It feels like all the games I’m enjoying at the moment are retro-style pixel games. This week’s game up for quick fire review, Party Hard is no exception. I was skeptical at first – the trailer and launch press release didn’t make it sound like the game had much depth and it would be akin to a arkanoid style shooter on foot with a knife.
It turns out I was very wrong.
Have a look at the launch trailer:
Party Hard is a top down game that puts you in control of a man who is tired. He’s tired of loud parties that keep him awake at night and he wants to put an end to them. And so he embarks on a nocturnal mission to attend these parties and kill every living soul in attendance. The game is narrated between levels by a cop who is trying to catch you and it puts an interesting and needed level of depth and story to a game that needed it.
You go about your murderous spree in a couple of ways – you can use your trust knife (quick stab), you can have people at the party do some of the killing for you and you can use several environmental ‘traps’ to get the job done (poisoned punch, anyone?).
The real objective is to not actually get seen doing any of the killing or trap-setting otherwise you’ll be trying to evade the police that the party guests call if they see you killing anyone. There are, naturally, more meta achievements like getting so many kills without alarming anyone or hiding so many bodies without the police being called. This adds a good bit of challenge to the game if it feels too easy (some of the levels do), and I found myself restarting levels just to get these achievements.
A nice feature, albeit one that feels like it was more for the Youtubers than the average gamer is the Twitch integration, where viewers on stream can vote for ‘curveballs’ to be thrown at the player.
The game is all round good fun with some minor flaws that don’t detract too much from the gameplay’s basic element – police are far too easy to evade for example and sometimes it feels impossible to get pick off kills if all of the party goers insist on staying together and never looking away. There’s also no way to kill someone if there’s someone else closeby even if they’re looking the other way – the direction the party-goers are facing seems to make no difference.
Party Hard is a good game and will keep you entertained for hours if you enjoy more subtle, easy-to-get-into strategy games. It reminded me a bit of Commandos of old and that’s a huge compliment to any game.
He also hosts the nAvTV podcast and this here website is his domain.