Grab Your Boomstick!
You are a witch. But instead of a wand producing magical spells like fire and ice, your magic is focused into using weaponry and producing magical reloading ammo. You’ll be playing through an open world with super cute graphics set to music that almost perfectly settles into the background and fuels the gun-play at all the right moments.
As the game begins, you are granted your first hand cannon and set loose in the coming of age training gauntlet that acts as a well placed in-game tutorial. This happens after a brief introduction to the games primary villain, and man shrouded in black, the “Man in Black”.
Upon passing the gauntlet trial, you are accepted as the newest member of “The Clip”, which is a witch’s guild designed to protect the village from outsiders beyond the magical protective barrier that separates them from the “goblins”. There is little time to celebrate because, spoiler alert, your first mission consists of taking the steps needed to find more information about your mysterious Man in Black.
It’s the Journey, not the Destination.
The story from here on out consists of a series of tracking down various items needed to progress to the next phase. Throughout your journey, you will meet a cast of interesting characters. There are friends, enemies, and a few in-between that will help guide you through the open world map and move the story along as you blast your way through countless enemies on your way to the next objective.
This isn’t a bad thing because, for one, the twin-stick shooting is incredibly fun and easily the best part of the game, and two, you’ll need to kill enemies to build your health back up and collect the gems needed to upgrade your increasingly awesome arsenal. It is also gleefully satisfying as the graphics are very cutesy and the over-the-top blood splatter creates a gleeful juxtaposition. There is a pinata mode in the options menu if gallons of blood splatter is not your thing, or if you just want a more lighthearted experience.
The items are easy enough to locate, being marked with a red X, but not always so easy to access once you get to where you are going. The open world maps are easy enough to navigate, but each of the items that you are looking for will be found at the end of an increasingly large and complex dungeon and confronting a boss. This is actually my one gripe with the game.
The bosses are generally not too difficult and fun to battle against, but the dungeon maps will leave you wandering aimlessly for far too long looking for what one small thing you may have passed over. This can happen several different times per dungeon. There are often multiple floors and locked doors to get around and find keys to. The fog of war system works to tell you what areas you still need to access, but there are no markers to point out items in a room that you would want to revisit, such as a locked door requiring a key, or an unsolved puzzle. This was multiplied by having the fog clear if you barely stepped into a room (by avoiding enemies to regroup or being pushed out) and left immediately, the map marked the room as explored. If you die in the battle or just go a different way, looking back at the map, that room looks explored and you’ll find yourself scouring the entire map over and over, often multiple times, for different keys, in a dungeon.
Overall, Trigger Witch is top of the line shooting fun that is very satisfying. Unfortunately the fun is marred by some dragging dungeon moments that kill the momentum. The enemies are cute and get more dangerous as you go. The story maintains a good balance of being fun yet brings up some good morality points without getting too heavy-handed about it. The dialogue is well written and there are some generally sweet moments as well. If any of this triggers your fancy, raise your boomstick and come get some!
Review code provided
Platform: Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo
Release Date: 29/07/2021
No. of Players: 1-2
Category: Adventure, Shooter, Action
Download link: US eShop / UK eShop