Review Sword Of Xolan
A truly inspiring action platformer
Author: Brandon Girod
Date: 08 Apr 2017, tested on HTC One M8
Great 8-bit graphics, responsive controls, lovely gameplay
Level design is simple
You’ve been transported to a world full of pixelated monsters, treasure, and 8-bit justice. In Sword of Xolan for Android, you play as Xolan, who is a dude here to serve up a nice can of butt whoopin. Throughout the game’s 30 hand-crafted levels, you’ll fight through a huge number of various enemies, bosses, and become stronger along the way.
When I first set my eye’s upon Xolan’s beautifully pixelated profile, I was in love. The artwork was phenomenal and the game’s animations are truly inspiring. A lot of people use retro graphics as a shortcut because the general theme takes less effort to design, and you don’t need as many art assets. This game does it right, though.
Gameplay is also really fluid. You have two directional buttons, a jump, melee, and fireball button. Everything is incredibly responsive, which is good because most mobile action platformers fall short on this end. Jumps are never difficult, especially since you have a double jump, but the jumping physics shine even in sticky situations.
My only gripe is that a lot of the environments do tend to look very similar to each other, and you collect coins to buy cards that make Xolan stronger, but I think some aesthetic upgrades would be nice too. Gameplay does get a little repetitive because the game never puts any of its mechanics to the test in new ways. Instead, the gameplay experience remains pretty static throughout. It’s good, but it’s one of those games where you’re pretty much done when you’re done. You’ll never really feel inspired to pick it back up again.
Sword of Xolan was a really pleasant surprise, though. I thought the artwork looked good when I first downloaded the game, but it’s always nice to have my suspicions confirmed.