Japan's take on classic Commodore 64/Amiga action-adventure games. NOT a Metroidvania. Use your wits and your weapons to discover an ancient secret and gain your redemption. Art and music by Japanese legends of console gaming.
User reviews:
Overall:
Mostly Positive (32 reviews) - 71% of the 32 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Aug 31, 2015

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About This Game

Exile's End is an homage to early 90's action-adventure PC games like Flashback and Another World, but with a Japanese flair. The core of the game is from Australian game maker Magnetic Realms with art, cutscenes, and music provided by legends of the 8 and 16-bit eras from Japan. It draws its thematic influence from the science-fiction films and anime of the 80's and its gameplay from classic Amiga and Commodore 64 action-adventures.

  • Music From Keiji Yamagishi (Ninja Gaiden NES, Tecmo Bowl, Captain Tsubasa)
  • Art by staff from Secret of Mana,First Kiss Story, Mother 3, and more!
  • NES-style cutscenes by OPUS (Half-Minute Hero)

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Win XP SP2 64-bit Professional
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo, 3.00 GHz or equivalent
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 8800GTS 256 MB RAM or equivalent
    • Storage: 300 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Requires OpenGL support
    Recommended:
    • OS: Win 7 32-bit Home Basic
    • Processor: Intel Core i5-2300, 2.80 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce GTX 280 1 GB RAM or equivalent
    • Storage: 500 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Requires OpenGL support
    Minimum:
    • OS: 10.5 Leopard
    • Processor: Intel
    Minimum:
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04LTS or later equivalent
    • Graphics: OpenGL drivers required
    • Storage: 50 MB available space
Customer reviews
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Overall:
Mostly Positive (32 reviews)
Recently Posted
sunbro2389 \[T]/
( 6.6 hrs on record )
Posted: July 6
I picked it up on a whim in the summer sale and boy I'm glad I did. This is a nice hidden gem for Metroid and Flashback fans. Stood up all night and beat it and almost 100%'d it. Starts out slow but opens up very nicely, catchy soundtrack too.
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Ron
( 8.5 hrs on record )
Posted: July 5
Despite the fact that the second sentence in the game's official description on Steam declares it to be emphatically "NOT a Metroidvania," I can assure you, gentle reader, that it is. Or at least, it pushes enough of those buttons to qualify as such in my book. I view that as a plus, counting Symphony of the NIght and Super Metroid among my all-time favourite games, period, let alone in this genre.

I can see where the developers may be coming from, though. It incorporates elements of other games/genres, notably Flashback, Out Of This World, and the C64/Amiga aesthetic, blending it into at most, a gritty subgenre of Metroidvania. I'm not sure why they wanted to distance themselves from that label, but it's not helpful to generate confusion amongst potential buyers.

On to the game itself. It's short. That's not necessarily bad, but it's something that needs stating. What it lacks in length, it makes up for in flavour and feel. The mood is just right, aided by the backgrounds and soundtrack. The game also features cut scenes that are very much in the style of the NES NInja Gaiden series. There's mostly still images and basic dialog, that serve to tell a story with a lot more implied background than what is covered in game; lends the impression that the setting is more fleshed out than it probably is (a plus, I'd say).

It also has, what I'd call "genre expectations" that lie squarely between that of Flashback and Metroid - you start out completely unarmed and un-powered, in a hostile environment where even a fall from sufficient height can damage or kill you very easily. Health ups are few and far between (at first), and your first foes will be killed literally by throwing found rocks at them. Along the way, it transitions somewhat, so that by end-game, it feels like the early part of most Metroid games. You've got your double-jump, a couple guns, all but one with limited ammo. There are no crazy shinesparking abilities, wall jumps, or anything like that.

As to the shortness - it's metroidvanian in that you need to do a little backtracking, but you don't need to do a lot of it. More if you want to find all the secrets, but there aren't a ton of those to be had, but finding them without using a map may take some time. All are visible though, so it may involve a bit of "pixel hunting" to discover them all.

I'd give this game a recommendation based on the fact that I liked all of its main inspirations, and it resulted in a "just right" experience that meets in the middle of all of them, but it's something I"d certainly want to wait for a sale. It's good, but it's no Axiom Verge.
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StudioMaslar
( 8.1 hrs on record )
Posted: March 18
Really great game with old school aesthetic. Once you get rolling and have some gear under your belt you start to feel like a bad ♥♥♥.

The music is really cool and the game is pretty addictive and fun to play!
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Dog
( 2.7 hrs on record )
Posted: January 31
Yes, I recommend this game.
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Contains: Pine Nuts
( 6.9 hrs on record )
Posted: January 24
First, let me say that I BARELY recommend this game.

