Review – Demonic Supremacy

I was complaining about the increasing saturation of the retro-styled first-person shooter genre (or “boomer shooter” for whoever thinks this is a decent label) just a few weeks ago, after the release of the excessively edgy Bloodhound. I think I have now reached the peak point of saturation with this brand new release, Demonic Supremacy. Generic, glitchy, and lacking in vision, this might possibly be the blandest and least interesting of all of those shooters released in recent memory.

Demonic Supremacy

You will see a lot of these cheap-looking demons.

The game starts off with a minuscule but straightforward premise: every 3,000 years or so, a random schmuck is selected to inherit some demonic powers and then has to venture through a hellish tower, killing monsters until finally meeting the devil himself. That’s pretty much it. Keep on killing demons inside a tower until the game tells you to stop. This is where the first issue with the game can be witnessed. The premise does not allow for a lot of interesting variety in level design. These retro-styled shooters shine the brightest when levels are large, full of secrets, platforming sections, exploration. Demonic Supremacy has none of those. Each “level” is best described as a mere gauntlet against a set number of enemies. Kill the necessary amount of demons, move onto the next level.

So we’re basically thrown into small arenas, with no movement puzzles, just braindead shooting. And that wouldn’t have been a big issue if the combat was fun. It isn’t. It’s functional, sure, with the controls being responsive enough, but weapons lack punch. Recoil is nearly nonexistent, and you don’t feel the impact of your shots. To make matters worse, there is no platforming (not even a jump button), with all at your disposal being your guns, a pointless dash, and a paralyzing shout that, whilst useful in tricky situtations, takes an eternity to cool off.

Demonic Supremacy minigun

This is the least exciting minigun in FPS history.

One thing that’s nearly mandatory for a shooter like Demonic Supremacy is a stable framerate. It doesn’t always need to be a guaranteed 60fps (Doom works wonders on the Switch at 30fps), but for the love of a cacodemon, have a stable framerate. Demonic Supremacy doesn’t offer that. Despite being a game with a cheap presentation, be it in its visuals or soundtrack, it struggles to keep a stable framerate from the moment you boot the game up. Low twenties were the most common sight.

Demonic Supremacy wall

They just keep walking on walls like they think they’re Spider-Man.

Watching demons’ guts fly through the air is fun at first, but the repetitive encounters, poor presentation, bad framerate and minuscule scope all make Demonic Supremacy feel underwhelming. It’s the poster child of the saturation of the retro-styled first person shooter genre, being lackluster in terms of vision, presentation, polish, and gameplay. When you’re given the option to grab games like Doom (both retro and new), Quake, Turok, Dusk, and many others, on the Switch, why would I even bother with the underwhelming stepchild that decided to arrive a few years too late to the party?

Graphics: 4.0

It has a style of its own, but it still looks cheap. To make matters worse, the framerate, whilst stable, is really low for a supposedly fast-paced shooter.

Gameplay: 5.0

The controls are responsive enough, but the terrible framerate is a letdown for a game touted to be a fast-paced arena shooter. The level design is beyond basic, there’s no exploration.

Sound: 4.5

The occasional, heavily compressed rock tunes to make me forget about the stock sound effects stemming from the guns and the demons I’m killing.

Fun Factor: 4.0

Watching demons’ guts fly through the air is fun at first, but the repetitive encounters, poor presentation, bad framerate and minuscule scope all make Demonic Supremacy feel underwhelming.

Final Verdict: 4.5

Demonic Supremacy is available now on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X, PC and Switch.

Reviewed on Switch.