On the Cheap – Slayin

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On the Cheap is Squinshee’s regular gander at inexpensive or free games.

Slayin (iOS)
Developer: Pixel Licker
Price: $1

Don’t drown. Smack the golf ball into the hole. Solve for X. First lessons like these are oversimplifications that border on irony. Such advice doesn’t elude the blood-soaked, boob-filled world (not to be mistaken with bloody boobs) of A Song of Ice and Fire – or Game of Thrones to most of you. When Jon Snow endows his young stepsister Arya with a petit fencing sword, “Stick them with the pointy end,” concludes his first bit of advice.

Jon’s lecture was actually in reference to Slayin, where a poke of your cutlass obliterates creatures. You control a knight, always in motion, moving left and right within a confined turf. The pixilated partisan moves about like a Russian squat dancer, which clanks his helmet’s visor. Outweighing this comical display is his sillier habit of holding all shapes and sizes of blades like a lance. It may be poor swordsmanship, but you’ll bayonet through leagues of gaumless oozes, skull-belching tombstones, and winged serpents with ease.

Reenacting these Gettysburgh charges will end as poorly in Slayin as it did for the southern Civil War soldiers. Creatures invade from the ground and sky in overwhelming numbers. Zombies linger underground, unearthing themselves when you draw near. Bats drop nasty purple goop that should be avoided like a disheveled turd on the sidewalk.

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Positioning yourself in less hectic areas and pivoting your scimitar of mass destruction with timely hops is critical to overcoming the odds. So is purchasing armaments from grumbling Ewoks. These prove handy for the milestone boss fights, like the stampeding Minotaur or the topless nymph within a piranha plant.

With copious treacheries, death is inescapable. But demise brings fame ­— a form of earned currency that’s proportional to your score. You can splurge on that mossy headstone to flaunt your highscore epitaph or unlock the knave and wizard heroes. They have their allures, like the rogue’s hip side daggers and the shaman’s elemental spell books. Even so, I gravitate toward the knight. Sticking monsters with the pointy end of corpulent broadswords is what Slayin is all about. Right, Jon?

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