They came to Slayaway Camp to have fun, to have a good time, away from it all. But instead… they got pecked, eviscerated, crushed by chocolate eggs, and stung to death by bees.
Slayaway Camp: Butcher’s Cut, developed by Blue Wizard and published by Digerati, is a horror puzzle game with a cute isometric style, murderlicious puns, and a lot of gore. It’s essentially what happens if you mix Minecraft with an amalgam of horror movies and remove the crafting aspect. In their words…
“The mysterious S’lay’a Way tribe once roamed the forests and mountains of this dark region of western Cubetonia. Today their legacy is all but forgotten, and a modern youth camp sits atop their ancient burial site.
But never mind all that. In 1983, on Thursday the 12th, an innocent camp prank went terribly wrong. And now, one year later, the hideously disfigured victim has returned to take his gruesome revenge…
Experience a new dimension of gut-blasting terror as an unspeakable killing force of skull-faced killing maims and kills his way through smart-mouthed, over-sexed, substance-abusing young adults. No victim is safe… no law enforcement enforces the law enough… and no animals are harmed… in the summer horror blockbuster smash hit of 1984.”
You start off as Skullface, a psychotic slasher hellbent on murdering the camp counselors at the titular camp. It just makes sense to kill everyone else… but of course, don’t hurt the kitties!
What was my first impression?
Going into Slayaway Camp I believed that it would be an easy, adorably gruesome little horror game.
And after I played it?
No. No way. I was wrong. I was horribly, horribly wrong. It’s actually a fairly difficult little game, one that requires strategy above all else. Don’t get me wrong, it’s completely adorable and very bloody, but it’s not easy. Exactly what I like!
Slayaway Camp: Butcher’s Cut’s menu screen is set out like some sort of store. Think the Blockbusters of the old days. It’s quite a unique little take on a video game selection screen, one that I quite like and think is one of the good points of the game.
On this little screen, you can find gore packs, killers, videos, and the shop.
Gore packs are probably the most fun thing there. Using coins that you receive in-game, you can buy these individual murder methods from the shop. That essentially just give you more ways to kill the cuboid chibis that constitute as people. My favorite one, thus far, is Death by Chocolate… where you murder someone by throwing a massive chocolate egg on their head. In between that you can murder someone with bees, by shooting arrows into their eyes, and cut their faces off. It’s a pretty good way of relieving stress, if I’m honest, so it’s got that going for it.
Killers are, well, exactly that. They’re skins for your character. You can have anything from a nurse to a sharkman, which is inclusive of a killer hot dog. Yes, a hot dog. On the killers’ screen, you can find a Mystery Box, which goes for 1000 coins and gives you a random killer skin. I got Frederick, notably, based off of Freddy Kruger, on my second Mystery Box purchase.
What is the gameplay itself like?
Playing Slayaway Camp is fairly simple in design and in gameplay. Most of the time it’s a case of studying the setting. It can begin to get a little irritating and monotonous after a few tries at certain levels, however, something that unfortunately comes hand-in-hand with puzzle games like this.
The game itself handles very well. You move your killer by sliding the left joystick. Once you start sliding, you don’t stop until you hit an obstacle, whether that be a person, or a wall, or something else. But even then, you have to be careful. Not all the obstacles are just… there to stop you. There are holes in the ground, fires, pools of water, and electric walls to name a few. I have been killed by all of these. Thankfully you can go back either one step (by pressing L1) or you can restart the entire level (by pressing L2). You can also fast forward (R1), which brings up a small menu.
With the puzzles, I didn’t actually mind them. It requires me to think which I find is beneficial for waking me up. I woke up quite early one morning because it was too hot to sleep, so I played Slayaway Camp for an hour and a half and found it quite… refreshing. The slight monotony of the puzzles was a sore point, but that was most likely because I wasn’t working them out correctly. I admit that I needed a walkthrough for a few because I got stuck on them for… longer than necessary.
Anything else to add?
One: the music. It works very well with the game, haunting and chilling but not over the top so.
Two: the cute as little faces the characters make. You can tell when they’re absolutely terrified. Makes me wanna squish them. Three: if you’re going to make the puzzles challenging, PLEASE MAKE THE HINTS A BIT MORE — USEFUL. And finally, four: the videos ended up playing out very much like the Fast and Furious franchise. They were all titled Slayaway Camp… even when they took place in a hospital, Manhattan, and… space?
But I digress. This was a fun little game. There were eight main videos in total and I loved them all. There were a few more to play, plus extra scenes that I unlocked afterward, so I’ll be playing through those next.
My final thoughts?
If you’re a fan of horror, definitely get this game. It’s come a long way from its Kongregate roots and has developed into something worth spending money on. The homages to 80s horror movies are everywhere, and the puzzles are mind-bending. Danger is everywhere, but so are victims. And there are kitties! What more could you possibly want from a game?!
- THE GOOD
- Lots of character skins
- Cute yet gory
- Soundtrack fits with the game
- THE BAD
- Got a little monotonous at times
- Unhelpful hints
A cute yet bloody little game that has come far since its days on Kongregate. Featuring AXEcellent puns, Death by Chocolate, and a murderous hot dog, this game is gruesomely funny and well worth every cent.