2D platformers comprise some of the most renowned old-school experiences in gaming. However, there are tons of them so does Caveman Warriors have what it takes to stand out in such a crowded genre?
When you start playing Caveman Warriors, you'll be initially impressed by its tough challenge and lengthy stages. The first stage alone is full of tricky platforming, fierce enemies, and puzzle-like situations that'll make you want to throw your controller. You play by running and jumping around as your caveman or cavewoman of choice while unleashing a variety of attacks. A couple of these attacks use up automatically replenishing stamina and can be utilized to solve puzzles in order to progress. For example, one character can throw a spear to use as a platform while another can charge through certain rocks. Thankfully, you can change characters on the fly by the tap of a button so you can always work out how to advance. Overall, Caveman Warriors certainly presents an easy to understand yet challenging 2D action dynamic but does it all add up to an enjoyable adventure?
Caveman Warriors doesn't look like much of a game with goofy characters and enemies and mostly generic environments. You'll find yourself working through caves, volcanoes, and even a UFO but nothing really comes across as memorable. Similarly, the music primarily consists of forgettable tunes that can be rather annoying in certain stages. Listening to a grating guitar on a continuous loop will eventually drive anyone insane. Good thing the music remains quietly in the background. On the plus side, the sound effects are great complete with character-specific grunts and satisfying hacking and slashing while you take out enemy creatures.
The biggest issue that plagues Caveman Warriors is its clunky gameplay. For starters, there are 2 jump buttons that let you jump to varying heights. Why they implemented this as opposed to a double-jump is completely beyond me. Next, many abilities require a brief charging period so you have to time things accordingly. For example, if you want to throw a spear then you have to tap the button upon ascending a jump in order to chuck it at the right height. The platforming itself can be a nightmare as you'll regularly fall to your demise either because you weren't 100% precise or an enemy projectile pushed you back. It's unforgiving stuff.
One thing that Caveman Warriors handles very well is its multiplayer component. You can play cooperatively with up to four simultaneous players and doing so makes the clunky gameplay actually quite charming and enjoyable. It's still frustrating as heck but with chums by your side, it alleviates a lot of the tedium of having to retry sections again and again.
Finally, Caveman Warriors' campaign is fairly short with only 8 stages. After completing them, you can try to collect all the batteries, unlock extra variations of the stages, and play all of the stages again in arcade mode. However, you'll have to be a hardcore perfectionist to want to do all of that as the replay value surely isn't inherently incentivizing.
Caveman Warriors looks like a standard Flash game and plays like a subpar SNES game. That being said, there's a certain charm to the clunky and frustrating 2D action that makes playing with friends somewhat enjoyable.
- + Easy to learn yet challenging gameplay
- + Well-done sound effects
- + Playing with friends is pretty fun
- - Clunky controls cause much frustration
- - Unappealing visuals and annoying music
- - Only consists of 8 stages with little replay value unless you're a perfectionist