The title of PixelJunk Shooter was a bit misleading. It was much more of an exploration and puzzle game than an actual shooter. It was a great game (along with its sequel), but not exactly what genre fans wanted. Sidecroller, however, is very much a straight-forward shmup and there is nothing wrong with that.
SideScroller is inspired by classic shmups that have come before it, while retaining the signature aesthetic and sound direction that has defined PixelJunk games. Although SideScroller started off as a genre experiment (see: PixelJunk Shooter 2’s bonus stage), it has developed into another stellar example of Q-Games stripping a genre down to its bare elements without losing any of the appeal.
PixelJunk SideScroller(PlayStation Network) Developer: Q-Games Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment To be released: TBA 2011
Konami’s late-80s shmup-sidecrollers (Salamander, Gradius) are the most pronounced influences on Q-Games’ latest, but if you dig deeper you may be surprised by what else you’ll find. The first comparison my mind made was one to Harmful Park. I’ve gushed about that game elsewhere on the site, so I won’t go into too much detail on its history. Like the weapon system in Harmful Park, SideScroller gives you unlimited access to four primary weapons which you level-up individually.
This is one of my favorite touches in Harmful Park since it opens the doors to strategic play. It also keeps you from feeling the frustration of accidentally touching the laser power-up and losing your current powered weapon -- Man, do I hate that! In SideScroller, you have lasers, a rapid-fire peashooter and bombs that shoot up and down. Just like Harmful Park, you switch between them with the triggers so you always have immediate access to them. Finally there is the charge attack: By holding down the back left-trigger for a couple seconds, you can send your ship spiraling toward enemies, destroying them, at hyperspeed (not sure if this can be powered-up).
When SideScroller was shown at E3 earlier this year, the art direction looked surprisingly lazy for the graphical masterminds at PixelJunk. The game was clearly an early-prototype, reusing Shooter 2’s assets. As you can see in these screens, the current build of SideScroller has much more of a Tron/neon-colored vector-graphics look which suits the game really well. Not only do the visuals pop, but the new look help keeps the bullets distinguished from the backdrops. When you are racing to drop some lava on the ground or are making your way through a narrow tunnel amidst gunfire, you’ll appreciate this new change.
The same chemical elements of Shooter are at play in SideScroller but it hardly feels like a puzzle. Though, the game finds ways to keep the player thinking and fighting strategically. You’ll frequently come across environmental hazards that can only be destroyed with certain weapons. The same is true of some enemies and bosses, so you’ll have to spread your power-ups across your arsenal if you want to get very far. Once you have played the game through and have the levels memorized, it probably won’t provide much of a challenge. But, it makes for some tense encounters on the first playthrough, especially during bosses when you scramble to find the right weapon.
Although I walked away from SideScroller feeling mostly glee, I have a couple reservations that I hope will be addressed before its release. For a PixelJunk game, the music seemed a bit buried in the mix; it wasn’t up front and thumping like it should have been, especially for this type of game. Also, the constant checkpoints diminished some of the challenge that the game is trying to capture. Gradius and Gradius II are insanely difficult so I wouldn’t expect something like that -- supposedly SideScroller was this hard during its early stages -- but constant checkpoints in a shmup just rub me the wrong way. I rather have lives that let me respawn, even if that isn’t how Gradius did it.
Along with Sine More and Jamestown, SideScroller is helping bring shmups back to the masses while giving it a new paintjob. As a fan of the genre, I see nothing wrong with that.
This blog submitted to our editor via our Community Blogs, and then it made it to the home page! You can follow community members and vote up their blogs - support each other so we can promote a more diverse and deep content mix on our home page.
[img]https://i.imgur.com/JIsNh43.png[/img]Amna Umen Anyone else getting massive lag in between games of the Battlefront Beta? I'm running an AMD rig so it might be that but just want to know it's not just me.Shinta 1 hour stream of Dragon Quest Heroes.
http://www.twitch.tv/gametrailers/v/20434097MeanderBot Plague Knight is pretty rad, even when represented by mediocre artists
[img]https://www.filepicker.io/api/file/kAV8fSgTP2iNGUivBEOu[/img]Shinta Initial impressions: Chibi-Robo Zip lash is pretty damn fun so far. It's like Mr. Mosquito + Castlevania + Umihara. Controls are spot on, platforming is actually very solid so far, and the characters are about as charming as they can get. +amiibo.nanashi Question: Is resident evil nemesis supposed to start off with a toolbox that has (unlimited) ink ribbon, 250 handgun ammo, magnum (w/ammo), shotgun (w/ammo) and two assault clips, in the first room of the game?????OverlordZetta [img]https://i.imgur.com/50Gj3X6l.jpg[/img] Much want. Such need. Ow.Shinta [img]http://i.imgur.com/RylEZlJ.jpg[/img]
Can you imagine if greedy aliens stole all YOUR snacks? I don't even know how I'd handle it honestly. I don't even want to think about it.Mike Martin Great. YouTube took down my nude re - enactment of She-Wolf. Again. Fuck you Shakira. Let my art shine. RadicalYoseph BREAKING: Inner city man and "Pokemon Go" enthusiast found dead after entering rival gang's territory. "All he wanted was a Shiny Charizard!" according to an interview with a close friend. "We found him on the street, limp as a Magikarp stuck on a beach."GoofierBrute I completely forgot that Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow had an animated opening. Other than the compression, it actually looks really good today, and makes me wonder why Konami didn't commission some sort of Castlevania anime. That would have been sweet.Cosmonstropolis Gamestop has Splatoon amiibo up, if that's your thing. Totally didn't order and just cancel mine. OverlordZetta Anyone else having issues with italics in blogs? I went to save a draft, and when it loaded the post-saving creature I was working on, the entire text had been italicized and I now am unable to change it back. I've been possessed!VIRGO So that's $50 for the season pass on top of the game already costing sixty at launch, plus the monthly subscription fee for playing online on consoles. All in the name of getting the full experience! VYDEO_GEAMEZ!!BroskiTheChocobo Why hello there. My name is Broski and I am new here so be nice. I'll be posting some content over the next few days so have a read and I hope you enjoy it. Broski out. Agent9 tired but I gotta work. Would rather play more MGS5.Batthink Races have been pretty intense, and the last Moto3 race in MotoGP 14 should have been too. Emphasis on the word [i]should[/i]. The AI riders ignored infringements in the last race, meaning everyone was disqualified except me. Derp.Batthink Been playing MotoGP 14 on my Vita. A bit buggy (some menus you need to press circle to go back, then cross to select to proceed, otherwise nothing happens. And motorcycling helmets riding motorcycles in-race), but I've got the sweet spot in difficulty.RadicalYoseph Daily VGM #21 (Witcher 1) - Geralt of Rivia (The Witcher 3)
I think this theme does a fantastic job capturing the feel of The Witcher 3. Epic, but also somber at times.wutangclam Sorry to shamelessly self-promote, but I wanted to share a piece that went up over the weekend with ya'll
Hopefully it's an enjoyable read!