If you’re looking for another beat ‘em style game that is pretty fun to play, Final Exam is that game. Final Exam is your standard and typical sidescrolling beat ‘em up that does very little to innovate the genre. Despite that, there is a lot of fun to be had with the title when it’s downfalls don’t show.
Final Exam stars four incredibly stereotypical characters (nerd, jock, cheerleader, bad boy) as they are heading to a alumni party. Since the story does little to convince players that four outlandishly different social groups are handing out together, it makes sense that the rest of the tale is barebones as well. That’s completely fine with a title like this, where gameplay is clearly put into heavy focus. As they travel to the party, things hit the fan when slimy monsters stop the characters in their trail.
Players are then challenged to complete numerous tasks as they fight off hordes upon hordes of these monsters. Combat is a load of fun, especially when unlocking numerous abilities in a character building tree, almost similar in appearance to that seen in Dead Island although a lot less fleshed out. Players can also unlock numerous weapons across the numerous levels, hidden well in crates and underneath certain areas. These help add to fresh ways to pummel through the massive amount of enemies that may attack. Between shotguns and crowbars, flipping in an artistic style as the cheerleader is but one fun and humorous way to take down these enemies.
However, the game takes numerous halts along the way as well. In an attempt to freshen the experience some more, Final Exam tasks players with tedious tasks that range from delivering degenerate kids to a school bus to delivering crates of Nitro to open up areas. These tasks can become repetitive, boring and drags down the experience tenfold. These moments can sometimes require a lot of annoying backtracking, which can also grow tiresome.
Despite those moments, the wide variety of enemies offer new strategies in the expansive combat.What is already fun becomes even more so when adding these numerous enemies. Another factor that influences the amount of entertainment that can be had with this title is the inclusion of cooperate multiplayer. Playing with others undoubtedly brings the experience up to its highest point. Not only do those tedious moments become less frustrating, but the hidden competitive element in scoring higher than your partner makes the game that much more enjoyable. The game supports both local and online multiplayer, both fully functioning and enjoyable.
The game’s whacky aesthetics suit the tone of the game, and it looks great. Character designs fit the stereotype they are representing, and the enemy types are unique and interesting looking. Environments also look pretty, but some aspects are recycled and it does show. The game’s soundtrack, while it can be drowned out at times, also serves its purpose in hyping up those all out intense moments of the game.
Final Exam is a fun game that could be much more than a good time. Instead, however, things are played safe by failing to change up the formula that makes up your atypical beat ‘em up. While the combat is relatively fun, the breaks in between hectic battles drag down the experience. Clocking in at about four to five hours, Final Exam can be fun in bursts, but don’t expect to be intensely gripping onto the controller for hours on end.
- Combat is intense and fun
- Upgrades and skill tree system
- Game looks and sounds great
- Co-op/competitive is great
- Breaks in the drag the game down
- Too much backtracking