A quick breakdown:

Gameplay: 4/10
Controls: 8/10
Music: 10/10
SFX: 8/10
Story/writing: 6/10
Graphics: 9/10

Overall: 7/10

This game is designed to look like an old-school NES or C64 game. If you grew up on games like this then this game is really satisfying at first.

Due to that, I enjoyed going through it once. I am not sure if a person without said experience would. It essentially has NO replay value in my mind. The level design is horribly boring and the gameplay is not very challenging.

Overall, I give it a recommend because the look and sound of it is so beautiful and it was intriguing enough that I played it all the way through.
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Kripthmaul
( 3.0 hrs on record )
Posted: January 11
This is an okay game if you're looking for some retro metroidvania game....But it has one major flaw that no one can overlook. IT HAS NO F*****G QUEST INDICATOR. So you spend 5/7 of playtime just going to and fro every corner of the map searching how to use the last item you got..... It really frustrating.

Furthermore, I happen to have skipped the cutescene were they tell you what you'Re doing in the game, so now, I have not a single clue.
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Indy
( 4.7 hrs on record )
Posted: January 2
fun 'nuff
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Forecast Octopus
( 3.4 hrs on record )
Posted: December 31, 2015
Basic metroidvania. If all you need is a quick fix of metroidvania, this isn't terrible, but it's very barebones in the end.

Exploration is not much about using abilities and exploring as much as throwing grenades at everything.

It's not bad, just... lackluster.
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Kookies!
( 6.2 hrs on record )
Posted: December 15, 2015
Feels like a nice fusion of Another World and Super Metroid. Decent soundtrack and 16bit graphics/cutscenes. If you are into that type of thing, check it out!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Mickey the Dole Scum
( 23.6 hrs on record )
Posted: November 27, 2015
A pretty cool mix of Flashback with heavy leanings towards Metroid best describe the feel of this game. The music score is quite simply phenomenal. Composed by Keiji Yamagishi himself, of "Ninja Gaiden" fame. The Royal Bath melody in particular I never grow tired of hearing. Enough can't be said about having really good background music to set the mood and accompany you while traversing around the depths of the planet.

Most would agree that controls are very important in a game like this. Thankfully you'll come to find the controls are very solid, tight, and responsive. Far to many indie games drop the ball when it comes to controls, but Exile's End certainly got it oh so right.

The plot itself is rather typical sci-fi fair with some interesting undertones. A lone survivor of a spaceship wreck, finds himself stranded on an alien planet. You'll find yourself surrounded by a hostile environment, trying to figure your escape, while unraveling this foreign worlds mysteries without giving away to much.

Level design is very well done indeed. I really have to commend the developers when it comes to this particular area. So many little touches all come together to pull off a well crafted game. For example, generally when you're forced to back track (in order to use a key item you just discovered in a previous area) you're usually given a handy short cut nearby to use. Back tracking is kept to a minimum as much as possible. Unlike some of the lesser enjoyable games of this style; Exile's End doesn't make the mistake of purposely using backtracking as a tool to pad the game in order to make it seem longer. It also features a helpful mapping guide very much like Super Metroid's, which fills in new areas as you explore them.

The puzzles you encounter are fairly easy to solve. If not a little vague at times. Which encourages some old fashion problem solving skills. The solutions always make sense. It is nice that the game doesn't give you to many hints, or constantly try to hold your hand at every step of the way. In this way it stays true to it's retro roots.

Graphically it's very much up to par with some of the top SNES games of the golden era. The animated cut scenes look fantastic. Each of the area's has it's own unique look and theme which differentiates itself from the last in distinct ways. Keeping the game fresh each time you move into a new zone. Bosses, enemy monsters and other characters fit the unearthly forms that you would expect.

Difficulty is only moderate in normal story mode. The game allows for saves and also autosaves at the start of every screen you enter. This make it's pretty forgiving. Trying to find all of the items and secrets can be the most difficult part. I never found myself stuck for very long or felt any part of the game was unfair and overly frustrating. People looking for more a real challenge have Survival Mode avaliable.

Had this game been released on a 16 or 32-bit console of the day, I think the magazines of the time would have probably rated it atleast an overall 8.5 out of 10. It doesn't really do anything new, but what it does do well is bringing together elements from many classic games. Blending them into a different perspective with top quality gameplay.

Very high quality indie game that deserves a chance. If you've been searching for a game that can stand up to some of the best that 90's classic console gaming had to offer look no further than Exile's End!
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
18 of 19 people (95%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
12.7 hrs on record
Posted: September 3, 2015
I finished this in 4 hours, 27 minutes, but that is a bit deceptive. There was a major bug at release and I lost the first 6 hours or so of play and had to start over. I knew what to do then and repeated that 6 hours worth in like 2 hours. That 4:27 apparently doesn't count loading a saved game either (which I didn't have to do very often). Steam shows 12.7 hours total. I'm guessing it would take a new player about 6-8 hours.

