Have You Played… Heavy Bullets?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

Six bullets in the cylinder of a snubnosed revolver is a good limitation to build a roguelikelike around. That’s Heavy Bullets [official site], an FPS kicking you into a procedurally-generated indoor jungle with only six bullets. You can collect and reuse your bullets, but that’s not much use when they’re spent on the other side of the room and a chirping mutadog is charging towards you.

You may find spare bullets as you crawl through the neon jungle, but pauses to reload and recover bullets add interesting punctuation to combat. A good rhythm is always nice in FPS combat, creating interesting patterns of behaviour to master – consider how Doom’s shotgun makes you move. Heavy Bullets isn’t quite that fancy, but it’s pretty fun.

As you go deeper into the complex, more enemies appear, requiring new tactics to defeat them. You can find power-ups to help, some stranger than others, and a cash system with persistent banking lets you pick items up from vending machines or deposit them for future use.

It could use better level generation. Every now and then you come across an interesting combat space where the combination of enemies and their placement requires quick thinking on your feet, but too often it spits out a mess of a corridors. Shame. I had a pleasant few hours, though, and perhaps you might too.

16 Comments

  1. Dr.Ded says:

    I love the Heavy Bullets soundtrack; Dose One is legend among the underground!

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      gritz says:

      I just went from uninterested to piqued.

      • Scrape Wander says:

        Dose One has been an underground hiphop mainstay, and his recent entry into videogame music (the soundtrack in Samurai Gunn was an exceptional element in a game, raised it from good to great IMHO) is something that benefits us all.

  2. LTK says:

    A pleasant few hours is all I got out of it as well before I grew tired of it. As a roguelike, it really needs a lot more variation to avoid getting stale, and the reusable bullets mechanic doesn’t carry it very far. I won’t say it’s not worth the 89 cents I paid for it but there are better roguelike shooters to spend your time on.

  3. HuvaaKoodia says:

    I second the notion.
    I’ve been playing Tower of Guns recently and having a substantially better time with it.

    • HuvaaKoodia says:

      Intended as a reply to LTK, of course.

    • piedpiper says:

      Well… Tower Of Guns is kinda become cult-classic for me. That music is sooo… And gameplay…
      But Heavy Bullets is a different game. When you beat it – there is no real desire to go back to it. But 8 hours I spend to do it were great. And it’s more like survival-horror FPS than trigger-happy FPS. Not unlike System Shock with high tension slow moving and fear of corners and bushes… Argh, beware of bushes, always.

      tl;dr
      Great game for fans of survival FPS.

  4. phanatic62 says:

    Loooooove this game. Hint: Shoot the yellow boxes on the turrets. I played for hours trying to take out each turret with bombs. Also, get the exploding bullets.

  5. Xzi says:

    Ziggurat > Tower of Guns > Heavy Bullets, but they’re all a fair share of fun.

    • piedpiper says:

      Heavy Bullets are kinda out of place here you can’t put survival with SeriousSam like shooters in one row. And Tower Of Guns is better than Ziggurat. Though Ziggurat is great too.
      All three games are actually so much fun.

  6. LogicalDash says:

    I think Fancy Skulls is the nearest game to this.

  7. Jalan says:

    As much as I love this game, I can’t play it without being reminded of the fact that its developer was tried for war crimes. Granted, I have no objection to the man or said fact, I just wished a few game journo mouthpieces had really not went out of their way to make such a fact widely known as I’d be better off not knowing it.

    • Jollyrogers says:

      Are you referring to Total Biscuit’s joke? He said he should be tried for war crimes for the game’s difficulty. Terri wasn’t actually tried for war crimes haha

      • Jalan says:

        Not him, though as I now try to remember exactly who it was my mind is blanking for a name… so maybe it was him. But even watching his video as I type this, it’s the first time I’ve seen it so it can’t be him.

  8. CaptainFail says:

    Interesting rogue-lite concept, game design, shooter-element, soundtrack and atmosphere… All of that overthrowed by lack of concernment about final polishment of the game, last update was like year ago, and still some bugs, lack of diversity and worst of all, micro freezes every 20-30 seconds.
    Developer hides his own steam profile and ignoring all of the complaining about the game. A lot of people takes refunds, ok terri may don’t care, but what about publisher? Devolver doesn’t care at all?