HomeVideo GamesGAME REVIEW | Explosive Gore and Minor Repetition in "Phantom Fury"

GAME REVIEW | Explosive Gore and Minor Repetition in "Phantom Fury"

GAME REVIEW | Explosive Gore and Minor Repetition in "Phantom Fury"

When Shelly Harrison made her debut eight years ago in Bombshell, the top-down adventure was met with shrugs. It wasn’t until she entered the first-person shooter realm with Ion Fury where her popularity began to rise. The game was met with much more fanfare, as it helped to bring back an era of FPSes not seen since the 1990s. Now Bombshell has returned in Phantom Fury, a game that has as much in common as Duke Nukem 3D as it does with the recent trend of over-the-top throwback action films.

Taking place a few years after Ion Fury, Phantom Fury has Bombshell awakening to new surroundings. Now somewhere in the middle of some post-apocalyptic desert, Bombshell is now tasked to find the Demon Core, an artifact that can destroy all of humankind. But as we all know, our hero isn’t some pushover, thanks in part to her arsenal and her bionic arm. With this new mission, Bombshell looks to shoot, beat, and blow up baddies into meat chunks as the fate of the world hangs in the balance.

One of the big reasons why Ion Fury was so much fun was due to its lack of seriousness. It knew it was an over-the-top bloodfest that aimed to recapture a vibe from the era of nu-metal and gangsta rap. The same can easily be said about Phantom Fury, which takes what it learned previously and amplifies it to higher degrees. However, that does lead to a slight issue the more you play.

While it is a lot of fun getting headshots or literally punching villains into pureed beef, it can get a tad old the longer you experience it. It shares the same issue with Activision’s 2013 Deadpool game. Both games spend more time making great jokes, and less time evolving the gameplay as it progresses. Because of this, moments that should be exciting to watch come off as somewhat tedious.

With that being said, Phantom Fury does a surprisingly good job with waking its players up when the time is right. Whether it’s a tank-like mutant trying to ram you down or one of the boss battles, there are moments that will keep you on your toes. Perhaps one of the more fun things to discover is how interactive the world is around you. Yes, blowing up a computer or two can get a laugh, but I was legit shocked to find a foray of arcade machines that were fully playable!

Moments like those is where I see Phantom Fury has its heart in the right place. Although it only cranks the gameplay evolution of Ion Fury by just a tad, there’s more love placed in its environments and the enemies you come across. In fact, there are times when an entertaining moment will catch you off-guard, like when a bar filled with enemy soldiers is taken out by a plethora of mutants. (Alas, the saying “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” does not play into that situation!)

It’s when the game attempts to do something different where Slipgate Ironworks shines as a developer. I used to dread flying levels (especially in the Saints Row franchise), but the helicopter levels are not only well-balanced, but they’re also a lot of fun! I’ll admit that I wish we got a couple more levels like this in the game, as it added a new level of excitement that I wasn’t expecting. (Maybe the next incarnation can add to this.)

For the most part, my time with Phantom Fury was pretty good. There was enough action and mayhem to make the whole experience worthwhile. With that being said, stuff like weapons and combat could use a bit more uniqueness if the developers wish to keep this retro shooter looking fresh. Yes, I get that it’s weird to want something a bit modern in a throwback, but I reckon the tech exists to do so!

But for the love of all things chaotic, can I get a map or something so I can find my way easier?! I kept getting lost in what is essentially a linear game, and there was nary a way to figure out where I needed to go next. This was very apparent in the mines, where I found myself stuck in a spot for over half an hour before I finally figured out where I needed to go. (Patch this in, Slipgate, and you’ll rid yourselves of the game’s biggest headache!)


  • Great over-the-top action
  • Good sense of humor
  • Flying levels are surprisingly great


  • Gets somewhat repetitive
  • Combat lacks evolution
  • Needs maps


Phantom Fury is a step up from its predecessor. However, more love needed to be added to the combat as it did for the environment. When it attempts to do something different, Phantom Fury surprisingly succeeds; when it stays the same, half the time, you’ll be wondering when the same ole carnage will be over.


Promotional consideration provided by Brigitte Gautreaux of Stride PR. Reviewed on the PC va Steam.

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The J-POP king of America, Evan has been bringing the hottest sounds of the Land of the Rising Sun to the English-speaking public since his college radio days. He's also an expert in the gaming, anime, & manga realms, never afraid to get critical when the times call for it. Born & bred in Boston, he achieved his biggest dream yet by making the big move to Tokyo, Japan in Summer 2023! For personal inquiries, contact Evan at evan@b3crew.com. For press/band inquiries, write to us at thebastards@bostonbastardbrigade.com. (Drawing by AFLM of Wicked Anime)