Slayaway Camp: Butcher’s Cut – Xbox One Review

Slayaway Camp: Butcher’s Cut is a new puzzle game developed by Blue Wizard Digital, founded by Jason Kapalka; co-founder of PopCap of Peggle fame. The developer has turned the classic ‘sliding’ puzzle game and turned it into a violent, sleek and unique puzzler, but is it worth slashing out money for?

The idea is relatively simple, with new mechanics being gradually introduced. You play as the camp killer, where you must move your killer up, down, left or right in order to slide across the board to kill off the camp residents. The catch? You slide until you hit something, be it a wall, fence or a victim. However, the more you progress, the more you wits you will have to have about you. You can push victims into water and onto various other hazards. Another key element to the puzzler involves the victims being scared out of their wits, meaning if you kill a victim next to another victim, that victim will move away in the opposite direction. This adds a whole new depth to the slider puzzle genre, where some puzzles will have you scratching your brain for hours, until something just ‘clicks’ and everything becomes all too obvious, without ever being frustrating allowing for that ‘just one more attempt’ effect.

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Slayaway Camp: Butcher’s Cut is a collection of all Slayaway Camp titles and add-ons released thus far, having previously been available on steam for over a year. The game offers over 300 levels, with plenty of customisation for added value. There are a plethora of killers to unlock and gore packs. Gore packs allow you to change up your kills offering you around 60 different variations. All of these can be purchased from the in-game store using coins collected throughout all of the puzzles. After you complete a puzzle, a simple quick mini-game ensues requiring you to press A at the right time, on a slider that moves from left and right, which determines the amount of coins you win. A nice way to boost the amount of coins you receive.

The aesthetics for Slayaway Camp simulates that of a classic video store. Each stage comprises of around 10 levels each, and each one themed around a specific camp. Each stage is resembled by a VHS tape that you load up, where you can then pick which level you’d like to attempt, along with any ‘bonus footage’ or ‘deleted scenes’, aka bonus levels. All of this is a nice touch which only deepens the immersion of classic horror titles, with smooth transition between all the menus and loading up the levels.

Overall, Slayaway Camp: Butcher’s Cut is an excellent puzzler, and the first of its kind on Xbox One. Although not quite ‘up there’ with the likes of Peggle, it still makes for an excellent game, with plenty to unlock and will keep you busy hours upon end.

Slayaway Camp: Butcher’s Cut is available to purchase from the Xbox Store, priced at £13.59.

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