hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Review: Neo XYX

4:00 PM on 04.09.2014 // Chris Carter

The Dreamcast never died

The shoot-'em-up genre will never perish, and neither will the Dreamcast. No matter how niche it can get at times, shooters old and new come out of the woodwork in the most unexpected of places, from Steam to legacy consoles.

One such release is Neo XYX, a new (yes, in 2014) game for the Sega's last console, making this the second Dreamcast release this year. It's also the best.

Neo XYX (Dreamcast)
Developer: NG.DEV.TEAM
Publisher: NG.DEV.TEAM
Released: February 17, 2014
MSRP: $49.99

Neo XYX may be a new game, but it brings things back down to the basics in a very old-school way. All you have at your disposal is a regular shot (that can be slightly modified for more power), screen-clearing bombs, and a button to hold to slow your movement -- that's literally it. There's no "slow-mo" power, no ability to switch to different types of crafts, it's just shoot-'em-ups, distilled. The only thing you really can do that's out of the ordinary is use bombs defensively to clear out bullets and avoid deaths. If you've played something like DoDonPachi before, you'll feel right at home.

But that doesn't mean XYX isn't a complex game. For starters, there's a score-attack element to it that centers around collecting medals for points in a "chain," as well as forcing you to grab bomb pieces to make more. If you want what little resources this shooter has to offer, you'll have to work for it. When I say it's "old school," I mean it, because if you lose all your continues you'll start all the way back at the beginning -- not the beginning of the stage -- the start of the whole shebang.

While I wouldn't necessarily call Neo XYX a "bullet hell shooter," it clearly has elements of the sub-genre, as every level has at least one or two enemy types (including bosses) peppered in. The AI is very aggressive, and the wide variety of foes make things incredibly interesting when they track you down across the screen and use multiple abilities to take you out. For instance, some screens have your typical ships that are straight shooters while others quickly dash in and set of delayed bombs that scatter droves of shots all over the screen.

It's very Cave-like in the sense that you'll have to adapt to multiple ways of thinking if you want to get through levels without losing tons of lives. All of this comes to a head with the bosses, which are both formidable and fun to fight. These big bads are massive in size, and all have something unique up their sleeves. Breaking off pieces of them as the fight goes on also adds to the tension, giving the confrontations a bit more weight.

Although Neo XYX is technically a vertical shooter, it does offer up optional modes of play, including multiple horizontal and vertical orientations. In fact, one vertical option even goes so far as to shift the screen sideways, so you can tilt your computer monitor to play up and down. Even as someone who prefers vertical danmaku I was impressed, and I heartily enjoyed embarking upon multiple playthroughs with each mode. The only hangup is the fact that there's only one standard difficulty, but thankfully it's balanced enough to the point where everyone should be satisfied.

I've always maintained that the best shmups are hand-drawn, and Neo XYX is no exception. The art is simply beautiful, as well as vibrant. It's easy to see where you are at all times, and it's equally as simple to distinguish enemy fire from your own. It also has a great heart-pumping soundtrack that's reminiscent of the PlayStation era, specifically the futuristic tunes of the Mega Man X series from X4 onward. It complements the game perfectly, as brief as it may be -- composer Rafael Dyll has another winner on his hands.

If you aren't already a fan of the genre, the pricey entry fee for Neo XYX probably isn't worth the trouble. But for everyone else, you'll have a blast with this challenging and well designed shooter with a surprising amount of options in tow for veterans. Like the Cave shooters of old, even if it doesn't truly innovate in any meaningful way, this is one game I'll be replaying for years to come.



Neo XYX - Reviewed by Chris Carter
Charming - Not perfect, but it's easy to ignore the rough spots when faced with so many engaging design decisions and entertaining moments. A memorable game that's hard not to like and recommend to others.

See more reviews or the Destructoid score guide.

Chris Carter, Reviews Director
 Follow Blog + disclosure DtoidChris Tips
Chris (Magnalon) has been enjoying Destructoid avidly since 2008. He finally decided to take the next step, make an account, and start blogging in January of 2009. Now, he's staff! -----------... more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

 Add your impressions

Status updates from C-bloggers

BaronVonSnakPak avatarBaronVonSnakPak
A client tipped me $50 today at a job site, which lead to me only spending $10 + tax for Dragon Quest Heroes. Slime time baby.
ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
Glory to The Many. The Many sings to us.
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Daily VGM #22 (Witcher 2) - Pam Pa Ram (The Witcher 3) [youtube][/youtube] Instant classic 10/10. It's a travesty it wasn't included in the soundtrack. Maybe CDPR is preparing for a special second disc release? I sure hope
Oh, look at that, the rough draft I choose not to delete of this paper I need to do! I can keep adding to that instead of starting over and getting frustrated and quitting. What a novel concept!
Jiraya avatarJiraya
Boys & Girls Whatcha doing ? Have you watched Shimoneta ? GO SEE IT [img][/img]
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
And speaking of Yo-Kai Watch, it sounds like the demo's out!
El Dango avatarEl Dango
Hello, Thomas. I see you're looking at our fine selection of quickposts. Do they please you?
OrochiLeona avatarOrochiLeona
Overwatch Beta livestreaming Thursday. All aboard the AWESOME train. CHOO! CHOO!
PSISomething avatarPSISomething
EXTREMELY SPOOPY TRAILER [youtube][/youtube]
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
I'm coming to realize my time off from blogging has made the progress I made at being succinct fade away into nothingness, as the world will see in about an hour. I also made Valkyrie Drive's boobs even more boring at Japanator last night! Somehow.
Apparently, Kero Blaster got an update... Neat.
Barry Kelly avatarBarry Kelly
[url=""]Deus Ex: Revision is now a thing that's on Steam for free [img][/img][/url]
Mike Martin avatarMike Martin
Wasteland 2 DC is out!
Torchman avatarTorchman
Just a reminder: If you game doesn't have a dancing murderer, or a dancing little girl, your not a GOTY contender.
Rudorlf avatarRudorlf
Season 2 of Fargo is out, and of course Fargo isn't Fargo without dumbass criminals, tragedy and black comedy mixed into one package. BTW, the Organic Mechanic is in this season.
PSISomething avatarPSISomething
Nintendo of America released a YouTube video promo for Fatal Frame 5. They used the 'word' "spoopy."
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Had the brilliant idea of watching the original Alien last night before bed. Totally didn't have crazy dreams afterward. Also, Bilbo Baggins was a total jerk in that movie. [img][/img]
gajknight avatargajknight
Sure Niero's all powerful, but does he have lips? Woah...
ShadeOfLight avatarShadeOfLight
Finished playing the fan localization for Ace Investigations 2. These guys did a fantastic job, despite this game having the single most convoluted plot in the entire series. Here's hoping that somehow, someday, Great Ace Attorney will get this treatment.
more quickposts


destructoid's previous coverage:

View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:

Please contact Crave Online, thanks!


Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -