Slayaway Camp [Review]

Release  Date: Oct 25, 2016

Price: $8.99 on Steam

Slayaway Camp is a game about two things: sliding and gore. It provides a solid and well-balanced gameplay experience, but SC does have a couple annoying things that make it tedious. I also had my fill of this type of puzzle experience after several hours. Other players that stick with the game will find a good number of maps and victims to clear.

SC oozes b-movie horror vibes all over the place. It’s funny if you understand the references and tropes that the game parodies. Did I mention the blood? There’s plenty of bones and blood with all the victim slaying that one does. There are also different kinds of executions available to purchase to keep things fresh on the slaying front. You can play as different killers depending on the movie (set of levels tied by a theme) selected or any that you unlocked. Revisiting the movies to play the deleted scenes levels is recommended since more jokes are found there.

The blocky aesthetic works pretty well overall except for the close-ups when a cutscene execution is triggered. That’s when the game is at its worst graphically. The models don’t look very good at that distance, but the unique executions are fun to look at for the first few times. They do wear out their welcome after a while, but thankfully, you can skip them with the press of a button. The slow-motion executions that can trigger are a good time that result in an explosion of bits and pieces.

The gameplay is the strongest part of the whole sliding experience, partially due to the developer deftly handling the pacing of new obstacles and mechanics. The game starts off simple with your character sliding across the tiles without much to stop you. Over time, you’ll encounter pits, water, cats, mines, police officers, S.W.A.T., and more. They all contribute to a fun and challenging experience. I thought the idea with light switches was really neat because of how it changed victim/police behavior. When it comes to the tools available for figuring out the moves to make, you can easily restart the map, rewind, or fast forward your moves.

There’s also a system in place for buying hints and solutions. You can also skip levels instead if you don’t have the money (there’s an uninteresting mode you can play for gold which is comprised of quick time executions). I definitely bought a few solutions after coming to a complete standstill mentally.

So, if you like the GO series or sliding puzzles in general (not the tile ones), Slayaway Camp should provide slides for days. You’ll enjoy it much more if you’re familiar with the references, but the solid gameplay, over-the-top kills, and silliness in general put this game somewhere in between above average and good.