I consider myself a decent typist, and better yet at dodging bullets in shmups. Today’s demo for The Textorcist: The Story of Ray Bibbia taught me a painful lesson: I am ill-equipped to do both at once. Due out on this week on February 14th, players control exorcist-for-hire Ray Bibbia with the arrow keys, dodging bullets as you would in any bullet hell shmup. Unlike other shooters, to fire back you need to type reams of scripture one-handed, splitting attention and motor control multiple ways. It’s intense, but fun. Give it a try here on Steam, and check out the launch trailer below.
The demo contains a tutorial mission, plus the first two proper battles, plus a chance to poke around Ray’s home and interact with objects the way you do everything else; typing. I’m impressed at how fully the game commits itself to this, and the bosses so far are satisfying to fight, especially once you learn when it’s safe to type two-handed. Your main enemy in fights is the clock. If you take a hit, so long as you reclaim your dropped bible quickly (ala Sonic and his rings) you won’t take damage. Some attacks like demonic vomit can temporarily hide what you’re meant to be typing.
There’s a whole lot of crude and gross-out humour here, and not too much of it hits the mark, in my opinion. Vast tides of pea soup vomit is just the tip of the iceberg, and from the looks of the trailer there’s plenty more to come. I do notice that while the demo levels feature typing english phrases, you’re going to have to bust out the latin to deal with actual demons later on. It’s a mentally and physically exhausting game to play, but it’s nice to see something interesting done in a typing game, even if it doesn’t make me giggle like the original Typing Of The Dead.
The Textorcist: The Story of Ray Bibbia launches on February 14th, this Thursday. You can find the demo on the game’s Steam store page here. Headup are publishing this one.