Hush little baby don’t say a word, and never mind that noise you heard, it’s just the gun held in my hand, see that monster, shoot them, bang! Sleep Tight is not the Enter Sandman game we are have all been waiting for, but it damn well could have been. After all what is more metal than shooting monsters using a dart gun and defending your home against the oncoming hordes by building up a wall of artillery that would make America blush?
You are one of several children who inexplicably inhabit the same incredibly tidy room and have to defend themselves at night lest they get eaten alive. At least that seems to be what’s happening. You have two ways to defeat the monsters that encroach on your bedroom at night: a gun that you yourself wield in a twin stick style, and a very basic array of turrets that are simply light, medium, or heavy. If you were looking for something more complex then you quite simply won’t find it here.
Building your defences also has you placing walls to your pillow fort, which also come in light, medium and heavy varieties. As a result the only tactical decisions you really have to make are where to lay your defences and which order to upgrade things in.
Due to the ammo consumption of the normal weapons you will probably find the turrets to be a more economical choice, plus you can lay down an awful lot of them and they will do a perfectly find job of defending you until around the 40th wave, at which point the monsters suddenly stop spawning anywhere logical and instead spawn on your turrets and decimating them entirely.
The spawning is one of the most predictable thing up until this point, meaning you can simply make your base just below the rug in the bedroom and can pretty much guarantee that all of the enemies will be coming from the top of the screen. The game becomes less about skill at this point and much more about making sure you remember to spend your currency in the daylight between rounds to upgrade and repair your turrets and turrets.
While each character has their own strengths and weaknesses, the mechanics of the game are the same and as such the same kind of tactics work across the board. Without a variety of different turrets and a meaningful change in enemy types there is simply not enough variation to keep you truly engaged. Tower defence games have come a long way since their inception and while the mash up of styles is a nice idea, without depth it just feels to superfluous to be relevant.
Sleep Tight has some very interesting ideas, but unfortunately fails to captilise on them and falls into the depths of mediocrity. The stand out aspect of it is the economy and the ability to change the two currencies for each other, but without meaningful options around this it just feels hollow. Add to this enemy AI that lacks nuance and simply rushes at you, the ability to predict what will happen is simply too much. The nice visuals and entertaining character tropes are not enough to carry the dull gameplay into anything greater than the sum of its parts. Sleep Tight just leaves you wanting a nap.
Version tested: Nintendo Switch – Also available for PC