Bullet Witch Xbox 360 Review

May 30, 2010 by  
Filed under Reviews & Features, Xbox 360, Xbox

Dressed in black and possessing magical powers, Bullet Witch’s heroine may very well be a witch. But one lacking the warts, large hat and all round ugliness, evidently so because it simply wouldn’t be as marketable towards those strange types that are attracted to pixilated women.

Bullet Witch takes place in a post apocalyptic future, where, due to varying circumstances, much of mankind has been wiped out. You play the titular witch: Alicia, and are tasked with wiping out the demonic army by unsurprisingly utilizing magic and – as the title so blatantly suggests – lots of bullets too, which again isn‘t very witch like, but still oh so very satisfying.

Gameplay consists of shooting lots of enemies, with the occasional use of magic and the odd puzzle sections, which task you with hunting down colour coded brains, that when defeated will bring down the corresponding coloured barrier impeding your progress. Whilst there’s not many enemy types and the majority of the game is spent fighting the same type, on occasion you’re pitted against snipers that always aim for the head, thus killing you in a single shot and welcoming a more considered strategy to the game. Likewise for the tanks and helicopters, which can only be destroyed by magic.

There are boss encounters too. Surprisingly these are few in number, but are generally quite memorable, particularly one, which sees you standing atop an airborne plane, whilst facing off against a gargantuan flying whale.

At the end of each stage, your overall performance is evaluated and points are rewarded. These can then be spent on purchasing new armaments, which consist of a shotgun, a cannon and a deadly Gatling gun. Alicia’s health and magic bars can also be extended and finally existing spells can be levelled up and new ones can also be bought and added to you repertoire.

Speaking of magic, this is one of the games most entertaining of aspects. Alicia can produce a wall, useful as makeshift cover particularly in a jam. Ammo can be charged with elemental properties, telekinesis can be used to gratifyingly push objects into enemies, ravens can be summoned to cause confusion and a simple rose can impale the demons with spears. But it’s the biggest magic spells that most impresses, at least in regards to visual astonishment and all round destruction: enemies can be fried with lighting, blown away by a tornado and crushed by meteors, all of which leave a hail of destruction in their path.

Whilst this magic looks stunning, overall the visuals are average. There’s dreadful pop-up in abundance and the frame rate, although generally acceptable, never manages to be completely smooth. Such a fun game is deserving of a better engine and this is sadly the games biggest flaw.

The games brevity could also be a problem to some. But although it only features six levels and can be completed in around six hours, this is still not as troublesome as it may seem. Achievement chasers are rewarded for completing the game on each of the difficulty levels and upon clearing the story once, your skills then carry over to your next session. There’s also the promise of downloadable levels to look forward to.

Bullet Witch’s engine, has seemingly been cursed with the warts and ugliness that passed by Alicia, but in no way does this stop the game from being a highly entertaining shooter. If there is to be a sequel, we can only hope that some anti aging cream is rubbed on and those warts are treated, thus allowing the game to reach its full potential.