Neighbours can be the best of friends or they could easily be the bane of your life. But whatever you think of yours, Fermenter Games has your neighbourly community teaming up in all out warfare. You’ll need to fight a wide range of fierce enemies to clean the streets, gardens and white picket fences. But will this forged alliance reign supreme?
Neighborhorde takes the form of an isometric twin-stick shooter with a distinctive art style. Your mission is simple. Survive through several days and nights against a horde of enemies, with each day delivering its own boss fight. And that’s about as detailed a story as you will get from the title.
You begin with the choice of two levels of difficulty, which in this case is sadly limited to just easy or normal. Then you’re thrown straight into the action with a short tutorial to show you the ropes. Starting out you can play alone, or join up with up to three others for a couch co-op experience.
Twin-stick shooters usually come in the guise of top down or side scrolling formats. However, the isometric, on the ground aspect offers a somewhat fresh experience for the genre, whilst also delivering its own challenges. Once you’ve got to grips with the basics, you’re thrown straight in against your first horde of enemies.
You’re free to roam the relatively small area to fight the hordes, but staying close together is your best and encouraged choice from the outset. As you wander the map as a clan of four, you’ll be brandished as being in the ‘friend zone’. And it is this area that will help you the most. Whilst in this zone you’re much more likely to be healed faster if knocked out, and can also lead to a great bonus and chance of picking up weapons.
The weapons themselves are highly diverse ranging from a water pistol to a bow and arrow. And just as crazy are the enemies you’ll face. These are procedurally generated and change each time you play. Ranging from ghosts to the downright weird (you fight feet at one point), the constant change in enemies keeps things fresh. The same goes for the end of day boss fights. No two playthroughs are the same. You also get to add to your arsenal and special moves after each horde.
And this is where Neighborhorde struggles. The weapons feel very much the same. You can’t even really notice much difference in how they fire or look in hand. Combine this with chaotic action that soon ramps up after your first few hordes and the fun soon starts to drain away.
That being said, there is fun to be had in short sharp bursts. It’s a game that’s best played with at least two of you, solely because the AI tends to be inconsistent. If you’re playing alone you may soon find your bot buddies roaming away in different directions leading to a disbanding of the safer friend zone area.
Neighborhorde is a charming little title to look at, with a fresh feel to it. However too many unpredictable moments will leave you more frustrated than satisfied. They say everybody needs good neighbours, but this is one neighbourhood you may want to pass straight by.
You can purchase Neighborhorde in the Xbox Store, priced £3.99
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