For fans of roguelite hack-and-slash games, Tunche is a fun and vibrant game to add to your rotation. With five characters to choose from, it gives a little bit of variety in play style whenever you start to feel like switching it up. The story is intriguing and draws you in, making you need to know more, and the talking llama adds just the right amount of humor to balance it all out.
Release Date: 11/2/21
Suggested Audience Age: 7+
Number of Players: up to 4 players
Time to Play: 7.5 hours
Availability: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Recommended for fans of: roguelites and hack and slash
Geek to Geek Media was provided with a review copy of this title
What's The Story
There is trouble afoot deep in the Amazon Rainforest. What used to be a peaceful land has been overcome by some foul magic. Creatures who were once gentle and calm are now aggressive monsters who are out to kill all who enter their territory. But what happened? Does Tunche, the mighty spirit of the forest, have anything to do with this? If so, was he acting alone- or did he have help?
Now there is a party of five talented children ready to save the Amazon, each with their own backstory and unique reasons to power their motivations. You can choose to play one of these characters and even have up to 3 of your friends hop in to control some of the others to make a full party. There is Rumi, the sorceress. Pancho, the musician. Qaru, the bird boy. Nayra, the warrior (my favorite). Or Hat Kid who is a guest character from the game A Hat In Time.
Oh, and there is a talking llama NPC who brings a mixed bag of humor and frustration to the game.
What the Gameplay Feels Like
Typical for games in the roguelike style, Tunche has a lot of running through the same beginning levels over and over. However, it is very well balanced. Generally, I get tired of roguelikes because I feel like I'm just spinning my wheels and nothing is improving, however with Tunche I really feel as though I'm making progress with each run.
During your run, you are collecting various currencies to be able to spend in camp once you have died and been teleported there again. Using these currencies, you can purchase upgrades to your attacks, how much health you get, special abilities, and more. Eventually, you also free some weary travelers who you can pay to help you on future runs by finding things to improve your health, mana, strength, and so on. With all the upgrades you can get, what could be tedious is instead fairly validating as you can see your progress being made with every attempt at fighting your way through the Amazon.
What I liked
First, can I just point out this artistry? Tunche is hand-drawn with beautiful, vibrant graphics. The characters are all dynamic and fun, and it feels like a very high-quality game overall (which it is).
I really enjoyed my time with Tunche. Whether I wanted to try to play through a run during a break from work, or sit down and do several attempts in the evenings, it never got boring. There is a lot of variety in the different characters. Although to be honest, I played a lot of Nayra since she was my favorite. The levels are randomly switched up so each time you aren't sure what you're going to get. Yet you still have a little bit of choice in deciding which rewards you want to shoot for.
What I didn't like
There were a few bugs I found in the game. Most frustrating was the game crashing several times when I got to the second boss. However, in recent plays, I noticed that the bug seems to have been fixed. So, I expect the developers are working hard on getting all the bugs ironed out.