“Fight to survive as long as you can.”
The final sentence offered to you on the Steam page for Devil Daggers. Fight to survive, little more is known than that simple imperative.
Upon opening Devil Daggers for the very first time, a feeling of confusion sets in, the lack of dialogue or text information is peculiar to the untrained eye. All that is visible is a pixelated hand and in the distance, a gleaming spinning dagger.
The only way to start the game is to advance upon that dagger. If you took the time to look at the Steam screenshots, you have a fair idea as to the horrors which are about to come. If not, then buckle up and grab hold of your mouse for dear life! Because the next few minutes will be brutal.
Once you collect the dagger, you will be transported to a very dark room, the floor appears to be made of stone… Oh God! What is that! Some foul creature has erupted in the far distance, spewing forth a number of horrific spheres, what are you to do? Normally in arena shooters, you are provided with some sort of weapon, be it a melee weapon, or a firearm. But in this all you have is a hand, click the left mouse button and you will find that you have the ability to shoot lasers from your fingertips…
But by this point, you are probably dead, the leaderboard flashes solemnly as your name appears so far down on the list that you are surrounded by usernames compiled only of letters and symbols.
Maybe another go might result in something better, you foolishly think to yourself. But this mindset will result in a vicious cycle:
2. Collect the laser dagger of death
3. Defeat maybe two or three of the large creatures
5. Believe that you can do better the next round
5. Refer to the first number.
It is this style of repetitive, monotonous drivel that makes ‘games’ such as Cookie Clicker and 2048 so damn addicting, Devil Daggers is a game you can start playing at eight o’clock in the evening, and finish at approximately seven-thirty the next evening.
Personally I enjoy this type of video game, of course it can, and eventually will become horribly dull, as will any video game you spend many hours on. But Devil Daggers is fantastic in it’s own peculiar way. Be it the lack of non-diegetic sound, or the sinister undertones of why you are in this arena, fighting unlimited hoards of beasts and irritating skull spheres. If you enjoy doing things for absolutely no reason, straining to be the best! And have it amount to nothing but digital numbers on a leaderboard, or if you are like me, and enjoy something to occupy your hands whilst you listen to a podcast. (Preferably the podcast on this very website) I would recommend Devil Daggers.