Gurumin: A Monstrous Adventure Review
Gurumin: A Monstrous Adventure was a cute little game that originally came to the PSP eight years ago. Recently, it got cleaned up and put out on Steam and GOG. The PSP original is still downloadable on your new-age Vita, while the new PC downloadables tout prettier, HD-ified graphics.
In this game, you play a young girl, Parin, who finds herself moving in with her absent-minded mayor grandfather. Her new hometown is quite mundane, but her life quickly escalates as she is introduced to a portal to a monster world, meets strange creatures in need of her help to defeat a mysterious enemy, and locates a mysterious drill with a legendary history of defeating an evil dragon. It all sounds like a hackneyed anime plot, and it plays out that way, but it is definitely presented in a cute and fun way that is memorable.
I was worried at first reviewing this title on my PC, as I tend to be a console/controller gamer, and my recent change of PCs currently leaves me without a decent controller setup, but I was pleased to learn the mouse control is quite intuitive. Simply aim the cursor in the direction you want to go, right click to move, left click to attack. With a second hand on the space bar for jumping, I soon found myself controlling the game just as easily as on my consoles.
Gurumin has a variety of mini-games, special outfits, bonuses that push replay value, and a charm that drags you back in. The battle and upgrade system are fun, from a basic or charged attack to spins and flying combo moves. I was never really able to get into the rhythmic attack style, where if you can time your attacks to the beats of the music you can add critical damage hits, but it was a neat take on damage variety. After a battle, you collect coins and leftover junk from your enemies' destroyed equipment, which can in turn be used to upgrade your own. Equipment is unique, with goggles, bandanas, and monkey suits replacing your average RPG armors, and the mysterious drill being your entire repirtoire of offensive equipment, although certain elemental additions help you take down enemies and finish puzzles easier.
With the simplistic, kid-friendly gameplay, challenges and a variety of difficulty levels to keep you coming back, and a charming aesthetic style, Gurumin is definitely a wonderful purchase option for anyone looking for a lighthearted take on the action-RPG setup. You know the drill, check it out on Steam, GOG, or your PSP/Vita today!
Score 4 out of 5
Thanks to the publishers for providing a copy for review