Cuphead: the delicious review of the last dish

Despite what the title suggests, Cuphead: The Delicious Last Course is much more than just flan or fruit tart to top off the gourmet meal that was the original game. This is an expansion that certainly prioritizes quality over quantity, consisting mostly of just six main boss fights, but it’s six incredible boss fights that each stand up as some of the most fun, challenging, and challenging. amazing so far. To sweeten the pot are several new weapons, new charms that each add subtle new approaches to the boss fight, tantalizing secrets with a worthy reward, and an all-new character in Ms. Chalice, who comes with several skills that take away some of the fun. of the benefit of Cuphead’s Intense Difficulty without feeling outright like an “easy mode”. My first playthrough was over in just a few hours, but those are hours that I would consider essential for any Cuphead fan.

The Delicious Last Course is all about making Ms. Chalice, a character who only appeared in the main game as a super-move spirit, a living, breathing real person. To that end, Cuphead and his friend Mugman head to a brand new island where they are told that Chief Saltbaker, the greatest chief in the land, is able to create a Wondertart that can grant Mrs. Chalice a body permanently. The catch, of course, is that they have to collect its ingredients by defeating the powerful enemies guarding them. The story obviously isn’t why anyone’s here, but it’s nonetheless charmingly told with fast-paced cutscenes and more of the exceptional art that fans have come to expect.

… Some of the most spectacular 2D action-platforming bosses I’ve ever faced.

So, the stage is set for another round of some of the most spectacular 2D action-platforming bosses I’ve ever faced. The content of The Delicious Last Course can be accessed almost from the start of a new game, right after going through the first mausoleum and meeting Mrs. Chalice for the first time – but if you’re new or rusty, you’ll definitely want to get your hands wet. feet with other enemies first, as the six bosses in this DLC do not fire their shots. The very first one has you facing projectiles in the air, spikes on the ground that force you to keep moving, shifting platforms that put you in danger if they pick you up at the wrong time, little gnomes that pop out of the ground to shoot you more projectiles, and more gnomes that spawn on platforms and pound you if you stay too long. And this is only the first phase.

Screenshots of Cuphead: The Delicious Last Course

As the mechanical difficulty of The Delicious Last Course bosses has ramped up, Studio MDHR is not without mercy. There’s always an easier difficulty, of course, but there are also a number of new charms and weapons that help tip the balance in your favor, including one that lets you play as Mrs. Chalice herself. When playing as Ms. Chalice, you cannot equip other charms, but she is naturally equipped with a double jump, a dodge that she can use while on the ground to roll through obstacles, a dashing parry which makes it much easier to parry objects that come straight at you, and most importantly, four HP instead of the standard three.

Some may look at this and think “oh, so this is basically an extra easy mode”, but that’s not entirely true. Ms. Chalice also has a far worse single jump than Cuphead, so she has using his double jump to cross some obstacles that Cuphead could easily pass; her dash parry is great for objects coming directly at her, but is harder to use than the traditional double-jump parry in some situations; and she’s unable to equip any of the other powerful charms available – like my new personal favorite, the Ring of Hearts, which rewards you with HP on your first, third, and sixth parries, essentially giving you the ability to double up your HP if you can successfully parry attacks from a boss. Another powerful one is the coffee charm, which passively recharges your super meter alongside all the normal ways to build it, meaning you have access to your super moves much more regularly.

As for the new weapons, I’m a big fan of the homing weapon called Crackshot, which can be fired without worrying too much about aiming and has a special EX move that drops a turret, which can then be parried and thrown into an enemy for heavy damage. Another big new addition is the Converge shot, which fires three full-screen projectiles in a wide spread, and this spread can be narrowed by holding down the aim button. It’s a great weapon for quickly taking out small, weak enemies that are spawned by a boss, making it a perfect pairing for my usual go-to weapon, the charge shot.

To get the parts needed to afford these new weapons and charms, The Delicious Last Course introduces a replacement for the main game’s run-and-gun levels in the form of a series of mini bosses led by the King of Games. At the start of the DLC, you’ll be able to climb a ladder to reach the king of games’ castle (which is a totally awesome hand-sculpted stop motion model, by the way), and from there you’re free to challenge its champions. The catch is that each of these chess piece-themed mini-boss fights isn’t won with your weapons or charms – they’re won entirely with your parry technique. One fight requires you to parry all the peaks in an army of pawns, while another requires you to blow out a bunch of candles in order to make the boss damageable with a parry. They’re all smart fights, and tackling them is a fun change of pace and unique challenge, especially when you try gauntlet mode and try to beat them all in a single life. More than anything, though, it’s definitely a step up from run-and-gun levels when it comes to earning the currency needed to buy new gear.

Everything else in The Delicious Last Course is what you’d expect from Cuphead, but to an even greater degree. Studio MDHR’s Maja Moldenhauer said the animation frame count in this DLC alone is comparable to the entire base game, which sounded crazy to think about before playing – but now that I did, it’s not hard to believe. Each phase of each boss in The Delicious Last Course totally transforms the battle. You’ll go from battling an ice magician to an evil refrigerator to a deranged snowflake throughout a fight, with each phase having anywhere from three to seven unique attacks, and each attack so absurdly packed with detail that I didn’t even notice most of the little bits until I recorded and looked at my footage. This includes things like the way these gnomes climb up the side of the mountain and slide under the fur, the way the background changes subtly with each phase of the fight against Sheriff Winchester, or the way the snowflake The aforementioned deranged Snow literally twists her own body to pry out her eye for one of her attacks.

Each attack is exceptionally well telegraphed

The magic of Cuphead’s boss design, and something that all of the bosses in this DLC exemplify, is that even if he throws a ton of stuff at you, it’s all usually pretty easy to dodge if you know it’s coming. Each attack is exceptionally well telegraphed, the patterns are easily recognizable, and the visual language is always simple and clear. So even if I was expected to do something that normally isn’t very intuitive, like parrying a pink bell to close the mouth of a cow’s skull floating in acid to create a platform- shape, it’s something I can quickly figure out because I’ve learned to parry pink items before now. The Delicious Last Course deftly nails that awkward balance between being tough but fair, and saves the really tough stuff for expert mode, which offers a very interesting challenge for die-hard fans once the main campaign is over. And for those who want even more of a challenge, well there’s something for you too, but I wouldn’t spoil what it is or how to get it.

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