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Lady in a Leotard with a Gun - cheaper than a Freddo but twice as fun

Updated: Apr 29

Have you ever bought a game just because it was cheap? I did just that this weekend. On a casual perusal of the PS Store I found a game for 9p, cheaper than two bubbalicious from the corner shop.

At that price I wasn't expecting much at all. If it had a lady in a leotard with a gun, I was going to call it a success. What I found was a surprisingly fun, simple shooter. And I do mean simple in any way you can think of. Graphics that make Tomb Raider 1 (1996) look current gen, no story to speak of and midi music.

Gameplay is also simple. You start the level, shoot all the enemies, and go to the exit to the next level to do it all again. You have one gun and minimal controls. You can move, shoot, roll and jump. There were some surprising variations in the levels though, rather than just being corridors full of enemies there was also a level with some basic platforming and we even went 2D for a bit. It was refreshing to change the perspective like that.

I found this game extremely satisfying to play. The challenge of doing some of the levels without taking damage was great. Level 10 in particular I found difficult but that could be that I was on a moving platform and trying to aim at the same time and I'm not good at that. But it did feel like I had done something when I pulled it off, no secret bad consequences for my actions, just the reward of the exit door and a sense of pride and accomplishment.

As much as I love story driven games, the odder the better, there was something quite relaxing about going "I'm gonna kill some dudes" and then mowing down enemies until you are satisfied. It was a bit of a palate cleanser after finishing Divinity Original Sin 2 as well. Nice to do something where I didn't have to constantly second guess my actions for negative repercussions.

There's also something rather beautiful about the game doing exactly what it says on the tin. Not overpromised, not overhyped, not misrepresented in any way. It was a hell of a lot less buggy than some recent releases I've played too. Another point for the game's simple construction.

It seems though that people have been expecting way too much from this game. The reviews are... Not great. Worst game ever is thrown about a lot but to be honest I'm not sure why. It's perfectly competent at what it does, it's fun and - this is is the most important part here - it told you exactly what to expect on the store page. If you bought a game for a couple of pence and expected Borderlands I don't know what to tell you, but your level of delulu could be weaponised.

I've been burnt by so many PR people in the past when it comes to games, trailers get bigger and flashier and tell you less and less and so when the final product is delivered into your paws you can't help but be disappointed. I liked the feeling of being pleasantly surprised for once.

Perhaps that's the takeaway here. Instead of all the promo bells and whistles and feeling like your game must be the game of games, maybe it's okay to just be a shooter, or a puzzle game. I mean look at Tetris, to this day it is well loved and it really isn't comprised of much. Maybe we need to go simpler sometimes, get back to basics. Get the gameplay right and then build things around it.

If you fancy trying Lady in a Leotard with a Gun out, it's still on PSN at time of writing for £0.09. It'll be the best 9p you've ever spent. Thanks, The Voices Games. I might have to try out more of your stuff.

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