I must admit to never having heard of Clash prior to being given the chance to review it. But billed as a fast paced fantasy arena fighter, I was looking forward to seeing what it could offer.
Unfortunately, I’m more than a little disappointed.
Not so much with the game itself because what it does, it does well, but with the limited appeal that it brings.
FennecFox Entertainment have hit the market with their version of an arena fighter. Colourful, fast and completely non-offensive, Clash pits two, three or four players against each other in a fight to the death. With four unique characters each with their own personalaites, Clash starts off on the right footing. But from then on in, it’s all a bit sparse.
Whether you choose to fight as Kibo, the white lion king of the Savannah, Lazarus the furious hunter of the night, Ceto the wimpy protector of the deep or even Xian Yu the jolly Guardian of the Sun Valley, each and every one of the characters plays the same, with only a slightly unique taunt and visual look splitting them apart. The game modes spread themselves across Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, King of the Hill and Crystal Hunt, with the mechanics found in numerous games from the very basic right up to the most complex are being present in Clash…but there isn’t much else to get excited about.
As a solo experience, there is nothing in place and even when you get together with a few friends, the fun that you have will no doubt run out after an hour or so. Admittedly, it’s great fun to begin with, with quick concise controls allowing for tight energetic fights, but once you’ve checked out each of the modes once or twice, then you’re left with nothing more than hunting for achievements.
With four maps available – one for each game mode and no leaderboards or stat collecting facilities, the adrenaline rush you get whilst dashing, blocking and jumping your way to victory is short lived. There is only one form of attack, that of a bashing dash, and with only your magical shield capable of saving yourself, simplicity really is the name of the game.
One thing that does save Clash from being over after five minutes is the ability to amend numerous options. All of the jump heights, dash lengths, dash cooldowns and blocking times can be changed from the default to either huge or miniscule amounts. Additionally, playing around with the gravity and flipping the maps can have a massive effect on the gameplay and, to a certain extent, makes Clash feel like a bigger game than just the four maps initially seem. It would be nice to be able to amend these options without having to jump back to the main menu each time, but the amendments do at least make your time with Clash just that little more bearable.
With the host able to change winning margins as well, if you’ve got some friends round for a beer or two and have enough controllers to hand, then Clash could well be a decent way of spending an hour or so.
It would be lovely to see the multiplayer madness that four player Clash brings get taken over to the online scene, but for an Xbox One game from a small Danish indie studio, then maybe that’s asking a bit too much. Similarly, get a few more maps and game modes included and Clash could be nearing a partymakers dream.
For what it is, Clash is a decent little time waster and if you can persuade three mates to invest a couple of quid each into a purchase, is something worthy of a night’s entertainment; albeit one that you’ll probably tire of after a couple of hours…even after hunting down all the achievements.