Terror of Hemasaurus preview – monster mash and button smash

Some indies make their influences so brazen that it’s impossible to avoid mentioning them – Terror of Hemasaurus is, for all purposes and intent, a modern-day take on the arcade classic Rampage. Giant monsters, wreckable skyscrapers, hapless citizens – you know the score.

Terror of Hemasaurus cranks up not just the carnage but also the crassness. It features buckets of gore, gratuitous swearing, and the ability to punt puny humans through the air. If you want to compare it to another retro classic, Primal Rage is a good shout, even though we didn’t come across any urinating gorillas in the demo.

There’s a plot of sorts holding the package together, involving monsters emerging from melting ice caps and a zealous cult awaiting their arrival. The Church of the Holy Lizard, no less.

Stages scroll from left to right, and each has its own objectives including a damage quota and a death count. Holding down the attack button commences a barrage of punches, making it possible to simply stroll along the street, taking out cars, citizens, and smaller buildings without breaking a sweat.

Climbing buildings is far less awkward than in Rampage, and once enough damage has been dealt, buildings satisfyingly sway before crashing to the ground – not only thrilling but also quite the sight, sending debris airborne. Cathartic is probably the best way to describe it, even though the sound effects are initially grate.

Some missions provide additional challenges, such as trying to kick citizens into the path of incoming helicopters – a case of simple timing. Hopefully, there are plenty of other ideas such as this to help prevent tedium from settling. The presence of stronger police and military forces won’t be enough to carry the experience alone.

Curiously compelling physics coupled with the focus on carnage and destruction make for an exciting match, selling us on the premise almost instantly. While it’s too early to predict whether Terror of Hemasaurus will be a smash hit or not, it seems fair to say that it’ll find its niche. We’ve been without a new Rampage for a very long time.  

Terror of Hemasaurus is coming to consoles and PC later this year via Digerati and Loren Lemcke / Kittehface. A demo is available now on Xbox One/Xbox Series.