Dust: An Elysian Tail Review
Dust: An Elysian Tail Box Art
System: Xbox 360
Dev: Humble Hearts
Pub: Microsoft
Release: August 15, 2012
Players: 1
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Fantasy Violence, Mild Blood, Mild Language

In fact, this may just be the game's biggest downfall. While the combat in the game is a lot of fun and a serious feast for the eyes, the difficulty level never actually gets threatening. Even on higher levels, Dust has such an expanded repertoire of moves and skills that most of his opponents will crumble easily. Even the boss fights present no real challenge. While their expanded life bars may make the battles last quite long, their patterns are very easy to read and they can be dispatched by following simple flowchart tactics. In fact, the bigger threat in these battles is letting your own boredom mess up the simple flowchart.

Dust: An Elysian Tail Screenshot

This problem only becomes more pronounced when you factor in the RPG-style advancement system. Through grinding out levels and equipping the right gear, you will very easily make Dust a walking furry ball of murder before the game is even halfway done. For those of you who are unchallenged by the main game, there are a number of challenge rooms connected to leaderboards to take advantage of, but this really only appeals to score junkies.

This being said, the combat in Dust is still interesting simply because you have so many different skills to take advantage of. Perhaps it's a good thing that the difficulty doesn't get in the way of Dust's high-caliber story, but it does feel as if the challenge could have been amped up a bit.


When all is said and done, Dust is one heck of a good time. Its story is great, but even when you aren't watching a cutscene or listening to the competent voice acting, you will get plenty of joy out of simply seeing numbers pop up over your enemies' heads in swarms. Still, Dust may not being everyone's bag of tricks. Anyone who is put off by furry art will probably be a little creeped out by the rather realistic dimensions of some of the animal characters in the game. Still, at fifteen dollars, this is a great value. If you are looking for a new 2D action platformer, this may be the best one to come out this summer.

Angelo M. D’Argenio
Contributing Writer
Date: August 16, 2012

Brilliantly animated samurai furries. What more do you want?
Though the game gets mashy at times, it certainly has that Vanillaware ninja feel.
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The music and the voice acting are probably the weakest parts of the game, but that's not saying much.
Play Value
It's definitely worth the fifteen-dollar buy.
Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Immerse yourself in a gorgeous hand-painted world on a search for your true identity.
  • As the mysterious warrior, Dust, you must master the ancient Blade of Ahrah to battle dozens of enemies with an intuitive combat system, take on a variety of quests, discover powerful upgrades throughout the massive open world, and uncover the story of an ancient civilization on the brink of extinction as you fight to uncover your own past.

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