PINEAPPLE! Today, I bought Assualt Android Cactus during the Steam Lunar New Year Sale and I could not be more pleased with the game. I’ve got a rule about games, if its not 25% off it’s not really on sale. I normally only purchase games that are 50% off or more just because I can wait for it to drop. With a 97% positive reviews on Steam out of over 600 reviews, I decided to give it a shot.
I’m a big fan of bullet hell games, more specifically the top down twin stick shooter variety. I think bullet hell helps in sharpening observational skills that can be used in every game genre. I’ve enjoyed games ranging from Galaga, R-Type, Gradius, Life Force, Beat Hazard, Geometry Wars, and many others that my old brain has forgotten.
Thus far I’ve had problem with understanding one mechanic. Battery. I was dying from battery loss on the first boss and it was becoming frustrating. But after some digging, I stumbled across a Dev post on the Steam Forums.
“Our goal is to encourage aggressive & rash game-play in order for you to succeed, and as the game gets harder you have to keep pushing more towards that fine line between danger & death. If you’re grabbing all the batteries and still running out it’s a good indicator that you are playing too conservatively – Start taking some risks!”
After reading that, I started hitting left trigger to dodge and shoot the alternate weapon that seems to pack a pretty healthy punch from Lemon and Starch. Each character has their own flare and play-style. Lemon has a 3 bullet spray with a direct target rocket launcher. While Starch has a single target laser as her primary weapon with a micro missile alternative that will seek out any target in the direction you are pointing. Thus far in the game with each boss you defeat you unlock a new “android” character.
In addition to the top down twin stick action that comes with default, you can unlock with earned game experience a FPS mode. This reminds me of Alien Swarm where the game can play both ways( FPS mode was with a mod IIRC), but even though I’m an FPS gamer at heart, the FPS mode doesn’t do it for me. You can see a sample of a Boss Rush Mode (nothing but bosses) to get a feel for the FPS style.
The one con that I’ve had thus far with the game is that I wish there was more voice-over work. I enjoy the typed dialog from the bosses and the characters and I think it would have been a great addition to have voice overs for that. I’d even be interested in that as a DLC or Game-of-the-Year Edition (not that this is a game of the year game, but an edition of the game that has all the things included you could want to enjoy the experience of the game. GiantBomb.com on this topic).
Wrapping up if you like bullet hell or twin stick shooters this looks like it will be worth picking up for a few hours of fun. I’ve yet to play multiplayer and will update once I have the chance.