Review: Let Them Come

My experience with Let Them Come changed over time. From enjoying it, to hating it, back to enjoying it, and eventually nonplussed. It’s not terrible, but also not great, and clearly not designed for console.

In essence, you are a man on a big gun turret. You use the left stick to move the turret up and down, and pull the trigger to fire. Aliens rush at you. This is the entire game. If it sounds unintuitive, it is but it’s not insurmountable. It feels like it was built as a keyboard flash game.

As you smash aliens with bullets, their guts splatter over the walls and you get money. You can spend this money on upgrades (via a confusing inventory/shop system) and then get back to shooting more aliens. You have basically a low lane and a high lane and must manage shooting between these two.

Any that get through damage you, and a little face icon in the bottom of the screen shows how messed up you are (think classic DOOM). I love this, I think it’s brilliant, and it always gives me some consolation if I lose, seeing my bloody smashed up face.

As a time passer then, this is fine. As the baddies get bigger, and bosses turn up, the core mechanic starts to break down. To fight these bigger, badder baddies, you need upgrades. The upgrades you need to take them down, are mostly consumable. So in effect you end up literally paying for every single bullet you need to beat the bosses. The problem here is that these upgrades are expensive. So if you are fighting a boss, and you use all your special ammo and die, you’ll need to play for another four or five times to get enough cash to buy the ammo, to fight the boss again. And therein lies the major problem with Let Them Come.

It feels a bit as though it’s a poorly designed in-app purchase structure, requiring you to pay to progress but rather than pay, you have to grind in-game currency. It’s a major turn off, and with a game as simple as this the hook would be constant progression and power to fight off more interesting enemies, but it’s two steps back for every one step forward.

Visually the pixel look is nice and the soundtrack is unoffensive but there’s probably not enough here to keep gamers interested.

Reviewed on PS4

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