Drop you into a dungeon with no real context, Wildcat Pistol might initially leave you a bit perplexed.
As you take control of an anonymous female soldier wearing an eye patch, you’ll first find that everything you can do in Wildcat Pistol is move and shoot. Needless to say it’s basic and a little disappointing. But get the action going, viewed from an isometric perspective, and things pick up speed quickly.
As you walk through the hallways and rooms, you’ll find that the enemies here resemble DOOM in design; hellish and frequently combining organic flesh with futuristic technology. And once you’ve destroyed a good number of floating skulls and demonic entities in the first area, the game opens up and finally gives you an idea of what to expect in the long run.
That is to say defeat Wildcat Pistoland you’ll unlock the ability to dodge enemy attacks and throw a powerful grenade. You’ll also notice that a door somewhere in the dungeon you’re in becomes a little less infested with growth. So maybe if you find another boss and beat it, the door will open, allowing you to go further?
You’ll also likely have realized by this point that a mysterious currency you’ve collected can be used to craft new weapons and checkpoint upgrades. And when a gauge is full, you can activate a powerful “Gun Machine” mode for a short time, making you invincible and greatly increasing your firepower. Needless to say, you have all the ingredients for a great time.
And it’s. But it is also difficult. Ultimately, your goal is to fight your way through multiple dungeons, battling a myriad of powerful bosses along the way. To achieve this objective, you will have to move from room to room and defeat hordes of enemies. Many of these enemies spit bullets like they’re old fashioned; others hunt you with reckless abandon. However, killing enemies will only get you so far. You also need to find keycards, each giving you access to more areas of each dungeon.
To make things more exciting and improve your chances of success, many special weapons can be found in dungeons to bolster your array of guns. However, only one special weapon and one pistol can be equipped at a time, with the former having a limited number of bullets. Upgrades, on the other hand, include reduced cooldowns, alternate grenade types, new Gun Machine modes, and more. The steady pace at which they’re handed out makes things interesting. And even though you sometimes find yourself fighting for your life, it just feels right.
But as enjoyable as playing Wildcat Pistol, it’s not particularly impressive in any way. It’s just a fairly unremarkable bullet hell shooter wrapped up in a cute and colorful visual style. There are also problems. You can sometimes get stuck on a set in the heat of the moment, for example, and while additional respawns are available, they’re not particularly useful as they simply put you back at the entrance to the room you’re in. dead. And if you entered with shields or a full gauge of Gun Machine, you’ll find them depleted.
If you’re drawn to the art style, chances are you’ll have fun with it. Wildcat Pistol. Fans of the twin-stick shooter genre might also want to check it out. It’s a refreshing change for this type of game to not be a roguelike in today’s market, and while it won’t be on anyone’s GOTY list, there’s still hours of entertainment to be had with it.
Wildcat Pistol review – score from GameSpew
This review of Wildcat Pistol is based on the PS4 version of the game, via code provided by the publisher. It is available on PS4, Xbox One, Switch and PC.