You will battle through the seven final days that will determine earth’s fate and fight over futuristic metropolitan city’s as you take on the alien scourge in this joystick arcade shooter.
The game has a very original but plain feel, music and menus brings back memories of arcade games on actual arcade machines I used to play and these types of games where, and still are released on the Dreamcast to this day as it’s something I’m interested in, so the market is competitive. The games layout is also very original and plays original, with your tiny band of mini attack craft flying round your screen while large groups of random alien scum try scupper your fight for freedom.. ok, so yeah I like these games a lot and think arcade games are still important in developing original and unique ideas on a small-scale to visualise bigger ideas, but in reality it still has to offer a purpose and entertainment value, especially these days when money is still tight.
You have four different ships to choose from at the beginning and all have various unlock able looks and a bigger meaner looking model, normally named Type-B. Your ships are displayed in the Customise menu option, all eight different models are shown here but locked ships with be blacked out. The chart your ships are displayed in makes it easy to choose your desired vehicle as five different liveries can be unlocked for all of the eight ships and one will have to be selected for use, this also has an addictive quality as the vehicles look like tiny cool Thunderbird Esq toys with a 64 bit vibe. The four different styles of ships ( not counting the Type-B models ) have four different ammo types and these are shown underneath the floating model, they vary well from the Helicopters back and front flamethrowers, to the WW2 Fighter Planes machine gun spray fire (The Jet is slightly weaker than the rest as it has a very slow fire rate) Most vehicles are balanced well enough and have two upgradable attack levels in-game, you get three bombs that can also be triggered causing extreme damage to everything in a 360 degree radius, adding more action to the battlefield.
The aim of each level is to wipe out the larger alien creatures that have invaded earth within the time limit, these appear on your radar at the bottom left of your screen in red and the other secondary enemies appear in green on your radar, the view-point you have does make it a little hard to find enemies so using your radar to save vital time is necessary but easy. You have a shield which is the green bar at the bottom of the screen, you can refill this by killing enemies and picking up the green crystals they drop, helping you not to die so much. Controls are simple and effective, you fire with the Right Analogue stick as you can fire in a 360 degree radius, bombs are deployed with RB button and Boost is used using the LB button, fighting can get hectic sometimes so the simpler control scheme helps you navigate through the chaos more effectively but does come at a price, it will become very painfully repetitive after a couple of hours, which I find is stupidly addictive but others may find too much or not interesting enough to hold their interest. I was pleasantly surprised at the enemies you fight as they do have some challenging attacks, like exploding pods firing tiny floating… creatures? Things maybe? I’m not sure but they were tricky, keep your eyes peeled as you progress as different units will be introduced to you ( Larger enemy ground units stay the same each stage )
The levels themselves are designed and polished off very well, very clear and detailed in places. The overall look of the maps adds so much arcade flavour to the fighting, adding more of a quality feel. The different city’s/stages you visit also have different looks, the enemies and units are different for each stage too helping to create that “next stage” feeling as some joystick shooters I’ve played can feel like one long level.
The levels do get much harder as you progress, normally giving you more of the larger enemies to kill before the times runs out, this gets more and more tricky as sometimes the game will just throw more of the smaller enemies at you, the smaller ones are normally the most dangerous annoyingly. These games are normally frustratingly hard but this title has four player co-op, making it a little bit more accessible to gamers who haven’t spent most of the early hours of the morning listening to repetitive music and playing the same level of PacMan over and over. It is online co-op only though and the connection to the host can be unstable at times unless you have a signal above three bars, which leads to lag if you don’t have a good connection, which inevitably causes death. There is also the Capture the Flag and Control Point multiplayer modes you can take part in, again the same problems arise with lag but there are some players online playing an arcade title for once. You can unlock liveries in most of the modes giving them all a reason to be played but there isn’t enough incentive to keep you playing other than collecting the ships, so the co-op mode is much-needed for this game to be enjoyable for long.
Though the game looks good and is, I guess, developed well with no problems or glitches it doesn’t exactly have much to offer apart from what I’ve already stated which is a run of the mill joystick shooter but with a few perks. After a couple of hours here and there it can become a bit of a chore to play, to me it’s something I will beat myself up with and enjoy for a while but I can see gamers getting rather bored with it and left feeling unchallenged. It’s 1200 MSP which is a big ask and though it is good, it’s not good for long enough to constitute 1200 MSP, for people who love this sort of thing it’s practically perfect but I think this formula of game needs tinkering with for the gamers of today.
Gamer Rating: 6.3
Developer: Gulti CO.LTD.
Publlisher: Square Enix.