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Game Info:

Gang Beasts
Developed By: Boneloaf
Published By: Double Fine Productions
Released: December 12, 2017
Available On: PS4, Oculus Rift, Windows, Linux, and macOS
Genre: Beat 'Em Up, Party
ESRB: E10+ for Cartoon Violence
Number of players: 1-8 offline, 2-8 online
Price: $19.99

A big thanks to Boneloaf for the review copy of this game and another thanks for the laughs.

The stage is set: the incinerator. The characters? A chicken, a dinosaur, and a guy with a hamburger hat. Everyone mashes buttons, hoping to land a few good hits. Threats of extra crispy chicken nuggets are thrown while the dinosaur drags the unconscious chicken towards the fire. Too slow. The chicken regains control and an audible thump is heard as he reverses the situation with a solid punch. Looks like the mighty dinosaur goes extinct once again.

Despite the dark name, Gang Beasts is a silly free-for-all brawl where the last player still in the arena wins. Each map has a different lose condition. Falling off the roof causes you to lose for the rooftop map, while drowning makes you lose on the Ferris wheel map. The characters wobble and flop as they walk, fight, and jump across the map, which is sure to cause a few laughs. If there is one thing this game is good for, it's laughs.

Gang Beasts
Highlights:

Strong Points: Laugh out loud funny
Weak Points: Lack of single-player content
Moral Warnings: Cartoon violence

It's hard to take battles too seriously due to sometimes glitchy physics and loose controls. In addition, the game is almost unplayable alone. The only mode you can play solo is waves, which is a human team versus waves of AI controlled characters. The numbers on the keyboard summon different objects into the game, which can be fun or annoying depending on who has access to the keyboard. Spawning too many objects can create horrible lag, forcing everyone to quit the game and rejoin.

Most pieces of the map can be moved or broken, which can produce interesting results. Traffic cones and boxes can be grabbed and tossed. Dumpsters can be rolled around and opened. Trains can be derailed. Elevator cables can be snapped, dropping your foes to their doom. If you can think of it, it can probably be done.

There are a lot of unique characters to choose from, in addition to a character creation menu. All characters have the same controls, but the character's features mean different places you can grab and punch. Some actions require short button presses, while others require holding that same button. The length of time you hold can be the difference between punching or grabbing, jumping or sprinting, kicking or leaning backwards, and headbutting or leaning forwards. Left and right arms work independent of each other; this means you can grab a player with one hand and punch with the other.

Gang Beasts
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 70%
Gameplay - 15/20
Graphics - 5/10
Sound - 8/10
Stability - 4/5
Controls - 3/5

Morality Score - 93%
Violence - 8/10
Language - 10/10
Sexual Content - 10/10
Occult/Supernatural - 10/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 8.5/10

Sounds in the game are limited to the song at Gang Beast's intro and some basic events, such as winning or knocking an opponent unconscious. Graphics and level design are simple, bland, and grey in some areas, while other parts have good coloring and interesting designs. Fire in the incinerator looks amazing, the beef vending machine and traffic cones look nice, while entire buildings can be basic in appearance. All of the levels offer something interesting, but once you understand the tricks, the winning strategy can be something simple like holding onto the blimp and ignoring everyone else.

The game revolves around violence, but no blood or gore is involved. The characters are able to bend, stretch, and squish under large amounts of force, but they return back to their usual shape later. There is a poop head character and others characters designed to look like Rick and Morty. During Halloween, there was a character with the head separated from its body. Jokes are made about beef and there is a billboard that says "Drink Beef".

Gang Beasts can be an enjoyable and funny experience, but it does have downsides. Slow control response, buggy physics, and simple levels plague this game. The worst part is the lack of content for single-player. While I love this game, I wouldn't recommend it unless you have some close friends or family you want to enjoy a few laughs with. I also recommend not playing this while people are trying to sleep.

-Sorrel

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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