I expected Fenix Furia to be just another 2D Platformer when I dove into this game. With your typical elongated level design, where each stage was get from point A to point B without dying, you could say that wasn’t too far off from correct. Although with games such as Super Meat Boy already hanging around, does Fenix Furia have what it takes to rise to the occasion or will it fall flat like so many games before it?
While the game really does lack a story, it more than makes up for it with its intricate level design. The levels are designed in interesting ways making each new level seem easier then it actual is, but getting to the end goal without getting hit by flying slime or lasers isn’t your only objective. In each level there is a collectible to get a literal cookie, and what’s interesting about these is when you collect every cookie from a world, it unlocks a recipe to an actual dessert you can make at home, such as a Strawberry lake or a Mint ore, which I found to be a really cool idea. It not only encourages you to get all the collectibles, but it also teaches you step-by-step how to make really awesome desserts as a reward.
Something in my opinion that makes a game like this really stand out is its replay ability. Would I want to come back, sit down, and replay each level after I’ve already defeated it? Now normally with 2D platformers like this I usually wouldn’t bother, but this games split screen co-op actually made me want to come back and play this with friends. Playing side by side with a friend besting each other every stage gave the game a second breath of life that I feel like it needed. With a game like Fenix Furia, I feel like you can only recreate a stage so many times before it just becomes frustrating to want to continue. Even with bonus games such as arcade mode or Fenix’s box, it still all feels the same, but when you add in that split screen multiplayer element it gives it that extra bit to want to keep unlocking new stages so you and your friends can keep playing together.
While designing levels is definitely something important in a game like this, I feel if it plays badly then it doesn’t matter how fantastic your levels are, the game is just going to fall flat on its face. Fenix Furia is a game that achieved good design work on creating its worlds, but when it comes to the controls of the game I feel they did fall just short. When controlling your character, you are able to infinitely jump, dash quickly side to side, and wall slide. Normally that’s all you would really need, but the controls just don’t handle as well as you’d like them to in a game all about perfect timing and precise movements. Your jumps and dashes are always the same length making it convenient to plan out movements, but when you add teleporters, breakable blocks, avoiding enemies and lasers, even the slightest mess up with your jump or dash will have you rocketing to your death. It’ll have you wanting to delete the game off your system on the harder levels.
Now as someone who really likes the smaller details in a game, such as the art, music, or even voice acting, this game was the perfect example of a fifty-fifty split. The art work in this game was done very well; each set of worlds is bright and vibrant when it needs to be. The colors they chose were excellent choices. It’s just very pleasing to the eyes as you’re playing through the levels. The music on the other hand was honestly bad. While playing through most of the game the music would skip a lot. Half the stages it wouldn’t play on, and overall I played without sound most of the game because the mostly silent stages with random bits of sounds thrown in wasn’t very appealing to me. That being said though when I actually was able to hear music playing it wasn’t bad music. It fit the game and the stages well and made you pumped to play further.
Overall this game was a hit and miss with me. While certain stages were fun and challenging, others just make you want to put the controller down, sell your console and never think about how after five hundred deaths and an hour of your life you still couldn’t get that one cookie. Difficulty is what these games are all about, but when they get overly difficulty it’s going to make you want to stop playing unless you’re a fan of the Dark Souls series that is. Fenix Furia is a game everyone should try at least once because whether you’re playing with friends, or just playing it to pass the time, good 2D platformers are a dime a dozen, but it’s the ones that keep you coming back that age to be great indie classics.
Final Score: 3/5