Day 745: Every Other Shooter

Posted: 2012/11/23 in Indie Games

Some reviewers said the movie “Superman Returns” was a love letter to the original Christopher Reeve Superman movies. Essentially an unofficial alternative sequel to the original Reeve-starring Superman film (for those who weren’t fans of Superman 2), it in fact contained elements of both films plus new elements. That’s a bit how I see “Every Other Shooter”, an unofficial sequel to Robotron 2084 that incorporates elements of both Robotron 2084 and the sequel it never had (to the best of my knowledge) plus new elements.

Taking place in the year 2085 (one year after Robotron, which suggests the author is also looking at it as an unofficial sequel) and you’re no longer trying to protect the last human family. The game is a twin-stick shooter, a game that perhaps existed before Robotron but was definitely popularised by the game. The last humans appear to all be dead one year later, but you were one of their robotic protectors and (despite your failed mission) continue to attack the machines that killed them. That introduces one of the first gameplay changes; you’re on the offence almost exclusively, there’s not much worrying about friendly fire or collateral damage here.

The next big change is boss encounters, which pepper the levels with bigger challenges. These are a welcome feature for me, as they punctuate the levels making it feel less like an endless survival mode and more like something you’re making some actual progress through (in contrast, when playing Robotron there was little to mark the end of one level, or the beginning of the next). Once you beat all 30 levels, there is an endless survival mode for the high score purists.

And one of the bosses sent out big asterisk-like blasts that you could shoot down, which brought me back to the ’80s and the original arcade Star Wars game, which made me happy. There are now keys to collect and power-ups to snag (including some seat-of-your-pants, manually activated shields), which further mix up the gameplay. All of that together is definitely worth 80 Microsoft Points to me.

Here’s what the developer (Cannibal Cat Software) has to say about the game:

“In the year 2085, humankind has been eliminated from Earth and mutant robot death squads rule with an iron fist. You are the resistance, a robotic freedom fighter who broke away and has gained access into their heavily guarded network complex in order to eliminate them once and for all! 30 levels of complete mayhem and tension including 6 challenging boss stages!”

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Comments
  1. David Loves Sandy says:

    And in a lot of ways more challenging then Robotron! Thanks to the review I revisited this game and the nostalgia feels is great. I happen to own Robotron from when it was available on XBLA (it’s not anymore) and this game is a great unofficial sequel.

    • And the best part is that it feels like the sequel Robotron never had, but ought to have. That’s what makes this game so perfect, you ask me. It feel simultaneously faithful to the original, yet different than the original. That’s a hard balance to get right, but this game does.

  2. Rich Walter says:

    Thanks for the kind words! I actually have an update to this game I need to post up… some bug fixes and a slowdown fix, as well as some new features. Watch for it soon!

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