Day 108: REVOLVER360

Posted: 2011/02/25 in Indie Games

I’m purchasing an Xbox Live Indie Game every day, seeking out the quality titles that got lost in the shuffle and no longer appear in the top 50 downloads. Today is day #108, and today’s game is “REVOLVER360”.

From the developer:

“A horizontal scrolling & revolving shooter.Revolve and dodge the bullet hell!!2 game mode,trophy system,and global scoreboards.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself. This game brings an interesting three-dimensionality to horizontally scrolling shooters, which are normally a very two-dimensional affair. Rather than adding a 3D look, this game innovates by bringing in 3D gameplay through a revolving technique that has you rotating your craft (which appears to the player as the viewpoint revolving around the ship) to either dodge incoming shots, or to line up your own shots. No mere graphical gimmick, it’s critical to surviving the game that you do so, given the number of shots being fired at you. And don’t think the rotating element makes the game cheap, or even easy: more than once you will likely forgetfully rotate back *into* shots you had originally dodged, as you dodge yet more enemies and shots on the other three planes the game simultaneously takes place on.

The game is tremendously gorgeous, with very smooth and fast animation and I have yet to ever notice any slowdown despite it reportedly all being rendered in 1080p. Detailed backgrounds whiz by so quickly it’s hard to appreciate them, and environments and enemies look good from any perspective.

One of the more unusual options is to shrink the game down and play in a form of single-player split screen. I found it unplayable, but I won’t criticise the game for providing me an option, and some might benefit from it. Either way, it’s an interesting and unique idea.

Global leaderboards add replay incentive, and two game modes and both short-range and long-range weapons add to the variety. There are several other unlockables and power-ups that you will discover as you progress through it. Shooter fans can’t go wrong picking this one up for 240 Microsoft Points.

For a second opinion, check out Kobun’s review of REVOLVER360.

Finally, here’s a video XBL Indie Game developer Matthew Doucette (the person behind the excellent “Score Rush” that I reviewed way back on Day 38, and also Decimation X that I haven’t played yet but it on my to-do list) playing REVOLVER360. Matthew shows up what the game’s like when played by a skilled player at a high level.

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