Switchblade Monkeys' Secret Ponchos came as a total surprise to us this year, and it truly left an amazing impression on us. Developed by a passionate group of creatively dissatisfied devs who decided to leave corporate development environments behind, their recently unveiled title was an absolute blast to play, focusing on fast paced combat in an isometric environment.
One of my favorite aspects of the game was the bold, stylized art direction by Jose Lopez, reminiscent of Jamie Hewlett's work on the Gorillaz, which looks absolutely awesome in motion. Not a surprise considering his past as a designer at companies like Hasbro, Cartoon Network and Warner Brothers.
The Spaghetti Western inspired title centers around frantic, deathmatch style gameplay in which you choose one of 6 outlaws (I chose the gatling gun and molotov wielding El Gordo) and engage in skill shot based gunplay. My gunslinger had low stamina and damage, but made up for that with a high rate of fire, health and deadly molotovs. The choice of an isometric camera truly turned this title into an all new experience, bringing out a solid tactical aspect more in tune with a fighting game.
While talking to one of the friendly devs from Switchblade Monkeys, we were also told about an awesome bounty system that will ship with the title, which consists of a persistent bounty on your head that will increase as you win more matches, perfectly in tune with the 'kill or be killed' tone of the title. The folks at Switchblade Monkeys are a truly passionate, friendly bunch and we'd highly recommend keeping an eye out for this title when it ships in 2014 for the PC and Playstation 4. Color us excited for this one, as the gameplay was ridiculously addictive.