The graphics, sound and music are all fine. Nothing sepectacular, but adequate and even fairly good for the most part.

The game has a few flaws, but I found it quite fun and worth the asking price.

My biggest problems with the game were:

1) The beginning area (forest) is not really very fun. You start with nothing and you take fall damage. It is very easy to die by stepping off the wrong ledge. They did add a way to look down (hold "down" for a few secs) so this part should be a little better now.

2) Most of the bosses are too easy. At least two of them have a "safe spot" where you can stand with almost no danger and kill them with your infinite ammo default handgun.

As to whether it's a a Metroidvania or not, I would say "yes". At first it feels a little more like "Out of This World", but as you progress and start finding power-ups and new weapons, it defintely starts feeling more like a Metroidvania.

When you die, you restart on the screen you are on, from an auto-save so your hp, ammo, etc. are all restored to when you first entered the screen. There are no checkpoints and you can save anywhere. When you re-enter a screen, all the enemies have respawned, making it easy to farm hp or ammo.

I wish there was a hard mode.

Edit: I also should point out that at the end of the game I got a message saying I had found only 46.7% of the items, so there was a lot more exploring and discovery that could have been done.
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39 of 57 people (68%) found this review helpful
Recommended
4.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 1, 2015
Pretty good game, solid controls.
unforgiving healh...

Reminds me of the older metroid games, definitly fun to play.
beginning is somewhat easy / boring but get's better.

nice music, and retro feel sound effects.
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11 of 11 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
6.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 13, 2015
Exile's End is essentially an upgraded / refined version of Inescapable.

Graphics, sounds and cutscenes have been overhauled, gameplay and leveldesign have been refined. In the end it is more or less the same game / experience as Inescapable.

Stranded on a remote planet, you quickly realize that something has gone very wrong and in order to survive you begin exploring. The game itself, just like Inescapable, seems mostly comparable to homecomputer-games that featured large, interconnected mazes with pretty basic combat - if you are thinking Shadow of the Beast or Flashback, you are not too far off. There is a bit of Metroid in here too, but the game's focus lies more in presenting the story and the nicely mythical atmosphere rather than secret rooms, item upgrades or complex movements to shortcut and sequence break sections.

Especially combat feels very "8-bit" and simplistic (jump and shoot) and a lot of the rooms are very basic and empty corridors - putting more emphasis on the whole "exploring old and forgotten ruins"-deal rather than being exciting and action-focused. The world is seemingly bigger than Inescapable (and if there ever was an item that allowed you to display a map, I never got it which made navigating a lot of the rooms that look quite samey somewhat irritating).

Especially towards the end when you have access to many different places but often times lack some sort of direction of where to go. Good luck finding that one corridor you need to go to when you are on an entirely wrong end of the map and do not even know what you are looking for. Inescapable was more compact and thus I never got as lost in it as in Exile's End which had me running in circles for a quite some time every now and then during my playthrough. Not explaining a lot of things didn't help either - remember that Powerbomb-moment in the glass tube in Super Metroid? Exile's End got quite a few of those - and these were tough not necessarily because I am dumb, but because the game isn't quite clear about the purpose of certain items nor does it really tell you that you are doing good / are on the right track. If you are into NES-style cryptic stuff, you might enjoy that - I am a bit on the fence here, the game doesn't have to exactly tell you things - but it could show stuff or inspire certain ideas through gameplay. Which it doesn't.

When you got the right idea and things work out, the game is really engaging though. The atmosphere in particular is noteworthy, thanks largely to great pixelart, well done but brief cutscenes (think Ninja Gaiden) and an amazing soundtrack and sounddesign. The music is great, managing to evoke both feelings of fear and wonder and so is the sound design. understated but strangely fitting the style and adding to the "isolation"-aspect the game got going.

If you adored Inescapable and wouldn't mind an expanded version of that game - there is no doubt that you will enjoy this game. And I do recommend Exile's End in general, but I would add that the game is not without flaws (mainly, lack of direction and no failsafes if the player gets stuck/lost - and perhaps lacking in the combat- and leveldesign-aspect if you are expecting something more 16-Bit or even modern day quality) and would mostly be for people enjoying strong atmosphere and a nice scifi-short story rather than stellar gameplay.
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11 of 12 people (92%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
10.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 2, 2015
This game is pretty fun and forces you to think outside of the box a few times. People are complaining because it doesn't play like Metroid or Castlevania, well boo hoo! The controls are really basic, only a few commands. It took me about ten minutes to figure out how to shift the screen by holding down, but I never played old computer classics before, so it made it a bit interesting. You get power-ups as you progress, just be sure to read the discription when you grab it, or you'll be scratching your head wondering what it was since it doesn't discribe the item again. The game is pretty short, took me about 3 1/2 hours to beat, but if your looking for something that is different or like 2d side scrollers, pick it up.
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10 of 12 people (83%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 16, 2015
Theme
Exile's End has fantastic environmental graphics for a 2D platformer, making me think of the old Flashback game. Unlike Flashback, however, the environment looks very empty and bland. It is a shame that such beautiful graphics are paired with such lackluster level design. The soundtrack is nothing special, and even becomes very repetitive and droning after a while. The story is very simple as well - the protagonist is part of a rescue mission right when something goes horribly wrong. With no way out, the only thing left to do is to go further in and find out what is going on. Storywise, there is no real drive to continue playing the game. It is not very exciting and it all seems rather predictable.

