Death Coming ($1.99) by Sixjoy is a dark and humorous puzzle game about death. If you enjoyed games like Party Hard Go, Slayaway Camp and Friday the 13th: Killer Puzzle, then you will love Death Coming, since it falls into the same kind of genre.
These days, most of my gaming time has been with Monster Hunter: World on my PS4. However, when I need a break, I've been looking for games on my iPhone to keep me busy. If you've been following me on AppAdvice, then you'll know that I'm a sucker for puzzle games of all kinds. In fact, it's hard to think about a puzzle game that I have yet to try out on the platform. And I like cheesy horror flicks, so games like Slayaway Camp were perfect. But that came out a while ago, and I need something new. So when the news of Death Coming hit my inbox, I was intrigued. The game came out on PC last year, but I had never heard of it until now. And I'm glad I found out about it, because it does not disappoint.
App Feels Like
App Feels Like
Visually, Death Coming features beautiful pixel art that reminds me of various Kairosoft games, as well as the opening sequence for the HBO show, Silicon Valley. Despite going with a pixelated aesthetic, Death Coming manages to pack in a ton of detail for the various environments and characters. It also utilizes a top-down isometric perspective, as you're essentially like a god...of death. This makes it easy to see everything in a single glance, and you can zoom in freely with multitouch gestures. The frame rate for the game is smooth and fluid, with no issues of lag or choppiness on my iPhone 8 Plus. The soundtrack is oddly upbeat and quirky considering the dark nature of the game, but that just makes it more humorous to me. Plus the sound effects are delightful.
You're just an average old guy living his life, until one day you die in a freak accident. Not knowing what happened, you don't realize you're dead until Death reveals himself to you. Death makes a promise that if you help him harvest enough souls, he'll revive you, leaving you no choice. You end up becoming an agent of Death: a Reaper.
Since Death Coming is essentially a puzzle game, you'll go through the story in a linear fashion with levels. To unlock the next area, you must have cleared the one before it. However, solving the puzzles themselves don't have to be in linear order — just trigger the death traps as you please and get your kills, with weather permitting of course. Your goal in each stage is to kill a minimum number of people (indicated at the top right corner), but you do so by making it all look like accidents. Eventually, the Angels show up and act like police — if they catch you in the act, then you're "arrested" and lose a heart. Once all three are gone, then it's game over, and you have to restart.
The controls in Death Coming on mobile are simple and intuitive. Because each stage can be pretty vast, you can freely pan the camera around with one finger. To zoom in or out, just do the pinching gesture. Your new Reaper powers grant you the "Reaper's Eye," which lets you notice death traps in the environment, such as water and electric poles, flower pots, billboards, dangerous boxes piled high on shelves, and more. If you notice something that could be triggered, just tap on it. It'll be red if it's a death trap, while also highlighting areas that it will affect in red. Tap it again to trigger it, and hope that you catch some some unsuspecting victims.
Again, watch out for the Angels, as they'll arrest you if your Reaper Eye highlights a potential trigger and gets caught in their scanning range. Death Coming also features areas with more elaborate death traps, where you have to get rid of security patrols before it can be used.
The levels become more complex as you go, requiring more brainpower and multiple attempts. Observing the behavioral patterns and idiosyncracies of the NPCs is important, as it helps you figure out the right moment to trigger a death trap, which is key to killing efficiently. When you meet the bare minimum of required kills to clear a stage, you can stop and move forward. But another option is to stay and strive for gold, because why not master a stage?
Another fun thing about Death Coming is the fact that there are unique stories for each stage. For example, the second area on the map features the "Glorious Leader" who resembles Kim Jong Un in a satirical fashion, and you're in a factory that's working on restoring power to a nuclear missile. There's spies trying to sabotage the Glorious Leader, but Death doesn't take sides — just get him those souls.
Play as death, and manipulate the surroundings to bring judgement time to others.
Death Coming is definitely a unique puzzle game that stands out from the rest. It's packed with gorgeous and detailed pixel art with an eccentric soundtrack to boot. The controls are simple to pick up and intuitive for touch screen devices, so it works out well. The stages are pretty elaborate, full of surprises, and it can be fairly challenging to beat, so prepare yourself for multiple attempts and high replay value. The dark humor is more silly than anything, so it's perfect for anyone who enjoys some satire.
While Death Coming is great, the levels can take up quite a bit of time, and that's the only drawback to the game. I don't think it's something that you can just pick up and play when you have a few moments. Death Coming is best suited for those longer gaming sessions, due to the amount of observing, planning, and execution involved in clearing stages.
As someone who loves a bit of dark humor and puzzles, Death Coming is just perfect and right up my alley. The graphics are visually impressive with the modernized pixel art, and the sound design is fun to listen to. It's also worth taking the time to read Death's quips to your character, because who knew Death could have a sense of humor anyway? The puzzles themselves are challenging, and the Final Destination style accidents are downright entertaining.
Death Coming is available on the App Store as a universal download for your iPhone and iPad for just $1.99. There are no in-app purchases.