Slayin’s main goal is to overwhelm you. It’s a fast-paced action game that throws waves of enemies at you until you die. Sure, the game is divided into levels, and you can upgrade your equipment as you progress, but sooner or later you’ll be overwhelmed. And then, if you’re like us, you’ll do it all over again from the beginning.
The only controls you have in Slayin are to move left, right, and jump. Thankfully, they’re perfectly calibrated so that when you get hit it’s because you messed up or had nowhere safe to go. Attacking happens automatically, so you don’t have to worry about that. You just plow into an enemy to kill it.
Each level throws more enemies– and more intimidating enemies– on the screen. Slimes are the most common, and all they do is slide around on the ground, waiting to be speared by your sword. Then you’ll encounter flying enemies and monsters that fling projectiles, and enemies that rise and fall across the screen, like Medusa heads in Castlevania. Once you clear a stage, you fight a boss. Each boss has its own patterns that you can memorize for your next encounter. When you die, you start from square one, and you fight the same enemies on the same stages, capped by the same bosses.
The game is so basic that your focus quickly lands on the extra stuff you can do in the game. As you kill enemies, you earn coins that you can spend to upgrade your sword, your speed, and your luck. You can also replenish health and buy body armor, but you never have an abundance of cash, so you have to spend it wisely.
Like in a lot of iOS games, three achievements are always available. You earn them for doing things like killing 20 slimes and getting your hero to level 10 without jumping. When you die, various stats are added up, and you’re awarded a certain number of Fame Points. Fame Points are the only thing that carries over from life to life, so the game is really about how much FP you can rack up each run. An in-game store lets you spend FP to unlock things like two other character classes (a wizard and a knave), additional controller skins, costumes, and extra game modes.
Slayin may be a very basic game, but it’s also loads of fun, and it kept us coming back for more. It doesn’t have changing terrain like Spellsword, but the enemies and bosses are fantastic, and unlocking goodies between rounds is great fun. Anyone who appreciates a tough, rewarding game should check it out.