(Apologies for the funky crop–someday when I decide to do my own CSS, I’ll make youtube videos fit.)
Recently, Tayler and I have been playing Shooter, a fun little video game from Q-games. I’ve really enjoyed the PixelJunk style in general–the games have very simple aesthetics, controls, and gameplay. The objective of Shooter is to rescue a bunch of scientists and miners stranded amidst the hazards of a deep inner-planet mine. The gameplay reminds me a little bit of Solar Jetman. You can have one or two players. Players must ward off alien monsters and navigate the dangerous mines with care. However, it isn’t just as simple as finding the workers and picking them up–some tricky placement of lava, flammable gases, rocks, and permafrost make the player’s task a chewy treat for the brain. A poorly aimed missile or a misplaced stream of lava can mean a sad fate for a little scientist.
- The controls are very simple: L-analog to move, R-analog for facing, L1/L2 to grapple, R1/R2 to shoot. It makes the game really easy to pick up.
- Local 2-player is especially fun, as players can get things done faster, but they can also thwart each other in good fun while racing greedily after diamonds and people.
- As you can see by my poorly-edited youtube video, the game allows easy video capture. I like that more games are including this, I think it shows that they’re paying attention to the player culture. I want to see even more of this–though I do understand that it could be tough with rights issues. Note that in my video, the music is mostly absent. Which brings me to the next thought.
- Like in other PixelJunk games, the music is simple electronic happiness. Better still, the sound effects are musical, and they blend into the music in a unique way. This is another cool trend I’ve seen in games lately–especially in small games like this.
Tayler and I have really enjoyed playing it. It feels like it brings ideas that were good in 8-bit to today’s tech, and it builds upon them.