Article by Alyx Jones

Developer: Puuba
Composer: Christopher Hoag
Sound Design: David Bricken

Meet Doug McGrave, a slightly arrogant * ahem *, who is cursed in the first cinematic of the game, to save a village. Now your wealth, powers and weapons are gone! If you fancy playing as a blonde, lycra-clad knight then “The Weaponographist” is out now on Windows and Mac!

Putting it simply, this is a hack and slash with a narrative, perhaps a fantasy version of “The Binding of Isaac”. A dungeon exploration game with randomly generated enemies, to some extent. Although the amount of time you might be spending playing this challenging game, you will probably notice it’s not completely random and pick up on things such as the “purple chainsaw men” appearing frustratingly right before the boss level.


Upon arriving at the title screen the player is greeted with quite a pretty soundscape; with wolf howls and cricket noises with slightly mysterious drones at the higher end of the mix. This is probably my favourite piece of audio from the game.

The music in the cinematics work well, takiing a synth-based approach. This works well in the fantasy context and is synchronised nicely with key points in the opening cinematic. However having said that, it’s lacking a little depth and dynamics. Even though the game is a fun hack and slash attempt, the developers chose to have a narrative. Therefore the music should possibly work a little harder to reflect the anger behind the witches curse, as well as the trauma of our not-so-friendly knight, who has just had all his belongings stolen from him. In terms of production, the music is mixed well that is clean and well balanced, but could have possibly added a little more low end.

Once we get to base camp, we do ironically get a little more bass in the mix. I do enjoy the themes as they are realized slightly differently here than in the cinematics. There is a strong electric piano, that adds something to the music that was perhaps lacking in the introduction to the game. Again, I want to mention the sound design because the magician summoning a broomstick and the blacksmith making her weapons sound really good, cutting nicely through the mix when appropriate.

weaponographist4When it comes to the dungeon, the music picks up and takes a loop based approach. The music itself is appropriate, well produced and has plenty of elements tying it together, but is limited in this case by not being reactive. Often within the track the music might pickup or breakdown but isn’t related to the visuals, as if it is more of a backdrop rather than reflective of events on screen. There are small changes that could have made a big difference, such as fading the music out, or having an “all clear” downbeat track when all the enemies of a particular dungeon floor are defeated. This would give the player a slight rest from the upbeat music before they proceed to the next room, rather than it playing continuously, without differentiating between rooms effectively. Since it can often take a while to complete a depth, varying the music slightly would have helped reduce the fatigue of listening to the same few minutes of music on loop for two hours. This would be similar to the way the partially randomly generated characters mean you’re not just repeating exactly the same mechanics every time you play through the dungeon to get to the boss.


Overall the game is definitely fun to play and the sound design is really effective, fitting the context of a fantasy hack and slash well. The music does sound great and reflects the fun gameplay, but lacks slightly in implementation and emotional depth. We hope you enjoy the release of this challenging new game as much as we did, and wish you luck in getting much further!

Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/329240/
Official: http://puuba.com/weaponographist/
Puuba Twitter: https://twitter.com/PuubaDanny
Christopher Hoag Twitter: https://twitter.com/christopherhoag


Article by Alyx Jones


Edited by Sam Hughes


Uploaded 29/04/15
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