review
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POSTED 15/11/16


XENORAID


10tons



We want a pew sensation (a pew sensation...)

OK, so Xenoraid, which depicts the apparent first ever space war that Earth faces (don’t worry, it’s in 2032, so there’s plenty of time left to party) may not be the second, third, fourth or whatever number with a ‘st’, ‘nd’ or ‘th’ appended best arcade shmup, but it gives respectable pew.

Much like a collision of irritatingly skittish Phoenix enemies, the rocky horror of Asteroids and most any game ever with a pay-to-upgrade system – with bonus random thrown in - Xenoraid tries to update the vertical scroller shmup and does some things really right.

For starters, up to four players can battle at once. Don’t have three friends? You can control four ships all alone. With varying attributes, each has advantages – but don’t get any wiped out or there’ll be three primed spaceships answering the call. Oops, there goes another one... Uh, there’ll be two primed spaceships...

Each has primary and secondary weapons. The first usually overheats at the worst times, so short burst firing (upwards or diagonally) is best, but even that doesn’t always save your puny spacesuit-clad arse – SWAP SHIPS! Secondary weapons are limited, but more can be picked up. As can space bucks, with which you can repair decimated ships, upgrade them or buy shiny new ones.

It starts off glacially slow, and despite attack patterns being randomly generated, it’s quite a snore-fest. But persevere and things get livelier – then a mega-boss will appear – eep!

But there isn’t much in the way of invading variety, and that aforementioned skittishness can really piss you off as you watch one of your valuable bullety things disappear into nothingness as the gremmie you targeted somehow managed to avoid at the last possible milisecond (but deftly sliced through you with one of its pew devices).

We’ve always got time for a new arcade shooter, and Xenoraid warrants time to appreciate its depth. But it’s hard to really love, baby love.

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.