review
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POSTED 14/2/14


TxK

Llamasoft



We’re too old for this shit.

Through myriad shooters, puzzlers, adventures and every other genre you can drag from a categorisation machine, no game has ever made us feel past it. Until now. Yeah, cheers then Jeff Minter.

If the name isn’t familiar, that classic ’80s movie quote back there was kind of apt, as he hit the game scene early in that decade, renowned for a proclivity for hooved animals as well as pumping out an array of wondrously out-there arcade experiences involving everything from mutant camels and space sheep to lawnmowers. But perhaps his biggest success was Tempest 2000 for Atari’s stillborn Jaguar in the ’90s. TxK is an evolution of that.

In turn, they’re both evolutions of a classic vector-drawn (that’s direct point-to-point lines, not pixels) arcade shmup Tempest from the early days of coin gobblers. Between Minter’s skill and the Vita’s scrummylicious OLED screen, TxK is a neongasmic feast for the eyes – and manna for those who market blood pressure medication.

In keeping with its classic arcade heritage, TxK is an utter – erm, is very challenging. You’re represented by golden space horns, dash-crabbing your way left and right on various vector-based objects which, ladies and gentlemen, are floating in space. Greeblies of assorted lethality try to climb your wireframe, so you try to shoot them down. Simple, right? Well, in theory.

A few levels into the 100 on offer things become more frenetic, as pace amps with more and more invaders invading, the awesome ambientechno soundtrack doofing away and levels wiggling about like lager-fuelled Mexican waves. Urgh.

With various modes to tackle, bonus interludes, power-ups aplenty and bangin’ catchphrases that’d have Dr Alex Patterson blissing along agreeably, TxK is an ace assault on the senses. Just don’t expect it to be easy.

Still, if you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything...

take me back to the start...

 



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ALL WRITTEN CONTENT COPYRIGHT © AMY FLOWER 2008-2017. GAME IMAGES COURTESY OF RESPECTIVE GAMES COMPANIES.