At first glance Gunpoint may appear old-fashioned in its design, reminding you of times beyond Window 98 because of its simplistic graphic style and UI. But once you plunge into the game for just a few minutes you will soon be caught the interesting storyline and catchy jazzy soundtrack which perfectly sets the mood of the game. Impersonating the freelance spy “Richard Conway” you’ll be unravel multiple story twists, make long-term decisions and unlock various endings during the process.
While the dialogue-options in this game are limited, they still make you smile more than once. This is due to the fact that dialogue options are fitting our age, conveyed via smartphone chat conversation. And since your protagonist isn’t really the brightest, you’ll have quite a lot of funny dialogue options at your disposal. The story however is rather twisted and leaves room for interpretation. Sometimes you have to find further hidden evidence to unravel the mysteries and make the right dialogue choice. But whatever you say and do: I’m sure you will enjoy the storyline quite a bit.
The game features simple but effective mechanics, the first being your “jumping trousers” that let you jump and fall huge heights without takin
g damage. This is a core mechanic of the game, letting you jump around in- and outside buildings, sticking to walls and climbing ceilings like a frog. You can also chose to pounce at enemies and smash in windows, but that will most-likely attract further guards or lessen your rating. While you have many options at your disposal, the core of the game is made clear right at the beginning: you should avoid confrontation and act like a ghost. Once spotted by guards you will most likely die in one shot, which isn’t much of a problem as the game saves abundantly in just a few-second intervals.
And what makes a spy a really good spy? Of course: gadgets! One of the other core mechanics of the game is the usage of “Crosslink and Wirejack”, which you attain in your first real mission. These gadgets allow you to access and reroute differently colored circuits in a building. This mechanic is where the game really shines, as you can smartly reroute light-switches to trap-doors or distract guards for a few seconds once you darken a room. Smart usage of your crosslink is what makes or breaks your rating during the level, as non-lethal force (or even avoid being seen at all) gives you more money in the end. This, combined with optional goals adds a lot of re-play value, pushing you to re-try a level again, but this time using a smarter approach.
With ongoing progress you will also unlock further gizmos, allowing you to silently break glass, boobytrap electronics or even rewire the guns of guards, resulting in sometimes funny moments. However, the usage of your gear comes at the cost of battery power, which you can only replenish by finding rare batteries in the levels or purchasing them for money. Aside form the All gadgets feel different and useful in a way, leaving it up to you how to solve your missions.
All in days work!
Gunpoint was a brief but fun experience. The levels are challenging, the storyline is funny and interesting enough for me to pick this game up again sometime soon just to see what other options i have. Besides consisting of just a few pixels, “Richard Conway” is a sympathetic, dorky character that perfectly fills the role of a goofy spy quite well. Aside from its simplicity the game is easy to pick up and quite challenging if you want to end a level with a perfect “A+” rating. All this comes in a well-rounded package with fitting music and in-game-dialogue that keeps you playing until the very end.