Every once in a while, the hillbilly way of life makes its way back into the pop culture spotlight. We seem to be reaching the end of this phase, as poor ratings result in the cancellation of TV shows like Duck Dynasty and Honey Boo Boo. However, Immortal Redneck is flying in completely undeterred, with a brand new fish-out-of-water hillbilly story: a redneck wakes up mummified in Egypt. Yes, you read that right.
CremaGames has had great success in mobile games market, with tens of millions of downloads worldwide, and Immortal Redneck is their debut PC game. It features a vacationing redneck who drives off a cliff in Egypt and wakes up mummified. It’s a fast-paced first-person-shooter that feels a whole lot like Doom or Serious Sam. The developer’s goal was to create something outrageous and entertaining, and they’ve nailed it.
As your redneck awakens from his slumber, he finds himself surrounded by three large pyramids. Your objective is to climb to the top level of each of the three pyramids, taking out monsters and finding treasure chests as you go. You start the game with three basic weapons, and you discover more by killing monsters, finding treasure, and unlocking new classes.
The pyramid levels are procedurally-generated, meaning each time you enter a pyramid, your experience will be different than the last. Guided by a mini-map, you must find your way to the staircase of each level until you reach a boss. It’s impossible to sneak your way through the game, as the doors lock behind you upon entering a new room. You are forced to clear every enemy from each new room in order to continue, even if the room you’ve entered is a dead end. The procedural generation of the pyramids prevents you from memorizing the floor plan and enemy locations of a specific level. Although some patterns may eventually be recognized, each new game results in a new maze puzzle to solve.
The intelligent sound design of the game provides some assistance when you’ve cleared a room. The up-tempo fighting music dies down as the last enemy is defeated, giving an audible signal that you can continue to the next room. This is an excellent design choice and saves the player from having to run around the room to make sure its clear. Combined with colorful, clear graphics, the visual and audible design is spot on.
Immortal Redneck does an excellent job of playing with room layouts and ceiling heights. Although each room is procedurally-generated, if a monster is situated in such a way that he could see you enter the room, he immediately begins attacking, no matter his distance. Monsters who cannot see you continue on their usual path until you slide into view. This creates an interesting challenge when entering a room. You may be attacked by a swarm of terrestrial monsters at the same time a bunch of flying monsters spot you from across the room. While you are dodging attacks from both of these enemy types, an archer may be shooting flaming arrows at you from a platform two levels above your head. Many games prevent the monsters from attacking until within a certain range, but Immortal Redneck feels more realistic in its combat design. Well, about as realistic as a game about a mummified redneck can feel.
Early enemies include a flying skull monster who has the tendency to team up on you and follow you around like a magnet. Shooting a rubble pile may uncover half a dozen tiny eyeball monsters who swarm at you maliciously. You will come across Anubis-like creatures who shoot flaming arrows from afar and solid, round monsters who wield slow but strong melee weapons.
Weapon options vary just as much as the monsters. You start the game with a pistol, a shotgun, and some dynamite. These follow the standard rules of most FPS games: the pistol is fast but weak, the shotgun slow but strong, and the dynamite the slowest and strongest. At first, you are only allowed to carry three weapons, so when you come across a new weapon in a pyramid, you must carefully decide which of your existing arsenal to replace. You can find things like a potato launcher, rocket launcher, or double pistol. When playing as a class other than the redneck, you’ll use class-specific weapons like a magical staff or coilgun.
One interesting aspect of Immortal Redneck is the skill tree, which is a literal tree found outside of the three pyramids. Every time your character dies, he respawns with all of the gold he had obtained upon his death. This gold must be spent before entering a pyramid, or else it’s all forfeited at the door. Gold can be spent to level up things like strength, defense, health, critical chance, and critical damage. New classes can also be purchased by utilizing the skill tree. These skills stay with your character, no matter how many times he dies while battling monsters or falling into lava. Hardcore players have the option to bypass the skill tree entirely, but they’d miss out on the creative weapons unlocked with the purchasable classes.
Fans of first-person shooter games like Ziggurat or Serious Sam will enjoy Immortal Redneck’s new take on the genre. CremaGames succeeded in their goal of creating a fast-paced, exciting, and outrageous game. If you are interested in hearing more about Immortal Redneck, please check out our interview with CremaGames co-founder, Enrique Paños.
A Steam Product Key for Immortal Redneck was provided by CremaGames for the Purpose of this Review.