Day 472: Nucleon

Posted: 2012/02/25 in Indie Games

“Nucleon” uses that same old tired practice we’ve seen in so many games: putting you inside an atom defending the nucleus from waves of radiation particles using energy strikes. Wait… what?

OK, so the premise is entirely original. How about the gameplay? It’s surprising to me that we haven’t seen more like this, but I can’t off the top of my head think of any dual-stick shooters that have you defending much of anything aside from your ship, which has the advantage of being mobile. The simple fact of having to defend something mixes things up surprisingly thoroughly. Combat has you firing energy that jumps from one enemy to another, imbuing strategy and timing as you’ll want to take out as many opponents as possible with each shot. Chaining the energy not only takes out more of them, but increases the ability of the nucleus to resist the bad guys. An 80 Microsoft Point games that fills a whole I hadn’t realised needed filling, and worthy every MSP.

Here’s what the developer (Craig Brown) has to say about the game:

“You are the Electron, guardian of the atomic nucleus. Destroy incoming radiation particles before they hit the Proton at the center of the atom. Use your Electron powers to transform into an electric bolt, arcing to nearby radiation. The Neutrons will shield the all-important Proton too, but once they are destroyed, you’re the only defense. Destroy the radiation. Defend Nucleon!”

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