Gunscape – Review
Follow Genre: FPS, Crafting
Developer: Blowfish Studios
Publisher: Blowfish Studios
Platform: PC, Switch
Tested on: Switch

Gunscape – Review

Site Score
Good: Retro-inspired graphics and music, Build your own maps, Community content
Bad: Only a short campaign, Dead servers on the Switch
User Score
(1 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 6.0/10 (1 vote cast)

Almost everybody has heard of Minecraft, the popular world builder and survival game from Mojang & Microsoft. But what if you want to build and play your own FPS maps in the style of Minecraft? This is the foundation for Gunscape which is a fun small game that gives you the ability to make your own levels and play those of others. In the past, we already played a different title from Blowfish Studios, Winter Ember, so it is nice to see how they handle different genres.


When you start up Gunscape for the first time, you are met with a suggestion to play the campaign first. This campaign consists of eight chapters where you are stuck inside a testing facility and are instructed to run a few tests. At first, you comply, but as these tests turn out to be much more dangerous, you decide to sneak out. Once you make it outside, you still have this feeling of being watched. Does this mean you are really outside or is this place another test? Making it through this campaign will take around an hour and a half to complete. After this, you should have gathered enough inspiration to start making your own levels and get a taste of what styles of assets are available. As Gunscape is all about creating your own content or playing content made by others, there will be many original campaigns and stories to be enjoyed.


Visually the game is a blast from the past thanks to its early 90s graphics. If you have experience with that era of FPS then you’ll surely enjoy the simpler approach to the visuals and the pixilated graphics. Another nostalgia trip is the inspiration used from the popular games back then as you’ll find assets from titles that are a reference to Turok, Wolfenstein, Bioshock, System Shock, and many others. With these assets, you will be able to recreate your favorite scenes or make your own scenarios of those games, or even mix them together to create your own biopunk Wolfenstein experience. The HUD doesn’t take up much space as the only information given is in the top corners but it can be hard to keep track of your health as it is wedged in the far left corner.


Just like the graphics, the sound design is also retro-inspired. If you are attentive enough, then you might even spot some original songs being parodied for this game. When you are blasting away the various enemies, you will enjoy the classic simple yet strong weapon sounds. Nothing beats the mechanical sounds of a shotgun in action or the futuristic Sci-Fi sounding laser blasters. We enjoyed the attention to detail to give all the weapons unique sounds that match their ammo type.


Gunscape is a builder game where you have the ability to create your own retro FPS experience without having to be a game developer. If you are familiar with older FPS titles then you might remember the ability to create your own maps, as this was a function in some games. Gunscape took the inspiration of Minecraft’s building elements and gives you the power to build your own experience just like with those old “create your own maps” shooters.

When first booting up the game, you are advised to play through the campaign mode. This mode will teach you the very basics of playing the levels by yourself or with others. The campaign can be enjoyed in multiplayer, either online or locally via split-screen, but if you want to go at your own pace, then you might prefer to do this on your own. Getting through this little mode will take you roughly an hour and a half, and it lets you discover all the assets available to build your own levels. You could always just skip this and start playing the content that was made by others or start making levels yourself. As the game is highly community-driven just like Mario Maker it means the more people playing the more content there is available for you. Currently, the game only has a tiny player base with only a small amount of content available, but this can always increase in the future. Sadly, as the servers looked pretty dead, we could not try out the online co-op mode.

Creating your own map is quite straightforward as you always start with a basic map as starting point. If you want a simple map to play deathmatch on, then you can whip something up in mere minutes. If you, however, want to create your own campaign, then you’ll have to spend a lot more time constructing maps and other elements. When designing your own campaign levels, you can place terminals with which the player can interact, or you can add message pop-ups when they reach a certain area. All the building blocks are available and mixing the various inspirations could lead to some cool ideas. The blocks all snap in place, and thanks to simple controls, you can easily expand your map. Just make sure to test your level to see if there is anything missing or if there are improvements to be done.

We had the chance to try out the Switch version of this game, which is also available for PC. Having to fit an endless map-building game on the Switch software could mean a serious challenge, yet the developers at Blowfish Studios managed to pull this off without any performance issues when using the game as intended. When trying out the main campaign or other normal levels made by players there were zero issues. It was only when we tried a player-made level that had an uncountable number of enemies spawned in one small location that the performance took a dive to low frame numbers. Of course, this is completely due to the map being created this way by another player and isn’t really the developer’s fault. To prevent situations such as this, they could put certain limits on enemy spawns, for example.


Gunscape is a good blast from the past with its inspiration clearly drawn from games of the 90s era. Its combination of simple pixelated graphics and a retro-inspired sound design will have you reliving the days long gone. Having the artistic freedom to create your own maps in a simple and accessible title while also giving you the ability to play them immediately makes for a nice package. Thanks to the campaign, you will get around one and a half hours of nicely structured gameplay accompanied by a simple but pleasant story. Currently, the player base is rather small but we are certain this will expand over time, especially when more and more qualitative user content will be released.  The game is also out for PC and this version might be a little bit more interesting as you have a mouse pointer for quicker building. Nonetheless, if you enjoy building maps and old-school FPS titles, then this one might be your cup of tea.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 6.0/10 (1 vote cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Gunscape – Review, 6.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

Never give up on a dream. It might be a long nightmare, but one day it will change into a beautiful reality - MC_JP 2014

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