Dealing with the baddies – Door Kickers: Action Squad

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Door Kickers: Action Squad is a 2d shooter game. It was published in September 2018 by the independant romanian gamedev studio KillHouse Games. In this review we will show you if the game is still worth buying in 2023.

So far me and my friends have played the first two chapters (out of 6) in the classic mode on local multiplayer. As we played with different input hardware we noticed that the controller settings feel more intuitive than the keyboard settings especially if you’re used to using the mouse to control the direction of a movement. Keep in mind that these can be changed.

KillHouse Games have made similar titles before and after the release of this game but Door Kickers Action Squad is their only game where you are looking at the environment from a side sectional view. The game can be purchased both on mobile and on steam and also on multiple consoles. The price is quite different for the platforms but the gameplay is similar, the mobile versions are just lacking some content at this date.

Pixel Paradise – Game appearance

beautiful pixel sunset

As I generally enjoy pixely graphics Door Kickers: Action Squad was a nice addition to other pixel art games like Knights of Pen and Paper 2 or Minecraft. The artwork is really detailed and the map design is pretty diverse with areas outside, indoors and even some underground levels. The game plays around with lighting, having some rooms illuminated while others remain dark hiding their sometimes dangerous inhabitants.

There is some nice background music, cool sound-effects for the weapons and also alerts for gameover / mission succeeded screens. The sound-design feels retro and matches the general feel and aesthetic of the game.

Lots of groaning later – Gameplay

The basic idea of the classic game mode is to kill all the bad guys and free all the hostages or complete another set goal. You are playing either solo or as a team of two special force operators either with local or online multiplayer. The less hostages you accidentally kill or the faster you complete the mission the more stars a rewarded (up to 3). Stars are a currency which can be used to acquire new weapons and other gear for your characters and is shared between them.

Killing enemies rewards you with points in an ability bar. These points can be used to purchase for example: more live points, med kits and your ultimate ability.

defusing the bomb next to a “teleport-door”

The levels are constructed out of rooms with often locked doors that need to be pushed open. In these sometimes dark rooms you can find enemies, hostages or just nothing. There are also doors that can only be accessed with two players (if you’re playing with two players) and doors that “teleport” you to the next floor. Multiple levels also include doors that can only be opened by acquiring a matching keycard somewhere else in the level. There are also outside areas which sometimes hide easter eggs that can be collected.

character selection

You choose how you want to play through the levels by selecting one of the six character that come with different gear and require different playstyles. Some of the are offensive based, while other focus on defensive measures. You can equip one primary weapon for each character, two other items like grenades or more armor and one ultimate ability that can be used when you have earned a certain amount of points.

Fighting zombies and endless waves – Other gamemodes

at the edge of death inside the endless tower

There are two other gamemode in the game: An endless mode where you can fight through the floors of an endless tower. Here you’re just getting points towards your ability bar by freeing hostages found around the different floors. I found myself struggling here as I wasn’t able to access the med pack very often throughout my runs. I played this mode only in single player so far but I can imagine this to be great fun with a friend and a planned strategy.

defeating a zombie invasion

The third gamemode is basicly a zombie invaded version of the classic mode. You need to defeat all regular enemies, free the hostages and kill the zombies which appear out a green portal. There are some tougher zombies that were quite hard to kill but all in all an interesting experience.

Difficulty-wise I feel like it’s easier to play the classic mode in single player as you don’t have to figure out which one is your character when acting hectically and you don’t need to spend points reviving your teammate. In general the game has a steep learning curve meaning if you understand how to play it effectively you can use that strategy to clear nearly every room you enter.

Getting those stars – Grind

Most of the levels are easy to complete with 3 stars especially if you’ve run it a couple times. Some of the time-objective levels were harder to complete with 3 stars.

If you loose track of your character or miss an exploding barrel it can lead to a quick death for your character. This happens especially while playing with friends. Starting out we found ourselfs dying to melee enemies a lot as the movement was a bit different to what we are used to. After all this is a rather fast paced game and a good reaction time can really help you out.

There are lots of guns, gear and skills to unlock while playing and you will have to spend some time grinding through the levels to unlock them all. The game has 51 steam achievements at the moment and also 5 collectible cards for a steam badge. There are also 20 ingame secret donut-collectibles.


Door Kickers: Action Squad: If you like pixel graphics and enjoy a simple shooter this is the game for you. Although there is some coordination needed this game can be well enjoyed with friends. There are lots of content to complete and the game is definitely worth picking up if it's on sale. Another great thing is the relatively small amount of time needed to complete a level so it's perfect if you don't have much time to game. GLPC: emk

von 10

EDIT (11.06.2023): I have completed all achievements and got 3 stars in all stages available in the base game. The points I made in the review are still the same but I want to add that if you want to get all 51 steam achievements you need to bring time and patience. One level took me around an hour to complete because I needed to learn enemy spawn and strategies to safe all hostages.

Get Door Kickers: Action Squad here

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