Reviewed On: PC
Moribund – Review
Do you ever feel like shooting your friends? Well invite them round, sit on your sofa, and then blow their guts out with a harpoon gun. Moribund is here, fresh out of Steam Early Access. This post-apocalyptic, local multiplayer deathmatch game, now live on Steam, offers you the opportunity to do just that. So pick a psychopath (or killer robot) of your choice, and let the blood rain down.Story
As far as the story goes, there isn’t much to say. Moribund is your own little post-apocalyptic, death arena where dangerous killers and psychopaths are pitted against each other in a battle to the death. Think the Hunger Games, but with murderous cyborgs and insane killers instead of children, all equipped with a lethal harpoon and immobilising spore gun.
Graphically, the game has come a long way from when it first entered early access. The backgrounds, and character design have been cleaned up and vastly improved from their debut. As you might expect, many of the backgrounds are somewhat dark and forbidding, which suits the bloody, deathmatch theme well.The level design too, is very good overall. There are some very simple levels, but these are balanced out with the more complex, deadly designs of the later stages. Moribund’s take on gore remains on point too, with just enough blood and guts to satisfy your bloodlust, but not enough to make it feel like it’s trying too hard to be ultra-violent. The rag-doll mechanic is a fantastic feature too, really helping to make each and every death feel satisfying and hilarious. Let’s face it, nailing your friends disembodied torso to a wall is always going to be great fun.
The sound definitely seems to have been improved since early access, most notably the voice acting, which was previously pretty hit and miss, now tends to be both hilarious and high quality. The sound effects are also fairly well done, with the whistling of spinning blades and hiss of harpoon guns really adding to the death match atmosphere. The soundtrack is adequate and aims to get the blood pumping, but expect it to be drowned out by the cries and laughter of your friends.Gameplay
Moribund is a multiplayer 2D action game. The game is mainly geared around local multiplayer, but there is also a single player challenge section where you can test your skills by racing against the clock in several different, yet very difficult challenges.
You and 3 friends can choose from 8 unique characters, and two different multiplayer game modes (free for all, or team deathmatch) as you tear each other apart in glorious, rag-doll powered gore. Controllers work best (just about any controller should work fine) but you can also share a keyboard if you’re stuck. Although this is obviously fairly clunky and definitely not recommended.All players are armed with the same loadout; your trusty harpoon gun for those crazy kills, and an immobilising spore gun which, after a few successive hits, causes a giant tendril to appear which latches onto nearby walls, floors and ceilings, completely immobilising the player. The idea is to catch players using your spores and then nail them with a harpoon when they can’t duck out of the way.
There’s a 2 second wind up to fire a harpoon, and you can mash buttons to escape from being immobilised, so if you’re quick enough, you can just about escape in time. You can’t run out of ammo, but you must wait for your spores to ‘recharge’ once you fire them. The harpoon gun is a powerful and satisfying main weapon and the two second wind up before each shot leads to a lot of ducking and diving and general hilarity.There are now eighty different levels to explore, spanning across eight different settings. Each setting with its own theme, traps and mechanics. You will enter everything from harpoon turrets, to mines, to colossal spinning blades. Also, scatted across each level are useful power-ups that grant the player everything from exploding harpoons to bouncing spores.
Despite lacking online play, or much in the way of single player gameplay, Moribund is never the less a fantastic party game. The huge variety of levels play a vital role in keeping the game feeling fresh and each making each round feel more and more exciting. And the harpoon, ragdoll mechanics, coupled with the crazy characters, make for a hugely entertaining, hilarious experience. The game was a lot of fun during early access and has only been enhanced and refined since then. If you only play alone or online, you won’t get the most out of this title, but fans of couch co-op will have an absolute blast.