsPhil says:

    Having the pro- and antagonists use a very restricted pallette and style alongside much lusher coins, and to some extent background, looks distinctly odd.

    The trees have more graphical glitz than the full-screen witch portrait.

  4. Vagrant says:

    I hope the sound effects stolen from TMNT, Contra and one other game I can’t place (anybody recognize the item pickup noise?) are just temporary.

    • Philomelle says:

      Pretty much all the sound effects are actually ganked from Ninja Gaiden. It used the woosh sound more than TMNT did.

  5. Nevard says:

    I hmm
    I can see why it was hard to write a flattering intro for this game

    There’s just not very much that’s inspiring going on there is there? Is fighting waves of enemies on a single screen literally the whole game?

    • The Random One says:

      I can appreciate a strong focus, but that only makes the game even more dependant on the gameplay being totes slick.

  6. Philomelle says:

    It strongly reminds me of Tiny Toon Adventures: Buster’s Nightmare on Game Boy Advance, but with considerably worse graphics.

    That is not a compliment, given that Buster’s Nightmare was mostly a stepping stone used to prototype gameplay for another game.

  7. SkittleDiddler says:


  8. secuda says:

    More games should have ´N in their title, instead of and.

  9. DatonKallandor says:

    It’s the year 20-fucking-14. You can use more than two goddamn buttons now.

    Also I’m willing to bet those two buttons? They’re going to be X and Z, most likely non-rebindable. Because there’s nothing 2-button indie games like more than screwing over everyone who doesn’t have a QWERTY keyboard.

  10. Gargenville says:

    “not a game that will come across well in a 93-second video”

    You’re right, it only took me 13 seconds to decide I was down with it, the rest is padding and should’ve probably been cut.

  11. Darth Gangrel says:

    “many of my favourite video games have involved jumping, stabbing, or monsters” How many have involved booby anime witches?

  12. lomaxgnome says:

    It looks like Fairy Bloom Freesia, with crappy “retro” graphics. It saddens me that when pixel art is capable of being brilliant and gorgeous (ie SNES era graphics), instead we get so many terrible looking games that would have been derided in the 8 bit era. Not to mention the fact that Mercenary Kings never really turned into the game it looked like it was going to become, and this looks to be starting from a position with even less promise.

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      While I understand this is extremely subjective, I actually think the visual style of this game is absolutely effing gorgeous. Not gorgeous because it reminds me of anything, gorgeous on its own merits.

      What I feel is a little less subjective though, is when people say things like “crappy retro graphics”. We aren’t going to have the “are games art” discussion here because it bores me, but game GRAPHICS are certainly art. And dismissing anybody’s art as crappy, ever, under any circumstances, is frankly a terrible thing to do. All art takes effort to create, and whether or not you could do ‘better’ yourself is irrelevant, you still shouldn’t dismiss it as awful just because you don’t like it.

      You can, but you shouldn’t.

      • lomaxgnome says:

        I don’t disagree with what you’re saying, but the reason I use the term is because it really seems like “crappy retro graphics” is almost it’s own aesthetic now. Mercenary Kings definitely had retro style graphics but is high quality. If this game looked like that, great. Instead we get super low res pixel art designed to elicit a 8-bit feel that would have (in my opinion) looked inferior even in the 8-bit era. Now clearly, that appeals to some people, but I do think that more often than not it’s the nostalgia triggers getting the credit more than the art style.

  13. chargen says:

    I hope they change that “O” in Chaos before Games Workshop notices.