Anomaly Collapse: Review

Anomaly Collapse review cover

Anomaly Collapse is a turn-based roguelite strategy game developed by RocketPunch Games and published by Spiral Up Games. The game was released on Steam on the 12 April 2024.

Anomaly Collapse takes place in a world populated by anthropomorphic animals that has been invaded by fungi of alien origin. It is here that Glitch, the first playable character in Anomaly Collapse, makes his first appearance. Glitch is an elite agent of the Anomaly Reaction Association, sent to deal with the crisis in Episilon, one of the cities affected by the fungal invasion.

Glitch’s mission was to escort a team of engineers to install neutralisers. But an attack by a giant creature scatters the group. Glitch must attempt to reunite with the team to place all the neutralisers and eliminate the threat.
We soon discover that it will not be easy to find the other team members, and something strange is happening to our characters’ memories.

Strategy on a grid

Anomaly Collapse is a strategy title in which combat takes place on a linear grid. In Anomaly Collapse, strategy is everything and every decision must be carefully considered to avoid falling victim to the enemy.

Anomaly Collapse screenshot 2

At the start of each game, we can choose to engage in combat or resolve one of the events that randomly appear on the map.

Each battle is fought in turn, and each character has a limited amount of action points and movement. Depending on active and passive ‘anomalies’, additional points can be earned and special abilities can be acquired throughout the game.

In the field, we do not fight with just one character, but the whole party is involved. Anomaly Collapse allows us to make the most of the cooperation of team members to maximise the effectiveness of attacks. In fact, it is possible to launch cooperative attacks or flank attacks against the enemy.

In some cases, there will be objects on the battlefield that we can use against the enemy by pushing or exploding them. In addition, like any other game of the same genre, such as Inkulinati, there are environmental modifiers that can give bonuses or maluses. A burning tile, for example, will steal health from characters who pass over it and give them Burn status, which steals health per turn.

Anomaly Collapse screenshot 1

Once all members of the team have completed their available actions, you can hand over to your opponents, who will use increasingly complex strategies and attacks as the game progresses.

Grinding to evolve

Once all the enemies have been defeated, the battle is over and we can collect the loot, which consists of a reward of our choice and ‘Tempusium’, the game’s currency.

These loot items are called anomalies, which would normally be banned by the Anomaly Reaction Association, but given the situation our party members decide to use them.

These anomalies are both passive and active, providing stat boosts such as: Strength, Health, Mental, Support, etc.; or in other cases, new abilities such as new attack types or unique combat boosts such as increased damage in co-op.

Never stop investigating

As we defeat the alien creatures, the Investigation Bar will fill up. At a certain percentage of the bar, we will be presented with an optional event that we can choose to resolve or not. Within the quest there are several events that take place around the protagonists and we will be forced to make choices, depending on the choices made we will be provided with more or less rare loot.

Anomaly Collapse screenshot 3

At the end of the investigation we will be able to find the missing neutraliser, but it will have attracted a very strong creature that we will have to face. The boss we will face will not be alone, but we will find ourselves in a grid full of minions trying to defeat us. Until we defeat the boss, the minions will keep coming and threatening us.

Once we have defeated the boss, we will have cleared one area and can move on to the next, which will have a new setting, new enemies and new challenges.

Anomaly Collapse screenshot 4

Like any roguelite, we will inevitably be defeated as the game progresses. Once the team is defeated, we can start a new run by choosing a leader from the unlocked characters. Stats will be reset, but some initial anomalies will be retained, making it easier to progress through the game as we get closer to the end.

Each time the game restarts, our characters will forget everything they have done. They will face the creatures and enter Episilon as if it were the first time.

Final thoughts

Anomaly Collapse has good cartoon-like graphics and a pleasant, unobtrusive soundtrack. The combat system is fairly easy to learn, and the information provided by the interface allows us to carefully evaluate our moves in order to structure good strategies.

The cooperation and flanking mechanics also allow us to be creative in our attacks, but the one-dimensional grid limits our creativity and forces us to attack almost always in the same way.

Anomaly Collapse suffers from a lack of variety of enemies in each area, as well as environments that only change from one area to the next, adding a certain visual monotony to the run. The story also fails to fully engage, remaining too vague.

Our verdict

Anomaly Collapse has some interesting features and offers a good deal of fun, but on closer inspection it fails to make a lasting impression and becomes one of those games that are played and then forgotten.

  • Combat system
  • Polished graphics
  • Uninvolving storyline
  • Low variability of enemies and environments