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Dust: An Elysian Tail (PC) Review

Dust: An Elysian Tail is the closest I have felt to playing in a cartoon for a very long time. I love this game; I will play it again and again (who knows maybe a third time after that). Dust is a cartoon styled beat-‘em-up, with many RPG elements. Comedy and enjoyment abound in this game, all the way from its many references, to its amazing gameplay.

Amazing graphics set the tone for what is to be an amazing game.

The game starts out on a very weird note, as a talking sword wakes up a sleeping blue cat-creature named Dust (I told you it starts out on a weird note) and tells him to rise and claim the Blade of Ahrah.  As he does this however, a small orange and white bat-like creature flies up and tells him to stop right where he is. It turns out Dust, the main character, has a bad case of amnesia (typical.) and does not remember very much at all. The talking sword tells Fidget, the little bat-creature not to worry, and that Dust is the one that awoke him. Things go downhill from there, however, as a group of enemies approach to attack them, which leads me into the gameplay section of this review…

This is Fidget, the game’s main sense of comic relief.

Dust’s combat consists mainly of clicking the left mouse button over and over, unless you’re creative like me, and like to see how many different combos you can make.  Holding down the right mouse button will result in what is called a Dust Storm; Dust will spin his sword round and round to do damage to all nearby enemies, combining this with Fidget’s ability will cause small balls of light to rocket around and hit all on screen enemies. It really is a game winner, because honestly, I spammed that attack for most of the campaign.

One of the RPG elements I referred to earlier is the upgrade system.  You can upgrade Dust’s health bar, as well as his other features, including Fidget’s extremely OP attack. It might not be much, but it gives a little more variety to a fairly straight-forward game some spice- always a good thing!

The decent amount of gaming industry references in Dust isn’t too bad either, though they do range from the slightly over-done, to the extremely obvious and in your face.  What I mean is, the first reference found in the game was to Castlevania of all things (a decidedly different in tone game than this). After destroying a wall, more often than not you will find a healing item called (and this is a direct quote by the way…) “A Mysterious Wall Chicken”. Another reference is the slightly more obvious fact that the first shopkeeper you encounter in the game says “Welcome Stranger…What’re ya buyin’?”  in a voice very similar to that of the Merchant in Resident Evil 4.  

The final reference I’m going to bring up is the extremely obvious “reference” to Super Meat Boy; and when I put quotations around that, it’s because it’s less of a reference, and more just including him in the game fully.  In the Prologue of the game, you will find a locked chest that requires four keys to open. Using four keys on the locks, you will open the cage to free a very happy looking Super Meat Boy…who then runs off…interesting.

this is the gravelly voiced merchant I referred to a moment ago

Final Thoughts

My final thoughts on Dust are simply that the game is very fun, I enjoy it thoroughly and will undoubtedly play it again.

The graphics are flawless, the gameplay is enjoyable (if not slightly repetitive), the references and RPG bits are amazing and the story is very good. I highly suggest you download this game if you need something to do on a weekend, because it is well worth the price and time.  

About Jake Callier

Five parts actual review, 2 parts sarcasm, 2 parts bad puns, and one part self loathing = one of my game reviews.

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