Button Men is a duel game where the up close and personal battles are waged at the throw of a series of dice. To win you have to make use of all your skill and cunning. Can you prevail or will you be left dead in the gutter?
Button Men is based directly on the abstract board game that has been popular for the last 10 years. You choose a character, and difficulty level and then you are thrown into the fray. There are 24 unique characters that all have their different sets of dice to play with. I find myself looking at the short biographies found for each of the Button Men, and keep this as a setting for the battle at hand. Other than that there is no story to Button Men, no reason why these characters want to kill the opponents.
The dice are rolled automatically, and you can choose a number of different ways to attack during your turn. Attacking using a highly rolled dice is perhaps the most obvious attack. For example taking 4/8 with an 7/8. Skill attacks demand a bit of basic mathematics, and you have to add dice to match that of an enemy dice. For example a 1/8 and a 5/10 to beat a 6/20. You get the points from the taken dice meaning you should aim for the larger ones. It is really exciting taking turns attacking, and forcing the opponent to pass as you got him/her stuck with low dice against your high rollers. The game is played in rounds, and once you are out of dice the round is over. To win the round you simply have to get the highest score, and the first combatant to reach three won rounds wins the match. There are also other kinds of attacks using for example negative dice, and all is explained in an easy to understand tutorial.
There are only two game modes in Button Men: 1-player and 2-player. The 1-player mode is played as single matches against the AI. Depending on the adversary there are slight variations to the playing style, and aggressiveness of the AI. 2-player games are either played on the same device called hot seat, or by means of Bluetooth. Playing against a friend on the bus can really get intense.
Button Men has got a great polished look to it with a definite dark gothlike style to the graphics. In some ways the interface, and characters could have been created by Neil Gaiman. The music is good uptempo electronica, and sound effects in the form of rolled dice and weapons fire is superb. You can’t play your own music at all. There is vibration when you loose a round, and I can’t find any way to turn it off.
Button Men has got one major flaw, and that is a definite lack of gamelife. You only play single matches, and the game doesn’t keep track of any statistics. I really hope for a massive update as the basic gameplay is really fun. Perhaps a sort of story mode or at least a competition mode letting you progress. And statistics tracking is really a must for a game such as Button Men.
Button Men is a truly exciting dice duel game combining luck and strategy. The lack of content hurts it quite a lot but I can still recommend it as a worthwhile game. The 2-player mode is great to humiliate your friends with.
Button Men $1.99
Seller: Thrust Interactive