Steam is having yet another sale, and Ronin was down to 7 euros, which hubby said was okay for our budget. Ronin has been on my wishlist for a while based on game play trailers, but having completed it with the “happy ending” in a little under fifteen hours, I have to say, I really, really hate this game. I ought to be used to half baked indie games with shit controls, buggy interfaces, and bad level design, but seeing a combination of all of them plus gleeful trolling by the maker knowing nothing in their game works consistently? Oh, that’s enough to raise a super seiyan level hate boner.
You might think I’m exaggerating, but in the “hints” is the comment that the jump arc lies. The arc is a fundamental part of the interface, because when you go into combat the controls go turn-based and you CANNOT move any other way than using the jump with the right stick. Now I want to be fair and say that this control scheme has potential. The problem is that where the end of the arc indicates your landing point is not accurate for 80% of your jumps. Why should it matter? Because it’s the difference between landing on a ledge and landing on a laser or a land mine.
Worse still, the arcing path you think you’ll take is also often inaccurate, which will send your eponymous ronin (who I will name…Ronin) leaping directly into gunfire. Between turns, the enemy line of fire is represented by red lines, so optimally you want to ease your jump arc under those lines. But quite often what seems like the right height will end up a lie, and Ronin takes a face and chest full of bullets. As you die with one shot, this is…aggravating, to say the least. It’s even more annoying because the game isn’t long, nor is it particularly difficult. Had the arc line and landing points been more accurate, I probably could have finished in around 4 to 5 hours, tops. As it is, I didn’t win because I got better at the game. I won through sheer willpower and blind fucking luck. Continue reading