released on Dec 15, 2022

Can you feel them? The colors burning beneath your skin?

Splatter is a first-person fever dream where you blast constantly-adapting enemies into neon sprays of pulp and slime. This world is one built for violence. It is a digital mindscape, surreal and yet strangely familiar, constructed by four anonymous administrators. To survive within it, you must overcome each challenge and outsmart hordes of creatures that learn as you defeat them. Blast enemies with your finger guns, chug cans of energy drinks, and maintain your brain chemistry in order to win.

Your victories, however, may come at a terrible price. Can you uncover the motives of your captors before it is too late? Can you survive? Can you remain sane? Can you remain yourself?

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If the last half-decade has demonstrated anything, it is that the terminally online rhetoric of post-ironic who-gives-a-shit is metastasising. Vine was a benign growth, TikTok a malignant tumour. The netizen-hive-mind-collective that 'solved' the Boston Bombing is directly responsible for the fashwave that is/has/does/will erode democracy. Your grandpa has FOMO and bought $GME to 💎🙌 to the moon and we're all gonna make it, gm, gn, and you're buying into my shitcoin so I can rugpull you because Blizzard nerfed Siphon Life during Obamna's first term. Video games and anime used to be so much better before this forced diversity bullshit ᴡʜᴀᴛ ᴛʜᴇ ꜰᴜᴄᴋ ᴀʀᴇ yᴏᴜ ꜱᴀyɪɴɢ ᴅᴏ yᴏᴜ ʜᴇᴀʀ ᴛʜᴇ ꜱʜɪᴛ ᴅʀɪʙʙʟɪɴɢ ᴏᴜᴛ ᴏꜰ yᴏᴜʀ ᴍᴏᴜᴛʜ yᴏᴜ ᴄʀᴇᴛɪɴ took away the possibility of me getting a tradwife with Abigail Shapiro's body and Marin Kitagawa's face while I [REDACTED] to Angela White after a month of semen retention and get those GAIN$$$$ because there's always a bigger fool and it sure as fuck isn't me and you just don't get this new meme and I'm being gangstalked and I haven't [As the owner of a LandNFT, you own your individual Metalverse patch and secure a permanently assigned place on the Met---
The Milennials are the new Boomers [GEN-X ERASURE] and even the Zoomers are coming of age and they've been inundated with information and bullshit bullshit bullshit so they're casting a mirror back at this fucked up world we've made for them in their own art but some people are trying to be cute and coy with it and you get a YIIK or a Neon White but at least one of those was a good game even if it was still corpo-white-washed faux-sthetics. And your cute and coy attempts and being quirky fail to represent how angry you should be that you were born into this mess of a world because don't you know anger results in nothing? Why yes my favourite podcasts are My Brother, My Brother & Me, and The Adventure Zone, I love to choke down the fetid slurry that is the McElroys' toxic positivity of no bummers and horses and you're being force fed advertisements for fast food and you can't even open your eyes to realise it.
So when a game has the moxie to be viscerally angry, I have to take notice because that feels so genuine in the hyperrealistic world we inhabit. And Splatter is mad that the Internet has made us manipulative, lonely, nostalgic, deluded, greedy, and ultimately willing to harm others (or ourselves) for some gain, be it financial or spiritual or egotistical or chemical. This works where other games borne of the online mindset falter because this runs deep. Rat King Collective didn't disconnect to craft up some malformed half-simulacra that is outdated before it comes out. They never stopped being online, they didn't go for the here and now, they struck at the core of fourteen-year-old-me's identity. This isn't the cream of the crap, this is the dregs of a multitude of online cultures that you, yes, had to be there for. Or maybe you didn't. Does it matter? This goes deep enough that a missed referential quip refuses a reading of "oh this is one of those internet things I don't get," it simply recedes into the background, a cacophony of noise.
It isn't as if the gameplay is some marvel though. It's a spongy xoomer-shooter affair with hand guns and a Dark Souls Borne Ring dodge and commitment to the bit. A leaping enemy is gonna leap! Your dodge isn't going to give you i-frames but it'll get you out of the way and into a new harm's way. I'm not here for the gameplay anyways, it's a means to an end.
This is the video game equivalent of B.R. Yeager's Amygdalatropolis and I ravenously ate it up. Get mad. Wreck shit. Tear it all down. WORLD IS A FUCK

A little rough around the edges, but I appreciate it for what it is: A fun and experimental game with a fantastic aesthetic. Could benefit from a balance patch or two.

No doubt about it, Splatter is worth a play. Original and fresh, it's a wild ride with engaging combat throughout. Especially as a debut game from a team of seven, this slime-soaked shooter impresses. Xenial it's not, despite its collage of familiar sights and sounds from internet culture. It blasts players with pulse-pounding music and psychedelic visuals until they've had their fill. The only way out is through.

Splatter's a surprisingly tricky arena horde shooter with lots of strange and intriguing visual distortion effects that blur the line between "stylish" and "fugly" in a way that, surprisingly, really works. Splatter has a style - that much is for sure, but it's hard to put into words, and I don't think it can be described as "pretty"- nor is that what it's aiming for.
If you were assessing the game unfavorably, you could say that "Oh, it's just another game with a glitch aesthetic"- but I feel like the cause and effect are different here. Splatter looks like that because it very distinctly focuses in on broken, or scammy technological detritus in its thematics, rather than only the "made-ness" (and unravelling) of the game itself. I called it "viruscore" to a friend once, and that seems to fit the bill.
It's also fairly challenging. Simple to pick up, hard to get good at. It's made me sweat a good bit!
And the story is...
...the story is...
the story... is...
-I think I'll let you see this one for yourself. This review's spoiler-free! Congratulations. If I had to circumscribe my thoughts on it though, I'll do so by saying that one of the main devs of this thing and I had a very interesting conversation about modernist literature in their Discord! That's all.