DEADBOLT (PC) (2016)

Overview: A 2D stealth-action platformer. Throw knives and fire guns as you make your way through each level fighting crime against the undead (e.g., zombies and vampires). Use vents to sneak up on enemies, shoot out lights and hide in the darkness, and use furniture for cover against incoming fire. How you choose to tackle a level (stealth, head-on, or something in between) is up to you!

I stopped playing after the first level, because the controls I had available (keyboard and touchpad) were difficult to use and thus limited my gameplay experience. With that being said, the game seemed fun.

When used correctly, the sledgehammer is a powerful weapon.

For a more casual experience (e.g. the player is not trying to handicap him/herself), then a mouse is a must-have device for this game, or at least a touchpad with physical left and right buttons. However, I can't imagine a touchpad ever being better than a mouse when it comes to input devices.

Setup: Keyboard and Touchpad (for reticule) without physical mouse buttons.

Offline Game Time: 12 minutes (session game time)

[20181228 Edit]

Today I loaded this game up and I had realized that I tried it once before. Even though I knew playing with a mouse helps, I tried to play the game anyways.

I give massive credit to a game that's so fun to play, that I put the effort into playing it despite only being able to play it with a touchpad (which sucks ass).

Setup: Keyboard and Touchpad.

Gameplay Log:
Completed the second level.

Gonna take out a Zombie with a knife.

Offline Game Time: Approximately 19 minutes (session game time, including time figuring out how to take a screenshot*)

*[20181228: Not sure how I did it on 20180614, but today I read that F5 works for in-game screenshots]

[20181228 Edit]

Today I played DEADBOLT with a proper setup and it was a great experience! Although the game was more enjoyable, I had difficulty wrapping my head around the story.

Setup: Keyboard and Mouse

Gameplay Log:
Finished the first nine levels.
Apparently a "knife headshot" doesn't count as a headshot.
The kill Puff without a Tommy Gun means, finish the level without using the Tommy Gun.
35% Complete

Steam Game Time: 2.8 hours (total Steam game time)

You get your mission from a talking fireplace. It's weird, yet not.

20181229 Part 1:
Today I decided to play more, because clearing all the Zombie Kingz missions felt insufficient. After playing for 2.1 hours, I had completed 49% and I was prepared to stop playing. However, I was compelled to play more. I booted the game back up and kept playing until I completed the 1000 Year Royals missions (65%). The extra 16% took 3 hours of game time! The second-to-last mission was particularly hard, especially because I thought I was simply executing my strategy wrong.

Gameplay Log:
Bought the Scythe after completing "Lux in Tenebris." However I didn't use it in the subsequent level because at the time it was easier to use the Headhunter (to break the phylactery).
Lol. Today I organically learned how to kill an enemy with a toilet. (If the enemy is sitting on the toilet and you exit the toilet, it'll kill the enemy.)
In the second to last 1000 Year Royals mission, this was roughly the final solution: 0) Equip Scythe and Nothing. 1) Knock on the door. 2) Left, Swipe, Left, Swipe, Burn. 3) Run through door, grab Tommy Gun, enter vent (the enemies are aggro'd, including the ones on the second floor). 4) Use the vent to the left. Burn the ash, kill the enemy. It's better to kill him so he doesn't walk upstairs. Ignore the sledgehamer. 5) Use the toilet vent to go to the second floor (it'll kill the vampire). Open the door. Kill the enemy (three swipes of the Scythe). 6) Walk to the room with the hanging female vampire. She'll drop, kill her with the Scythe. Pick up the gun and shoot out the lights and the phylacteries. 7) Three enemies will come in from the right. I haven't quite perfected the order which they come. But more or less, I'm able to fire my bullets, pick up my Scythe, and finish them off. 8) I believe I had enough time to go back and pick up the weapon dropped at #5. Also pick up a shotgun. 9) Go to the rooftop and take out the two skeletons and burn the last ash. Take out some lights. 10) Can take out some enemies that come rushing in, but mainly make an escape through the left. 11) On my way out, there's a vampire facing left. I ignore him and walk to my car. (In a previous run, I aggro'd him and died!)

Even vampires like to party. (Dancing vampires will not aggro on sight.)

Steam Game Time: 8.4 hours (total Steam game time) / 5.1 hours (session game time)

20181229 Part 2:
Technically, I played a little bit more. However, I spent most of the time just dicking around. In fact, I didn't play any new missions.

Gameplay Log:
I've yet to play the first mission in the third segment.
I looked up what other people think are good primary/secondary weapons (Steam thread). The most popular combo choice is the Scythe/Mousegun. The most popular primary is Scythe, followed by Death + Taxes. I purchase the Mousegun and Death + Taxes, leaving me with 55 souls.

Steam Game Time: 9.4 hours (total Steam game time) / 1.0 hours (session game time)

+ Fun gameplay; enjoyable gameplay mechanics
+ Great atmosphere and artwork
+ Levels can be completed in a variety of ways
+ Great soundtrack

~ Requires a mouse to fully enjoy (as opposed to a touchpad); other equivalent devices with more control than a touchpad may be viable (e.g., Steam Controller, drawing tablets)

On the docks, swinging my favorite weapon, the Scythe.

Minor Con:
- Not enough visibility with the rating system (at the end of the level the game rates the player out of five stars); see also death count*
- Related to the previous bullet, the score screen shows the death count, which would be relevant if progress was cumulative, but it's not (the level resets when the player dies).*
- Lacks interesting stealth kills

*A Steam thread says the ranking depends on speed (time of successful run) and accuracy. Doesn't matter how many times you die.

Thus far, I've completed two-thirds of the game. For the most part, DEADBOLT is fun to play. However, part of me wishes the story was more enticing (maybe it's a slow build-up) and there was more incentive to do well on the levels. The game rewards 50 souls (in-game monetary system) for doing so, but they could have split that up into three parts, increased the souls rewarded, and increased the costs of the weapons (and scale the power of expensive weapons). Speaking of doing well, I mentioned above that it's unclear what constitutes doing well (5 stars). This also makes the game difficult to enjoy.

On Steam, the description for the game says it "is an extremely challenging stealth-action hybrid." However, my own impression is that the ramp of difficulty (roughly measured by the amount of time required to successfully complete a level) is unbalanced: staying easy for a long duration and then suddenly ramping up in difficulty. I would have liked if the game had become difficult at a smoother rate.

In the end, I enjoyed the game's stealth mechanics and would highly recommend the game to players who enjoy stealth platformers (e.g., Mark of the Ninja (2013)).

Purchasable Weapons

DEADBOLT (PC) (2016)

Relevant Links:
DEADBOLT (video game) (
DEADBOLT (Steam Store Page)

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