Heaven Dust wants to be Resident Evil for kids, but instead, it’s more Resident Evil for fans of anything except Resident Evil. It’s slow, poorly paced, boring, and it has the most annoying inventory management in any game I’ve ever played.
The game takes place in a mansion and everybody has turned into a zombie, except for you. You’re the last man alive and you need to escape, but it’s not as simple as walking up to the front door and waiting outside for an Uber to take you home. That would be too easy and it’d be over in five minutes. I kind of wish that was an option, though.
You have to solve puzzles to unlock different areas of the mansion. You’ll have to read the notes and journals littered throughout the game to gather clues, as well as collect items to use for puzzles. This sounds simple enough but the inventory system makes it an absolute chore to play. You can only carry a handful of items at any given time, so you’ll have to use the storage boxes to stash your stuff. This means storing key items in a box, and then getting to a puzzle, finding you need the key item you’ve left behind, and then going back to get it. Then, once you’ve finished the puzzle, storing the item back in a box to make room for other key items you’ll pick up along the way, and then finding you actually still need that key item, so it’s another slow mooch back to the box. This annoyed me to no end.
The puzzles are by-the-by and not all that complex. With a couple of minutes of thinking time, you’ll figure them out. You’ll spend more time running back and forth (at a snail’s pace, mind you) to collect the items you need to solve the puzzles. This isn’t how puzzle games should work.
And of course, there are zombies all over the place. They don’t really pose any threat, so long as you’ve got ammo for your pistol – your only weapon – then you’re good. You just need to keep your distance, pull up your pistol with RB, and then fire at the zombies. You can’t miss, either, as the game automatically targets enemies, which takes any challenge out of encounters. In fact, if you do find yourself in a pinch, you can just leave a room and the zombies will forget all about you – because doors are zombies true weakness.
Heaven Dust looks and feels like a mobile game. It’s not technically impressive, at least not here in 2021, but maybe it would have been if it was on a Nintendo 3DS. It’s not great to look at, it’s boring to play, and I did not get to the end. After a chance encounter with a zombie that sprung out of nowhere, I was killed. I lost a lot of progress, which meant I would have had to run around the damn place collecting bits and bobs to solve puzzles again. No thank you.
Heaven Dust wants to be Resident Evil’s cute cousin with its chunky characters and low-violence gameplay. Instead, it’s just a bore and a chore, and they are two things no game should ever be. Avoid this one like the modern plague.
Heaven Dust Xbox Review
Overall - Bad - 4/10
Heaven Dust is a poor man’s Resident Evil that has very few redeeming qualities. The music is good, but this is a game, not an album.
- Graphics are OK
- Music is actually quite good and fits really well
- Boring and lacking any kind of tension
- Very easy to the point that there’s no challenge
- Lots of annoying backtracking
- Awful inventory system
Review Disclaimer: This review was carried out using a copy of the game provided by the publisher. For more information, please read our Review Policy.
Primary version tested: Xbox One. Reviewed using: Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S.