The Messenger is a new platformer where – and I won’t go into too much detail because I just like to get stuck into these sorts of games – a ninja village is given hell by a Demon King, and that all will be solved as you, the ‘Western Hero’ is given a scroll to deliver to the top of a mountain, thus making you the titular Messenger.
That’s the jumping-off point, literally, for the 18 levels and worlds which follows, where you travel through both the past and future, which are shown, respectively, in an old-school 8-bit and 16-bit style; and when the time comes, the two timezones will collide.
The Messenger – Full Game Longplay (No Commentary) – Indie James
Some random thoughts on the game…
- I like how it brings you back to life when you die, pretty much in the same area where you died, or at least not too far from there. This comes at a fiduciary cost in terms of the items you’re picking up along the way – they’re called Time Shards, but just think coins and you’ll get it.
- Some enemies are slower, some are faster, and a combination requires a lot of thought as not everyone’s moving at the same pace!
- There’s a shop where you can upgrade your weapons and skills, but with a shopkeeper who’s deliciously sarcastic – like most of the characters in this, but I love that.
- Collect 45 Power Seals throughout the game, defeat end of level bosses, go swimming, enjoy plenty of dry humour and catchy music throughout.
- Because you’re a ninja, there are a number of poles on the first level you can whip in order to hop about upon, but while I managed this a few, it did take a lot of practice, so I’m glad this does not need to be ALWAYS counted on in order to progress. If you’re good at it, that’s great, but I ain’t no ninja! That said, an early upgrade certainly helped, as you’ll find.
As you progress, those poles become other items to jump across gaps with, as some of the baddies also change, but the idea remains the same. Hence, that adds some great variety.
I love a platformer and while I’ve never actually played a Castlevania game myself, I understand this is classed as Metroidvania, so is a combo of both that and Metroid Prime. This is first delve into such a game, and it’s wonderful fun.
Put simply, if you love platformers, you’ll love this!
The Messenger is out now on PC/Steam.
- Developer: Sabotage
- Publisher: Devolver Digital
- Players: single-player
- Subtitles: English
The Messenger – Gameplay Trailer – Devolver Digital
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.