Newly released title The Swindle by Size Five games has dropped this month into almost every current generation system, providing a stealthy bad-guy story like no other. The Award winning indie game developer has produced this epic adventure of the take, boasting a cyber-crime steam-punk scroller with randomly generated levels. The Swindle focuses around the growing threat to thieves; a global security A.I. named the Devil’s Basilisk. You, a thief, try to make your mark on the world by stealing as much as possible and escaping before the police show up. The end goal is to “earn” enough money to unlock your way through skills and abilities to be able to pull off the greatest heist of all time: Steal the Devil’s Basilisk before it can be activated!


The game is not quite a rogue-like, in that there aren’t any item drops or power ups that you’d use to progress more rapidly through the game. However, there is perma-death, and only 100 days (heist attempts) to complete your main objective. The game features an ability tree that is upgradable from your secret sky-base in a dirigible (What else?), and your skills do transfer from each thief after their untimely demise at the hands of some horrid machine.

Though the gameplay style doesn’t deviate much from the norm once you start out, the abilities and new areas are more than enough to keep you hooked for far longer than you might have intended to play. Simple controls and easy mini-game hacking mechanics keep you moving and always looking for the next big score. If you manage to survive and complete a few heists, your current thief gains skill bonuses that add to the overall success of each job. IF you can keep them alive, that is.

All in all, this game is addictive, plain and simple. The other fact: It’s damn near impossible. The game doesn’t initially seem all that tough, until you realize exactly how much money is needed to get through the game in only 100 days. The Swindle will challenge even the most hardcore of gamers, while remaining simple enough for any who want to just dip their toes into the water of international crime. There’s something incredibly satisfying about clearing out a bank vault of thousands of dollars while fleeing robot cops that you just don’t find that often these days.


The other charming feature of this game is the music and art style. The steampunk inspired tunes are easily blended into the background noise of robot patrols and your own footsteps, getting caught in your head for hours afterwards. Similarly, the painted theme helps maintain a cartoon feel, while not losing the serious aspect of destroying property and borrowing assets from the rich for your own gain! Delightful!

The price point for this game is just about right. While it doesn’t have enough story or development to warrant days of gameplay, it has an incredibly high replay value, simply because a full play through takes approximately an hour, and no two heists will ever be the same. There can be some irritating things to note when first playing, but usually that’s more to do with finding a great loot stash with no way to get to it, simply because you haven’t spent any money on upgrades.

The latest in thieving technology brings The Swindle to most major platforms, including PS3, PS4, PSVita, Xbox One and Wii U as well as PC/Mac on steam. The game retails currently for $14.99 USD. Pick it up and let out some steam.

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  • Addicting!


  • Can't obtain some loot due to upgrades you don't have
Author Will Russell

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