Reaper of nightmaresThe procedurally generated scenes are as aggressive as the thrash metal motifs that drive them. Conceived as a heist shooter, it’s a heist that revels in retro visuals, blistering speed and the ensuing bloodbath spectacle.

In the new turn, it procedurally generates levels, meaning that every time you die or start over, everything changes. Aesthetics vary by chapter, moving from water pits and stark tombs to hospital wards and cities; and, if you can find them, space stations where pets can be purchased to help you solve mysteries. The layouts are mostly unique with each new playthrough, but hitting switches, finding keys, or locating suspicious walls to break through are constant. At its best, the procedural element creates levels that feel intentional, which is impressive given how layered it is. That said, it’s not perfect, with sections that are occasionally reworked, dead ends, and on one occasion, an impassable early jump that forced us to leave a stage.

Nightmare Reaper is packed with content. Upgrades, buffs, rebuffs and all that jazz. There are secrets and power-ups everywhere, hordes of enemy types and over 80 weapons to grab, all with mod capabilities that let you freeze the undead or turn an entire arena into a burning inferno. You can choose one weapon to take to the next stage, and the loot progression element encourages you to collect gold and find hidden rooms littered with treasures. When you buy new cartridges for the game, you get new skill trees on the GameBoy Advance SP subscreen, which can be accessed at any time to get a bunch of upgrades. While gaining a new skill, you can play a rudimentary 2D stage that mimics the likes of Radius or Super Mario Bros. 3.

A shootout knee-deep in bones and blood, combining dry humor with ultra-violence and coloring the screen in all kinds of pixel crimson colors. It doesn’t provide the same feedback as something similar Cruel Doom, but it spits out dense, impressive hordes that you can slice apart. The music is wonderful, p DOOM EternalAndrew Gulschult conjures up a predictable but perfectly executed set of metal tracks with thundering drums and deathly riffs. The controls are also well thought out and easy to understand.

However, there are a few caveats. In addition to the procedural element that is lacking at times, the main campaign is perhaps too bloated at about 90 levels and can become tiresome under the weight of all its bounty. Sometimes its pixelated rendering can also be confusing, especially when you’re looking for switches or keys; and many secret rooms or items are often not useful or worth looking for. The story aspect, which puts you in the shoes of a female patient in a hospital psychiatric ward, slipping in and out of nightmare worlds is interesting enough, but you have to return to your hospital room between each stage for minor aesthetic changes or something new. the page of the doctor’s diary is getting thin fast.

However, Nightmare Reaper does achieve much of what it sets out to do, pushing the boundaries with weapons, impressive abilities, and more trinkets than a fully loaded freighter. It’s at its best when it turns into a spectacular bloodbath at the whims of your creative weapon and ability choices. And despite its flaws, its brutal, adrenaline-filled thrills will make it very appealing to old-school FPS fans.