Anuchard Review — Ring a Bell – TREND GAMING
The floating continent of Anuchard has long since fallen. Its inhabitants scattered across the world, all that remains is a small village near the coast and the mysterious dungeon. The five guardian deities retreated to the depths of the dungeon before the fall, and all who enter after them return as statues. The people place their hopes in the Bellweilder’s prophecy; an individual who will ring in a new era by restoring gods and continents to their rightful place.
Anuchard is a bit strange game. It’s part dungeon crawler, part city builder, and part puzzle game. You play as the Bellweilder and enter the dungeon to collect the souls of those who perished inside as well as the five guardians. To do this, you wield a bell with a surprisingly small but versatile moveset. You can perform a three-hit combo by pressing A and dodge or knock enemies back with B. Although your combo is your primary damage dealer, most enemies start with at least a stack of shields, which you cannot remove than overturning them. wall. It’s essentially the full depth combat provided, and it can get quite tedious with how often you have to fight and how slow you walk.
Despite this, the fight isn’t really the focus of Anuchard. Each section of the dungeon is filled with puzzles to solve. Most puzzles involve hitting a green ball into a red switch to open a door. Slowly you will discover more and more complications on this simple premise, such as teleporters, walls that only the bullet can pass through, and more. I found the puzzles started off a bit in death, but from the third biome onwards they got a lot more interesting with all the mechanics you need. You can force a number of them, which can be good or bad depending on your perspective, and while I wish there were more types of puzzles, it works well enough for runtime Game.
Inside the dungeon, you will find several types of collectibles. You can find the souls of some minor NPCs to restore in town, as well as resources to upgrade the town. Each biome has a unique type of resource as well as a more generic type, both of which are needed for upgrades in certain areas. These upgrades can be cosmetic, like filling in a pond, or more mechanical, like making the enemies you knock down damage other enemies in their path. It’s a neat system that ties together the dungeon-crawling and story-driven segments. However, that’s a bit superficial given that most upgrades are purely visual, prompting you to save your resources to purchase more useful upgrades. Although the game has side quests, I haven’t had a chance to do any as they are introduced and expire very quickly, usually between each section of the dungeon.
Unfortunately, one of the main reasons I haven’t committed to the side quests is that the game is horribly written and/or translated. The characters lack any sort of voice or personality, making everyone feel exactly the same, and the word choice and sentence structure are often incredibly awkward. The game also has a lot of dialogue, both in and out of the dungeon, and it feels poorly written. The story is also very predictable, which is a shame because a good plot could have made the game much more engaging.
While the gameplay leaves a bit to be desired and the writing feels sloppy, the music is anything but. Given the abstract pixel art style, the game uses retro tunes similar to the NES or SEGA Genesis. Almost every bit is an absolute bop and got me through the less exciting parts of the dungeon. The sound effects also have a retro charm, with some bosses having somewhat squashed voice clips. I wish your attacks sounded more like a bell, given that you’re hitting things with a giant bell, but the sound effects have a satisfying crunch.
So far, it may seem like Anuchard is a pretty generic dungeon crawler with a lot of missed potential. And while that’s true, I feel like it’s at least worth a look. Starting with the third biome, the level design improves dramatically and actually becomes a lot of fun. It’s a fascinating shift to watch unfold if you’re interested in game design, as if the developers were still figuring out what they wanted the game to be for the first two thirds.
Anuchard presents some interesting concepts, but is carelessly executed. While the combat is extremely simple, the level design is lackluster, and most of the puzzles are too easy, the last hour or so is very promising.
David is the kind of person who wears his heart on his sleeve. He can find positives in anything, like he’s someone who loved Star Fox Zero to death. You’ll see him play all kinds of games: AAA, Indies, jam games, games of all genres, and write about them! Right here. On this site. When he’s not writing or playing games, you can find David making music, playing games, or reading a good book. David’s favorite games include NieR: Automata, Mother 3 and Gravity Rush.