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Instruments of Destruction Early Access Review

Instruments of Destruction is a physics-based destruction builder with slick presentation, an excellent soundtrack and outstanding UI. Who knew that manic, wanton destruction could be so relaxing? Perhaps it’s just the aspect of venting some frustration at the end of a long day/week, but there’s something about sending a 10-armed rocket-powered chainsaw crashing through a building that makes me laugh every time.

What’s more, it definitely seems like the developers have put attention to detail first and foremost, which can easily make or break a game like this. Models are blocky but not pixelated and have plenty of detail for the field of view that you’ll likely have most of the time (i.e., filled with dust and flying bits of debris). The particle systems are well designed and fine-tuned, and the physics simulation is excellent. Everything behaves exactly as you think it should, including weakened structures collapsing on their own and tossed objects causing even more chaos. All this and not a bug to speak of, and it’s only 375 MB, which means someone has been paying more attention to optimization than some triple-A studios do these days.

As for the game itself, the “main” mode has objectives to meet to unlock new locations and parts and (sometimes) build and budget limits. The architecture varies, and the objectives to unlock new things are not always “cause as much destruction as possible” (e.g., a common challenge has you destroy only buildings, and leave ancient ruins at least mostly intact). In other words, there is at least a modicum of strategy involved and if mindless chaos is what you’re after, there’s always sandbox mode. The vehicle editor is functional and has some interesting new additions like contraction/expansion of parts. My only issue is that you can’t test vehicles unless your vehicle matches all the current scenario’s requirements, for example, a vehicle requiring a certain weight can’t be tested at all until it meets that condition.

Overall, Instruments of Destruction is fun and absolutely beautiful, as it’s still in Early Access. we are looking forward to the upcoming content updates to the game.

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