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Cruelty Squad is "an immersive power fantasy simulator set in a sewage infused garbage world"

And it looks it

Cruelty Squad has the aesthetic of early to mid '90s first-person shooters. No, not Doom and Quake. I'm talking about the trash you don't remember. The hyper-violence, the purple lighting, the repeating textures, the art assets rendered at wildly variable resolutions, the faintly cyberpunk themes.

It's out now on Steam and there's a sensorally aggressive trailer below.

Watch on YouTube

Do I want to play this? Not really, but it's certainly committing to the bit. Even the developer's name, Consumer Softproducts, and logo, are part of the act.

Although I'm drawing comparisons to trashier fare from the '90s, it's apparently also pulling inspiration from early Rainbow Six games. Each mission has "multiple viable approaches", you'll be able to select equipment before entering the fray, and your arsenal of weapons are mostly real-ish guns.

Here's the description from Steam, which is pretty good:

Cruelty Squad is a tactical first person shooter set in the hardcore gig economy of corporate liquidations. You're an emotionally dead combat-substance fueled grunt of Cruelty Squad, a depraved subsidiary company tasked with performing wetworks for its host conglomerate. Will you make the Corporate Arch Demoness proud or succumb to bitter tears of failure?

It has 'overwhelmingly positive' reviews on Steam, although most of them are getting in on the joke. I like that about the reviews, even - it seems an easy game to criticise for the wrong reasons, but Steam users are taking Cruelty Squad on its own terms.

If you wish to do the same, you can buy Cruelty Squad on Steam for £13.94/$18/€15.11.

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Graham Smith avatar

Graham Smith

Deputy Editorial Director

Rock Paper Shotgun's former editor-in-chief and current corporate dad. Also, he continues to write evening news posts for some reason.