Caveman Warriors is a 2D side-scrolling action platformer set against a prehistoric backdrop. Players must take control of Jack, Brienne, Moe and Liliana as they look to save their kidnapped children from a group of invading aliens. Using each character’s unique skill set, the group must traverse five vastly different worlds, facing the challenges that each one of them presents. It’s a simple plot that provides more than enough motivation for the protagonists to push forward through increasingly difficult levels.
Using a mixture of jumps, attacks and special moves, players must cross each level. The four protagonists all have their own moveset and special attacks. Utilising those individual movesets is an important part of level progression and they also play a vital role during the boss fights.
Boss fights make up a large portion of gameplay in Caveman Warriors and unfortunately, they aren’t particularly challenging or interesting. Each boss has a fairly limited moveset that requires little to no skill to defeat. What little difficulty is present is derived from the lives system that the title uses, forcing players to restart the entire level should they run out. Punishing players by having them repeat the entire level again if they die does not add difficulty, instead it results in a repetitive and boring experience - it’s game design choice that feels incredibly outdated.
A score system in each level records the number of items collected from defeated enemies, giving players a reason to return to the title. There are also collectibles scattered throughout each level that unlock digital in-game comics. Even with the collectibles across each level, there still isn’t that much for players to do. With only five levels, and a handful of collectibles, most players will likely move on from Caveman Warriors within a few hours.
The four different characters can also be controlled via the game’s four player split-screen co-op mode. Using the separate Joycons, players can team up to take on the alien invaders. It’s a welcome addition to the title and one that takes full advantage of the Nintendo Switch’s position as a multiplayer-focused console. The co-op mode is undoubtedly Caveman Warriors’ biggest selling point and the main reason why anyone should consider purchasing the game.
Visually, the game is competent but uninspired. The cartoony art style fits the other-worldly narrative but the visuals never impressed me during my time with the title. The same could be said for every other facet of presentation. Everything from the UI to the sound design feels basic and the lack of originality really shines through in every facet of the presentation.
A lot of Caveman Warriors’ design feels outdated; it’s a title that relies on mediocre action-platforming, on top of average cartoon visuals and a simplistic combat system. It never goes out of its way to impress you, but it also won’t leave you wanting more. If you’re looking for some four player split-screen fun, Caveman Warriors will - just about - entertain you. Even with that in mind, it’s hard to recommend Caveman Warriors considering the excellent library of independently developed titles on the Switch.
Caveman Warriors (Reviewed on Nintendo Switch)
The game is average, with an even mix of positives and negatives.
A lot of Caveman Warriors’ design feels outdated; it’s a title that relies on mediocre action-platforming, on top of average cartoon visuals and a simplistic combat system. It never goes out of its way to impress you, but it also won’t leave you wanting more.