Decksplash Alpha Impressions

decksplash

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to be one of the chosen playtesters for Bossa Studios newest game, Decksplash. The idea of a skateboarding take on Splatoon got me incredibly intrigued, though after testing the game, I can’t really tell say it’s an enjoyable experience at the moment.

I’ll start with the good, the game has an incredible amount of charm. The stylistic choices made for the graphics as well as the skateboard designs are definitely my favorite things about the game. I absolutely love the cartoony design to it overall, and it certainly adds a lot of personality in a game that currently doesn’t have much of it.

I think that’s the biggest issue, actually. Other than personality, the game has nothing to keep you playing. The idea behind it sounds incredible on paper, but what I played seemed more like a boring ripoff of Splatoon that doesn’t really know what it wants to do with itself right now. I could only play a few matches, alone or with friends, before I gave up on the alpha ever being fun. There’s simply not enough substance.

The gameplay is essentially Splatoon’s main multiplayer mode, and it even keeps the same name: Turf War. You ride around landing tricks to create a splash of paint on the ground. The bigger the trick is that you pull off, the more points you get, and the more area on the ground that you cover. The team that covers the most area with their color of paint wins the match, but it also very important to charging your “shockwave” attack, as you can only charge it by riding through paint of your team’s color. Using this shockwave attack in battle allows you to deny any points that your opponent may have been building up in a string of tricks, and its a very useful tool.

That sounds like a lot of fun, right? The issue is, it’s actually pretty boring. Since you’re not really on a battleground like you are in Splatoon, matches end up being incredibly tame, especially since the shockwave is so hard to land effectively that it ends up being a waste of time trying to use. You’re just landing tricks to lay down paint, and not much else. It gets old incredibly fast, and I found that even my friends didn’t really want to play much of it anymore.

I feel like Decksplash has a lot of potentially to be a pretty interesting and unique take on the Splatoon formula, but right now it’s nowhere near where it needs to be. I truly hope Bossa Studios figures out the direction they want this game to go, because right now it feels like a mess.

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