Khimera: Destroy All Monster Girls

This game is completely free, so you should go click to download it and then come back to read this while it installs.

If that seems like a forceful recommendation- well, it is. Khimera puts in my mind a similar feeling to the older school of freeware indie titles- Cave Story, Iji, AnUntitledStory; there’s a certain I-don’t-know-what essence to the indie games of that era that more modern releases don’t share. I don’t mean to imply that somehow makes them better (or worse!) than what’s being released lately, but it does make them feel very nostalgic, especially to someone who used to run a youtube channel showcasing the best the scene had to offer.

Whatever that essence is, Khimera manages to capture it. The closest comparison I can think of gameplay-wise would be Shantae; a mostly linear melee-combat platformer with some occasional exploration to do. There’s a touch of Megaman in there too, with an open progression through the levels and new abilities unlocked each time you beat a boss.

Chelshia the chimera is no more than a few seconds old when pirates ransack her hometown and she is given the task of hunting them down and beating every last treasure out of them. There’s some entertaining dialogue along the way and the many varied NPC designs are all a delight.

Combat’s a little tough to get used to- Chelshia’s range is limited to how far she can swing her arm, so finding the sweetspot between landing a hit and taking a hit is a skill that’ll take longer to develop than the hour I’ve given it. Luckily she has a forgiving amount of health, extendible through finding the hidden monsterchef Gourmet Gal in each level.

Fin or Bin:

There’s a heaping pile of collectible stuff to grab, and various challenges (100% treasure, no death, etc) for the achievement-crazed to sink their teeth into. No-death challenges have never been that interesting to me, but I’d like to at least Finish the collectible aspect.


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