Gamers are all too familiar with hearing comments about Castlevania-like games or Zelda-like titles, so why not take inspiration and use themes from these classic franchises? Developed by Studio Thunderhorse, Flynn: Son of Crimson attempts to be like many of the old-school titles we gamers remember fondly. However, they clearly didn’t want to be just another clone title and have taken elements from newer titles like Shovel Knight, Hollow Knight, and Dead Cells. Flynn: Son of Crimson is an amalgamation of several gaming tropes and, ironically, this makes it quite different than most like it. Here’s our look at Flynn: Son of Crimson!
Take In That 2D Art and Action
The first thing that pops out at you when you boot up Flynn: Son of Crimson is the beautiful 2D art that screams Sega Genesis or Super Nintendo. Obviously, Flynn: Son of Crimson goes for a more retro aesthetic without having just enough polish that keeps it from being outdated in visuals. Aside from the 2D art, Flynn: Son of Crimson begins showing its true strength, and that’s in the 2D platforming/combat.
Like most 2D action platformers, Flynn: Son of Crimson is all about attacking random enemies, solving simple-yet-fun puzzles, and grabbing various energy pieces that serve as the in-game currency and life energy. Combat itself is simple. You have the main sword attack, an evasive dodge—that can’t be spammed—and various strong magic powers that you’ll collect as you progress. Flynn: Son of Crimson keeps close to the old-school theme of 2D action platformer, but that’s what will appeal to most who pick this title up, that nice retro feel.
Prepare to Die...Sometimes
Flynn: Son of Crimson isn’t the hardest 2D game we’ve played—the early bits are fairly easy—but that doesn’t mean the challenge doesn’t ramp up as you gain new skills and fight different foes. Flynn’s enemies have various amounts of health. Sometimes they even have a stagger meter that, when maxed, allows Flynn precious seconds to unleash attacks before the enemy can retaliate. You’ll want to master timing and when to press on an enemy quickly in Flynn: Son of Crimson as boss battles will test your old-school gaming prowess quite often. Thankfully, death comes at a 5% cost of your red crystals, and that only makes the game slightly tough.
Been There and Seen It
The unfortunate reality is that Flynn: Son of Crimson, like we mentioned before, feels like a game we’ve already played before. Even with the sharp pixel graphics and solid 2D action, Flynn’s quest rarely ever feels unique. Go around different levels, collect rare trinkets for rewards, gain new abilities, fight bosses/enemies, and repeat over and over again. There’s a tired and true element to Flynn: Son of Crimson and, if you’re quick to get bored when playing 2D titles like it, this won’t change your mind at all.
It Still Scratches That Old-School Itch
Here at Honey's Anime, we've played hundreds of clone-like games and rarely do they ever impress us. Flynn: Son of Crimson isn't the next evolution of 2D platforming action, but that doesn't mean you're not going to enjoy the ride. Combat is reminiscent of the older gaming days but with that modern flair, which is a nice experience for those who don't want to boot up their dusty old consoles from yesteryear. When games like this come out, we welcome the opportunity to see how retro-like games have surpassed the older days of NES and come to the new generation of gamers.
Flynn: Son of Crimson isn't going to create a revolution with its old-school themes, but even still, it's one of the sharper retro-like titles we've played in some time. Combat is smooth, platforming is fluid, and visuals are impressive. Overall, the game yearns to be played by those who still live in the late '80s and early '90s. We can't recommend enough to try out Flynn: Son of Crimson as we know many of you fans of Shovel Knight and such will love this title!
Flynn: Son of Crimson is already out, and you can play it on PC and all modern consoles.