Monkey King: Hero is Back was a pleasant surprise for me when I reviewed it earlier this year. With great visuals, fun combat, and some solid writing, it brought me back to a simpler time. It felt like the kind of game I would rent from Blockbuster as a kid in the hopes I would strike gold and find a hidden gem.
As part of the season pass, we now have the game’s first story DLC: Uproar in Heaven. Is this new addition a great reason to pick up the pass, or will you be left wanting more? While we wait for the second story DLC, let’s find out how this first pack fares!
Great Ideas That Fizzle Out Too Quickly
The premise for this first DLC takes us back 500 years prior to the main game’s events. It’s time for us to finally get some details on that epic battle in the heavens the game told us about before we dove into our adventure. So far so good.
The DLC uses still art and narration for the cutscenes, which works fine here thanks to solid voicework and stellar art across the board. When you get into Uproar in Heaven, you’ll quickly find that it’s going to be a series of boss fights with some story in between.
Again, no problem, boss rushes can be a great way to offer some new gameplay mechanics. In this regard, Uproar in Heaven largely succeeds.
Since you’re fighting in the heavens themselves, your feet never touch the ground. This removes some of the slow and repetitive combat from the main game. Instead, you’re flying around with a full suite of powers and some impressive attacks.
The clashes in this DLC are epic in every sense of the word, and there’s some nice variety between each fight. Where Uproar in Heaven really stumbles, is in the length. There are only three fights to complete in this $10 DLC.
I got to the DLC’s ending in less than an hour, having only lost once on the second boss fight. You can imagine my surprise when the DLC cut to credits at a point where it seemed like the story was just getting started.
Now, there is a second DLC coming that I imagine will continue and finish this story, but given the fact that the season pass is $30, this next pack has a lot of pressure on it to add some serious value.
I think I could have been more forgiving if Uproar in Heaven feature 6-10 boss fights, but with just three to experience it feels like it’s over before it even begins. This is a shame, because the new combat is flashy and bombastic in the best ways. I would have loved to see more of it.
A Polished and Visually Arresting Style
Despite being incredibly short, Uproar in Heaven has some nice variety in each of its fights and in the art as well. The still images used for cutscenes don’t feel like low-budget compromises, thanks to the superb style and detail in each image.
The music once again also lends a cinematic and upbeat score that matches the fast-paced fights nicely. Much like the main game, Uproar in Heaven surprised me with some great new combat and fun boss fights, but the surprise ending and short length left me with a bad taste in my mouth.
Here’s hoping the second DLC remedies things, but anyone who purchases Uproar in Heaven for $10 will find that they spent too much on so little gameplay.
Final Score: 6.0/10
A copy of Monkey King: Uproar in Heaven was provided to PS4 Experts for review purposes.
Article by - Bradley Ramsey
Insert date - 12/6/19