Coining “Not all heroes get paychecks”, there isn’t a lot not to love about Aggro Crab’s game “Going Under” published by Team17 Digital. You never know what sort of hero is standing next to you and who would have thought it could be just a lowly intern in this humorous dungeon crawler as she is sent off to fight a volley of lower level ‘bottom feeders’ in just such an addictive manner.
You are Jacquie, a bright eyed and bushy tailed, career driven girl, trying to make a name in the industry driven city of Neo Cascadia. Being the newest marketing intern at the mogal giants, a company called ‘Cubicle’, it is your job to do the bidding of the bosses at their newly acquired asset, a soft drink company called ‘Fizzle’.
What job you might ask? Well clearing out the basement for starters. OH, but watch out there are goblins in there, people that were once failed assets from the past, now twisted creatures of resentment.
No biggie. The game is very whimsical with it’s corporate jabs at consumerism, also very meta by telling you to just imagine they have health bars to smash down with whatever item you can get a hold off. Much of the plot is told with dialogue conversations between characters across the screen and while the premise is so simple, it’s so enjoyable to watch conversations unfold.
Gameplay is also very simple, and oh so addictive, I had no idea I would be this hooked. Starting in the hub, you are sent down a slide (yep, like any hipster corporation, there must be a slide) to the basement to fight rooms on enemies. This is the fun part, your weapons are pretty much anything in each room. Want to smash a goblin with a cactus? Sure go for it. Want to shoot staples out a stapler like a railgun? Sure, its fun as hell. Want to swing a keyboard around like you’re Indiana Jones? Go nuts. Most items are at your disposal to shoot, throw or hurl at the vast array of enemies.
Each run, yes run, as you only progress a little further each time, into the dungeons/rooms is progressed more easily by completing challenges by other staff members. Talking to these kooky employees will give you objectives to complete that earn you perks for your character as a sort of mentoring system. Temporary perks, such as increased damage, bombs or increased health, along with other more creative traits can also be found in secret rooms throughout as you dive deeper down the floors.
There are also stores to buy perks, weapons and health as you go purchased with money you pick up along your journey. Gameplay is challenging enough to be persistent and want to keep coming back for more but easy enough to master and feel like you will eventually get to the boss battles.
Graphically, the game is also quite simple with bold, colouring blocking of shapes, something that seems to be all the rave in 2020. The basic characters, while simple, make up for it in charm through the dialogue, minute detail they do have and quirky personality. The upbeat albeit repetitive music rounds out a company I definitely would want to work at, let alone smash monsters in.
Overall, this game was really something I didn’t expect and I was blindsided by the addictiveness of it’s gameplay. With ‘Fall Guys’ and ‘Among Us’ showing that little indie darlings can make a killing in the scene, it’s amazing how these little studios get what the audience wants; a hassle free, fun time. I couldn’t fault this enjoyable time but If this game had a Co-op /Multiplayer aspect who knows what they could achieve.
- Addictive gameplay
- Simple but bold graphics
- Charming and cute characters
- Creative use of weaponry
- Easy to pick up and play
- Repetitive tunes
- Some might find it too basic