Costume Quest

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German box cover.

Costume Quest is a role-playing video game developed and published by Double Fine Productions on iOS on 2010-10-10 and later published on several other platforms. In the game a brother or sister go out trick or treating. One of them is kidnapped by monsters who believe they are a giant piece of candy, and it's up to you to rescue them. In addition to the main quest, you also collect new costumes, each with new powers, meet new friends who will help you on the way, and explore various areas as you trick or treat into adventure.

Personal

I remember seeing snippets of Costume Quest online when it came out, and I bought it in a bundle years later, but didn't play it until 2021. The game did a good job of keeping my interests, and I played it all the way through over the course of a few days, beating it on 2021-01-26. I reached level 10, collected all the stamps, costumes, and cards, and got all the achievements except those from Grubbins On Ice, which I have yet to play.

Status

I own this game on Steam and have beat it.

Review

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7 7 7 6 5

Best Version: Windows

— This section contains spoilers! —

Good

  • The game does a great job of capturing the way children feel on Halloween. For a trick-or-treating child, donning a costume makes them feel like the actual thing they're representing. The powerful animations during combat really make this feel real.
  • The three locations (neighborhood, mall, and fair, each well-decorated) are all perfect for the game's theme.
  • The combat mechanic of requiring the player to respond to stimulus both during offense and defense is a nice way to keep the player focused on the game rather than the more passive approach in so many other RPGs. I also like that you are put back to full health at the end of each combat, so you're not fiddling with healing spells and potions the whole game.
  • I like all the included mini games. They're both enjoyable and fitting to the theme. Hide n' seek, bobbing for apples, trading cards, etc.
  • The various puns and jokes spoken by the kids throughout the game are a fantastic addition. Most are just worth a chuckle, but some made me laugh out loud. The victory animations for the various costumes are also funny.
  • It's nice that you can play as a girl.
  • I felt the length was just right. It's not a drawn-out RPG, but it gives enough time to develop the characters and let you have fun with them.
  • The backgrounds during combat faithfully recreate the map of the area you're in in miniature, which is a nice touch.
  • I love that the cat's butthole is so conspicuous.
  • The carpet in the arcade is spot-on.

Bad

  • The enemies are too similar. You have an orc-like thing, another orc-like thing, and a crow, all of which fight the same way and use the same abilities throughout the entire game. This means there isn't much combat strategy required, and it's easy to game (near the end, I equipped stun stamps to each party member and the enemies could never attack once!). Only the bosses need any strategy.
  • The audio isn't that interesting. Although the orchestration is professionally made and fits combat, I would have much preferred some stand-alone tracks for the exploration sections and mini games rather than all ambiance.
  • Dying means nothing in this game. If you lose in combat, you just try it again until you win. I feel like losing a battle should set you back at least somewhat.
  • I would prefer the game used a button to advance text rather than a timeout. Sometimes, when I read the dialogue faster than the game expected me to, I would press a button on the controller, and, when I pressed B, it would skip the entire cutscene and there was no way to rewatch it, and, since the game auto-saves all the time, you can't even quit and restart to go back and see it.
  • I wish your characters walked a little faster, or there was a run ability. When you use the robot's wheelie shoes, you realize just how slow you walk, especially when you have a long way to go. You can just always play as the robot, but this takes away the fun of all the other costumes.
  • I would have liked the ability to skip the longer combat animations. They're fun to watch at first, but a bit annoying after you've seen then dozens of times. Thankfully, none of them are ever too long.
  • The environments are never so large that you need a map, still, I would have liked one.
  • While it's great that you can play as either the bother or sister, it would have been nice if there were some significant differences between the game when you do. All they game does it swap the models, all the dialogue remains the same.
  • I don't know why they made one of the main buttons a pause button.
  • The Statue of Liberty costume, although it has funny animation, is useful only as a lock-and-key mechanism. It's not very good in combat, and isn't thematic to the game.
  • Like so many others, this game awards achievements for simply doing the things necessary to beat the game, and I never feel like that was an achievement.
  • When an enemy is stunned, the camera doesn't move for them. Stun all three enemies, and you'll be looking at a strange angle for several seconds.

Ugly

  • Nothing.

Media

Box Art

Documentation

Fan Art

Videos

Longplay.
Speedrun.

Links

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