Inukari: Chase of Deception Review: Almost There, but Not Quite

by David Sanchez May 11, 2022 @ 8:00 pm

Inukari: Chase of Deception Gameplay

Reviewed on Switch

Inukari: Chase of Deception has quite a bit going for it. The game has a decent pixelated look. The core gameplay concepts are solid. And it’s pretty fun. But it’s also clumsy, janky, and lacking heavily in polish. The result is a mixed bag of a game that’s probably worth checking out mostly if you love 2D platformers — and if you catch it on sale.

You play as the titular Inukari, a forest god tasked with restoring balance in the world. The story is okay for what it is, though there’s a lot of dialogue that’s not written as well as it could’ve been. As such, it can be a little tough to get through. You also can’t just skip dialogue text sequences you’ve already seen if you die and retry, which gets annoying fast and causes an unnecessary break in the action.

Platforming That’s Challenging Yet Underwhelming at Times

Inukari - Chase of Deception

The goal is fairly simple in Inukari: Chase of Deception. Reach the end of each level, fight big bosses, and move on. The cool thing about the game’s levels is that you won’t just be running from left to right. You’ll also be running from right to left, wall-jumping to climb up, going down, and even moving diagonally around the screen. The verticality the game offers is enjoyable, and there are a lot of obstacles in your way to keep things interesting.

Where things get a little hairy, however, is in the game’s character animations and controls. Though it feels okay for the most part, controlling Inukari can be stiff at times. Not to mention the character animations are a bit floaty and rough-feeling. It’s nothing you won’t be able to deal with, but there are so many other platformers offering tight, precise controls, it’s impossible to look past the lack of polish here.

Boss battles are kind of a drag. They’re not really enjoyable, and these larger enemies rely on the same dirty tricks for their duration. While playing these parts, I just wanted to move on to get to the much more entertaining platforming bits.

There are also some bugs in Inukari: Chase of Deception. There were times where the character would meet a tragic demise, which would show me a screen with the number of lives I had left. I died twice and didn’t see the number of lives go down. On my third or fourth death, though, I got the game over screen. In addition, sometimes loading into a level can take a moment, but the game appears to just lock up. It doesn’t actually freeze, but the way the screen simply stays paused is jarring.

An Okay Platformer, All Things Considered

Inukari: Chase of Deception

The pixel art of Inukari: Chase of Deception works pretty well and is probably the game’s strongest point. It can look a little generic and repetitive at times, but overall, it’s a solid choice of art style, and there are some cool backgrounds. The music, on the other hand, is pretty bad and just sort of awkward-sounding.

For what it’s worth, I had a reasonable amount of fun playing Inukari: Chase of Deception. The game isn’t great. And unfortunately, it’s a stretch to even call it good. This is an average platformer with some cool level designs and neat hooks to keep you playing, but there are other superior options out there. Check it out if you’re a diehard platforming fan and you see it at a discounted price. Otherwise, maybe sit this one out.

Score: 5 out of 10

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