Often when I think of Warhammer games, my mind immediately goes to strategy.
That’s no disrespect intended to the brilliant Space Marine or Inquisitor Martyr, but it’s a genre the IP has become best known for and it makes a lot of sense considering its tabletop origins.
So when Shootas, Blood and Teef came across my desk and I booted it up on my Switch (after a painful loading screen, I may hasten to add) I was shocked, but pleasantly surprised by what I ended up with.
This is a 2D side-scroller shooter with a very cartoony, border-line cel-shaded art style. It’s still full of Waaagh, bullets, explosions and, of course, blood, but it manages to be very different from what you might expect.
Unlike the other 40,000 behemoths, this is definitely a lighter game. One you’d probably play between other titles and hop on for a quick blast here and there. It’s quite refreshing actually, especially since it really leans into the distinct, unique humour of the Orks rather than trying to build up a massive, interconnected plot.
You’re immediately being narrated to by an ork, which already removes the typical space marine chatter you’re probably used to. And you’ll finding yourself sniggering, not just at Orky disdain for humies and their stupid ways, but at the ways they rib on themselves as well.
This is the first Warhammer 40,000 game in a long time where I’ve actually felt a little bit closer to the IP, rather than a distant observer, wishing I knew the nuances and intricacies that make up the majority of the plot. I feel like I better understand the humor, the relationship between orks and humans, but also some of the classes and what makes them distinct.
In Shootas, Blood and Teef, you can choose between four classes which are faithful to 40,000. There’s Stormboy who loves the rockets, Flash Git who’s about missiles, Weird Boy and Beast Snagga. All play quite differently, but for the most part you are just shooting at anything in your path, using the right stick to aim and right trigger to fire.
You can also buy up all different kinds of weapons, so it doesn’t make too much of a big difference who you pick out of the gate as you’ll be able to grab their equivalent weapon eventually provided you have enough teef.
The game is a rock-and-roller coaster adventure of blowing things up, shooting, and taking on some meaty bosses, all with heavy rock music blaring in the background. There’s a good balance of tough and satisfying moments, the game never really getting itself too caught up on forcing too many of the other.
As it’s also quite short and sweet, clocking in at around a 3 to 4 hour campaign, it’s a perfect game for Switch, quite frankly. A game best experienced handheld, despite the awful loading times, stuttering and lag. But due to its length, it’s good for short bursts and there may even be some replayability depending on how you fare.
If you fancy something with lots of shooting, want something new from your Warhammer games, and fancy jamming to some heavy metal music on your headphones, this is a great way to pass the time and a fun entry point for a vast, complex world.
Shootas, Blood and Teef is an unexpected delight at times. It’s not perfect, has some performance problems on Switch and is over in pretty short order, but there’s few better entry points into the Warhammer 40,000 world, and certainly not many that bring a smile to your face. The Orks are great and prove it in heavy rock-and-roller fashion.
+Shooting handles great with a great variety of weapons
+A short but mostly sweet campaign
+Great soundtrack and challenging bosses
– Some of the longest loading screens I’ve seen on Switch
– Slowdown, lag, and hiccups affect performance
Warhammer 40,000 Shootas, Blood and Teef is out now on PC, Xbox, PlayStation and Switch
Played on Nintendo Switch
Code Kindly Provided by Rogueside