Released (on Steam): 13 Aug, 2020
Genres: Adventure, Casual, Indie, Strategy
Developer: AlpaSun Games
Publisher: AlpaSun Games
Steam Price: £3.99
Completion: Played many games! Beat level 20+ with each character and level 15+ on classic.
Playtime at Review: 7.2 hours
Achievements at Review: 28/29 (97%)
My rating: 7.4/10
Four classic RPG characters to choose from with varying starting HP (kind of like initial difficulty settings).
Classic turn-based RPG combat when playing with characters.
Classic mode for those wanting more of a challenge and original Minesweeper experience.
Character stats could be more varied, particularly initial weapon damage.
Battle Sweeper is an interesting take on the classic Minesweeper. As it says on the Steam page, Battle Sweeper is “more than just Minesweeper with a new skin”. The big difference here is that instead of mines, you have monsters, and instead of it being game over once you hit a mine, you get to fight the monsters in classic turn-based RPG style.
There are a choice of four typical RPG characters to play as. There’s a knight, rogue, lizard, and a wizard. Each have their own weapon and starting stats (HP) to reflect the character. I think of these as initial difficulty settings. As anybody who’s played RPGs may expect, the knight starts with the highest HP which would be the easiest difficulty setting, making it the perfect choice for those wanting to ease their way into the game. Currently each begin with a weapon attack range of 0-6. Personally, I think it would be even more interesting and challenging if the character’s weapons had differing initial damage too, so the knight with the broadsword would have a broader initial weapon attack range than that of the rogue with their knife.
The main gameplay is as you would initially expect from a Minesweeper game. You’re clicking on tiles to reveal other tiles, and based on the numbers displayed on the tiles, you have to figure out where the monsters are. You can then mark where you suspect each monster is with so that you don’t mistakenly click and get into a battle. If you click to reveal a monster, you enter into a turn based battle to the death! There’s several different monster designs with varying health and attack ranges, and the classic RNG of the attacks play a major part in each battle. Win the battle and you can keep going. Lose against a monster and you’ll have to start again from level 1. Luckily the next game should be a little easier as you’ll retain any HP and attack bonuses gained throughout each playthrough. Alternatively, you can reset the character to play with its original HP and attack.
After successfully completing each level you will receive a bonus before starting the next level. This could be an extra potion, attack boost, or an increase to your max HP, all of which will be of great use as you progress, especially if you’re click happy like me or simply find a monster on that unfortunate first reveal! There’s also an extra monster added as you reach each new level, making for quite a challenge the further you progress.
Of course, for those who want to experience something more in line with the original Minesweeper, there’s a classic mode. No characters, weapons or stats, and instead of entering a battle upon finding a monster, you will simply lose the game and have to start again from scratch.
As somebody who grew up playing Minesweeper and other simple games like it, I found Battle Sweeper to be a pleasant reminder. I agree with the dev, it’s certainly not just a reskin of Minesweeper and I really enjoyed the twist with the classic turn-based battles. I think a little extra could be done to make the characters a more unique and the difference in difficulty more significant, but it’s a great game as it stands either way!
Posted on 07-10-2020