Now here’s an awesome game that *no one* appears to be talking about. Reminding me a bit of “Assault Heroes”, and even more of “Madballs in Babo: Invasion”, we have an adventure game in “Quick Pirate” that surprised me at every turn.
It seems to have absolutely nothing to do with sailing the seven seas. Secondly, it seems to eschew pirate tropes at every turn. What you have instead is a top-down adventure game which is part shooter, part exploration game, and part collect-’em-up.
Yes it’s dual-stick controls, but like “Assault Heroes” it does something wildly different with it. But unlike A.H., which had no collecting, here your goal is to repeatedly venture out into the level looking for gems, and bringing them back to your start location. So you’ll keep gradually delving further into the level, gradually learning more of it.
There’s a loooooong upgrade tree here, for weapons and other abilities, rewarding players who experiment. For example, is it better to upgrade your weapons and kill every enemy with them, or is it better to upgrade speed and fuel and race through each level avoiding enemies? The game lets you play it either way, with you upgrading as appropriate.
At first glance, the game restricts you to given corridors… and then you discover you have flight! For those who ever wished they could just hop over an obstacle in a maze, this is your game. It’s not without consequences to your fuel, but you actually can fly your… pirate gyro copter, I guess?… over the corridor barriers in this game, and that’s incredibly satisfying.
The soundtrack is crazy, as far from peg-legged pirates as you can get, with techno beats that are catchy and fun. Controls are tight, too, and the presentation quite attractive. This is the epitome of a hidden gem, and costs you merely what 80 Microsoft Points used to ($1, etc.).
Here’s what the developer (Smith Layouts) has to say about the game:
“Pilot your ship across a variety of locations to collect gems. Fight enemies and collect gold along the way to upgrade your ship and guns.”
Thanks to “Indie for Breakfast” for making me aware of this game, and I strongly recommend watching his hilarious review as he learns the game without reading the instructions, and riffs on the crazy music. I think his might be the most entertaining indie review I’ve ever watched.