Review by Jack Bankhead
Game provided by publisher
Zombies have always been a popular topic in popular culture. What is it about zombies that people love? Either way, some neat movies, comics, books, and games have been made on the subject. Garage attempts to find its place in zombie culture, but ultimately fails to make a splash in the genre. Despite that, Garage is still a solid game that may be for you if you love a challenge and zombies.
The game is a top-down twinstick shooter. A challenging one at that, too. You walk around the levels, fighting zombies and other mutated monsters. You can kick stuff, punch stuff, hack stuff with a hatchet, and shoot stuff. Controls are nice, they feel right and they serve their purpose. Nothing particularly satisfying. In the levels, there are zombies, rats, and other horrible monstrosities to kill. Rats are especially hard, sometimes more than the zombies themselves.
Level designs work, but to me, nothing special. There’s inspiration from Hotline Miami but it doesn’t expand upon it. Many of the objects react to your kicking and/or punching, as you can punch a chair down, but then you can only kick it. There’s a cool sense of detail here the devs put in, and I’m impressed by it. While the levels get better and crazier as you go on, it still isn’t amazing. Something is missing that spark.
The graphics are another mediocre part of Garage in my opinion. I like the VHS aesthetic, but overall, I’m not impressed with the pixelated graphics. The graphics don’t do anything new, while nice and flashy, didn’t leave any sort of impact. I never stopped to appreciate the graphics during my gameplay.
The gameplay is quite challenging. It was at a level I did not enjoy, as challenging games are definitely not my forte. If you are expecting a moderately challenging game, this is not it. It’s challenging. While tons of health objects show up, I died way more than I would have liked. However, it felt like it was because of the controls and other problems rather than my skill. It could just be me, but the challenge felt cheap.
Garage is also a horror game! It’s decent, the scares are actually naturally scary, and made me jump more than once. This is probably one of the better parts of Garage, as the designs of monsters are actually scary. If only I liked the graphics more, the monsters probably would be horrifying.
Weapon play is another lacking feature in my opinion. While the way each weapon works affects the zombie differently, whether it be an axe or pistol, the kills are satisfying and different. Guns have limited ammo, which requires you to think and conserve the ammo under pressure. While there is some positive in the weapon system, it felt a little clunky to me.
Garage is a game that looks cool, but ultimately fails to find its own place. Drawing a lot from Hotline Miami and popular culture, Garage isn’t anything special. It’s a solid game in its own right, but personally, with its clunkiness, okay graphics, and unoriginal design I didn’t enjoy Garage.
Reviewed on the Nintendo Switch, provided by tinyBuild