OUR RATING: 8.5/10
In the world of action-adventure games where grim and gory themes dominate, En Garde! from Fireplace Games stands out as a breath of fresh air. This whimsical, colorful and flamboyant title puts the emphasis squarely on fun and brings back the excitement of swashbuckling swordplay.
Dynamic Swordplay and Tactical Combat
The combat system in En Garde! is the heart of the game, and it doesn’t disappoint. Players engage in thrilling sword fights, utilizing perfectly timed attacks, parries, and dodges to defeat their opponents. The game’s dueling system adds an extra layer of strategy, requiring players to master the art of combat and improvise using the environment to gain an advantage. Whether it’s vaulting over tables, kicking barrels, or lighting gunpowder trails, every fight scene in En Garde! is dynamic and exhilarating.
Challenging Gameplay and Replayability
While En Garde! may initially seem like a lighthearted and easy game, the difficulty curve ramps up significantly as players progress through the chapters. The game demands mastery of the combat mechanics, forcing players to time their attacks and defenses perfectly. The introduction of special ability attacks adds depth to the gameplay, allowing players to overcome increasingly tough bosses. For those seeking a challenge, En Garde! offers achievements for completing each chapter in under 30 minutes, as well as an Arena Mode where players can test their skills against waves of villains.
A Vibrant and Captivating World
En Garde! brings its colorful and vibrant world to life through its visuals and art style. The game’s locations are beautifully realized, with southern Spanish architecture reminiscent of the Alhambra in Granada and other historical cities. The attention to detail in the environments and character designs adds to the overall charm of the game. Additionally, the Spanish guitar-infused soundtrack perfectly complements the swashbuckling action, creating an immersive and engaging experience.
Short but Sweet
While En Garde! may not be the longest game on the market, its concise and focused approach ensures that it never overstays its welcome. The main story is divided into four chapters, offering a four to six-hour gameplay experience. However, the game’s replayability is enhanced through challenges and the Arena Mode, providing players with additional content and hours of entertainment. The short length also encourages players to revisit the game and try different strategies and playstyles.
Minor Setbacks and Limitations
En Garde! is not without its minor setbacks. The enemy variety and combat mechanics can become repetitive in the later stages of the game, potentially diminishing the overall experience. However, these limitations do not overshadow the game’s strengths and the overall enjoyment it provides.
A Promising Debut
En Garde! marks the debut title for Fireplace Games, and it’s a promising start for the developer. The game’s engaging combat system, charismatic characters, and charming aesthetic create a memorable experience that leaves players eager for more. While there is room for improvement, particularly in terms of enemy variety and gameplay depth, En Garde! showcases the potential for greatness from Fireplace Games in the future.
En Garde! stands out as a compact and charismatic swashbuckling adventure that delivers on its promise of flamboyant fun. With its engaging combat, captivating world, and entertaining story, En Garde! offers a unique and enjoyable gaming experience. While it may not be the longest game on the market, its concise nature and replayability make it a worthwhile addition to any gaming library. Whether you’re a fan of action-adventure games or simply looking for a lighthearted and entertaining experience, En Garde! is worth a try.