Arsonist Heaven (Xbox One) Review with stream

A 2D side-scrolling action platformer, Arsonist Heaven gives players an excuse to go on a murderous rampage. The goal of each stage is to kill all enemies by giving them a fiery, horrible death.

Each stage is a self-contained, slightly maze-like environment filled with typical jumps, platforms, and hazards. Navigating the verticality of each stage is made easier thanks to the rocket blast jetpack double jump, the game’s main gimmick outside of killing everything with a flamethrower.  If the jetpack meter in the upper corner is full, the player can double tap the jump button to unleash a very vertical leap.  It isn’t a true jetpack, so you cannot float around at will, but these mega blasting jumps can also be entertaining. 

There are a few issues with this enthusiastic flame shooter that really hold back the experience and fun factor. First is the awkward control scheme. With no option to adjust, the “B” button jumps, “A” shoots, and “X” reloads when playing on an Xbox console. This is completely backwards and unintuitive from the norm, so the control scheme never becomes comfortable. 

The other issue is the unfair and cheap difficulty level.  Enemies take way too many hits and they walk back and forth in a predictable but fast paced manor that leaves no window to attack them without taking damage. When you take damage, there is no invulnerability period either so you can lose all your health in a second. Reloading also takes way too long and waiting for the double jump meter to refill is tedious.  Ammo is also limited, the camera cannot pan, and there are plenty of blind jumps. To put this in perspective, most of my stream embedded here was spent just trying to beat stage 2. At least earning each of the game’s dozen Achievements are straightforward since one unlocks with the completion of each of the first twelve stages. The music is also pretty decent but awkwardly skips from time to time.

There are plenty of flaws in Arsonist Heaven that make the experience less fun, but it is a five-dollar game. So, to be fair, there are worse ways to spend your five bucks but this definitely isn’t the best low-cost EastAsiaSoft title available. 

SCORE: 5/10

Also Try: Firegirl Hack’n Splash Rescue  

Don’t Forget About: Kill It With Fire

Also Watch: the movie Backdraft  

By: Zachary Gasiorowski, Editor in Chief

Twitter: @ZackGaz

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