Rogue Stache is a game about mustaches, and an alien race hellbent on taking them away from you.
I got to take a look at it while in Early Access, and, that’s why I have to start my review with “Your mileage my vary” When I first started playing, I thought, “Ugh, this looks like garbage indie crap.” but, it’s not. It’s pretty fun when you get into it. I couldn’t use steam to take screenshots, so, sorry about the sparse selection. I grabbed a few, but nowhere near the normal amount I choose from when writing an article. It’s okay though, I’ll get you a trailer.
Graphically, the game isn’t super impressive, but, it’s got it’s little quirky things that I really enjoy. For example, when you’re using the mouse and keyboard, your character’s arm rotates where you move the mouse, this just means making less animations, of course, which is good for the developer team, but it feels awkward… until I realized while I was running away from an enemy I was pointing the weapon upside down behind me firing blindly while trying to do multiple things at once… it seemed like something the only guy who still had his mustache in a mysterious space ship would do.
The music is standard fare, nothing to write home about, but, I didn’t feel like the music was jarring or out of place. It seemed like your basic rogue-lite diddy instead of a crazy space opera, which… because it’s a rogue-lite, music isn’t something super important. It is good to know though, that as simple as the music is, it’s not a huge distraction, it doesn’t catch you off guard or force you to pause to listen to it because it’s great. It just fits in there and stays out of the way, like a good soundtrack should do. All of the voice work sounds like it was done by the developer of the game. It’s NOT good, but, I think that’s why it’s good.
The platforming feels weird. You can double jump, which is neat, and then dash in the air. You can wall slide, and jump off the walls like in Megaman X, which is pretty sweet, but, in the high octane pointing in every direction to shoot random flying things that are trying to kill you world, all of this together seems to be overwhelming at times. I think overwhelming is a good thing, though.
Without significant groups of enemies, this game would feel boring and lifeless, but, when you run into an area with a sizable group and you have one of the spectacular weapon options, such as the Acid Pistol, you’ll really enjoy yourself.
The reloading seems weird, I didn’t think I’d like having to reload in a game like this, but, it works – it sometimes puts you in hairy situations (Hah!) where you’re running for your life while waiting for the bar to fill.
There are a pretty good selection of weapons, your starter pistol (with infinite ammo) all the way up to flamethrowers, grenades, a lightsabre, and the death ray. If you happen to have a low-gravity ability – you can actually use the flamethrower to fly, because weapons have kick. That’s something that is both great AND annoying. Sometimes, when you’re standing on a ledge, you don’t want to be moved when you fire, but, I think it’s great that it’s in there, it requires you to always think about movement when firing.
There are hats and different styles of mustache (even a beard!), and each one changes a few things, (such as my earlier example of low-gravity) there can be up to 3 different “bonuses” on your hat, and the facial hair is mostly a benefit vs. detriment situation, such as “Lower HP, Faster reloads”.
You can level up, and it… increases your mustache power? Mustache power makes you acquire different benefits, but… from what I can tell, it’s a bar that fills up and gives you infinite ammo for awhile, and, you can add effects to it like, it’ll make you invincible and stuff. The only thing I don’t like about it, is it seems to not work on bosses, or… it wouldn’t work when I was fighting a boss and trying to use it while I had invulnerability added to it. I wish there was more explanation, but, early access.
I didn’t realize that other human beings in the levels will damage you. It seems not having facial hair makes you an evil, eyeball loving monster, even if they’ve taken your eyeballs from you. I wish they were something I could kill, who might not do damage to me, like the chickens, or, that there was some indication of them not being good guys anymore because having their facial hair taken made them crazy. The variation of enemies even in the first level is good. The bosses are random like in Rogue Legacy, and, once you defeat all 4, you get to go through a secret special door!
There are a few broken things, such as, the ammo bar looks the same no matter what gun you’re using, so, although there are 5 shots in the revolver and it takes “2” of my 10 bars when I fire it, there’s no way of knowing that without test-firing it. I can walk into spikes that are as tall as my character to take damage, instead of stopping my movement unless I fall on them. Just little things like that – but, those do not surprise me, it’s in early access.
Rogue Stache actually pretty fuckin’ cool. I can’t wait to see what improvements they come up with before release. Don’t expect an expansive amazing game, but, expect an okay little 2D Roguelike in the vein of Rogue Legacy, but with guns and mustaches.