Noitu Love: Devolution originally launched on Steam back in 2008, more than eight years ago. After playing through the game on the Wii U it seems to be a perfect match for Nintendo platforms, and I’m somewhat puzzled why it took so long to get the game ported.
The game is an arcade beat-em-up, where players must tap on enemies with the stylus in order to attack them. The gameplay makes full use of the touch-screen. There are also platforming elements within the game, as players must use the shoulder buttons to jump through levels whenever they are not fighting.
Overall, the gameplay works and feels great. Levels are incredibly diverse and all of the environments feel unique. I loved seeing what each new level brought to the table. The best part of the game, hands down, were the boss battles. Each level usually had about three boss battles that were well-crafted and required innovative strategies to beat. In one battle, for example, players must make use of piano keys to defeat the boss. I have never seen, or played, anything like that before.
The game’s retro style and music style match the gameplay in excellence. The square shape of the screen, not fully 720p, works in the game’s favor rather than dragging it down. Additionally, the electronic chiptune music never got old. The game was truly a delight to work through.
Unfortunately, the fun doesn’t last for long. With about half a dozen stages, the game takes anywhere from half an hour up to an hour to beat. That’s pathetic. Even as a downloadable game, a half hour of gameplay for $10 is shameful. Fortunately, after beating the game you unlock a new character with a completely new moveset to try out. The real fun in this game lies in re-playing levels and aiming for a new high score, as in an actual arcade. If replaying games, again and again, isn’t your sort of thing, then perhaps it would be better to wait for a sale before purchasing Noitu Love: Devolution.
Another issue with the game, albeit not a big one, was the story. I had absolutely no idea what was going on. Granted, the game didn’t need much of a storyline to function well. I still would expect a story, if present in a game, to make sense rather than be a jumbled mess of words.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed playing through Noitu Love: Devolution, even though I would have preferred to have more of it. The levels were varied and the boss battles were spectacular. It is such a shame that the game does not have more meat on it, because in the current form I can only recommend Noitu Love: Devolution to the biggest arcade fans.