Gameplay
The controls of the game are great, which is the most important aspect of a 2D platformer. However, the mechanics and level design are outright mediocre. Due to getting falling damage at the beginning of the game, you are pushed to explore your environments carefully before advancing. However, moving the screen around to do this is terribly slow and takes away from the platforming. The environmental dangers such as floor and ceiling spikes feel terribly cheap as you just can't be bothered to wait for your screen to move up or down.

Enemy design is mostly lackluster. Each area usually has one or two enemy types that do little else but walk back and forth at the same pace. They feel out of place and offer no challenge what so ever, making them feel like filler content. The only exception is the first "tough" dog-like enemy you encounter, which sprints and jumps at you and requires a trick to escape from. The rest are just badly designed. Touching an enemy bumps you back a bit, but you get no invulnerability frames. Thus, if you are stuck in a corner or walking forward, you keep getting more and more damage.

The level design makes most screens feel like filler content (with monsters feeling like pointless bullet sponges), and often enemies spawn right in front of you when you transition from one screen to the next.

Exile's End allows you to save in any screen, but it's rather stingy when it comes to healing items. The only way to heal are from the limited number of health packs, and the rare pill drop from enemies. As a result, if you are low on health you'll find yourself grinding for such a pill drop. Fortunately, the game - outside of bosses - is not challenging at all. The majority of the damage you will get is from not being careful enough with the environment as you try to traverse filler content areas as fast as possible, desperately waiting for something exciting to happen.

Conclusion
The game would be great if enemies were more interactive and varied and the level design would do the graphical design justice. It's a real shame that the level design is so bad, because it is the one flaw making me not recommend this game. As it is, the game is bland and boring because of it.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
6.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 25, 2015
This game felt unfinished. It wasnt a bad game it just didnt feel complete.

Lets start with the story, There is little of it. A few cutscences and some message logs , The latter mainly hidden in secret areas which makes me wonder if we were supposed to know what was going on. The main character may as well have been a sack of used socks as he has no story or information. It mentions a dishonorable discharge at the beginning, But thats all you ever learn about him. The other character that helps you may as well be wearing the same sack, as even less info was given out about him. The end has you make a choice without telling you that it is one, I ran forward and got one of the endings on accident and was left wondering "Do I care?" I had formed no attachment to my alloted sack of socks which caused the end choice to be a pointless one.


Up next is combat. It takes a while to get your first actual weapon until you do you are stuck with rocks which i thought was funny, The weapons themselves were well designed except the grenade launcher which for some reason if you hit an enemy on the top of its sprite, It would do the same damage as a rock or less. The placed explosives which I found no use for other than blowing up a clay pot i had put on a plate I shouldnt have and the cloaking device which lasted about a second and did about as much as covering youself in a sheet and yelling "im not here! You cant see me!"

Enemies! Largely boring. There are two kinds walkers and flyers. The walkers tend to walk straight at you and fire their respective weapons (Gun/fireball) Except the spiders which alternate between floor and ceiling, The chargers which rush you and explode when killed and the stalkers which turn invisible. And flyers do just that, Fly. Didnt matter the sprite they all did the same thing. There is a unique enemy that runs quite fast, kills very fast and is attracted to sound but ultimatly nothing was done with it. Wasted potential as it would've been quite cool if it stalked you through the game, Kinda like a SA-X.

Bosses! Where there any? Only one truly felt like a boss, even had a cutscene beforehand but nothing happens when you win, he drops a weapon and leaves you to your own devices. The cutscene had him holding a bag standing in front of a giant crystaline figure. Okay, Whats in the back pack? Where did it go? Whats with the figure? When I won I worried that the game might have glitched because no acknowledgement was made at all that I had just defeated a boss. No acknowledgement was made of the back pack or the figure which the man was obsessed with. So yea, The boss fights were uninspiring.

Audio/Graphics! I play most games with music off so i cant really comment on that. The small parts of music i did hear sounded alright however. Graphics are probably the best thing about this game. I enjoyed them immensely, It felt like i had loaded this game through windows 3.1 with a backup floppy disk in case i didnt have enough memory. Good times.

Overall the game was boring, Its got a lot of space but its wasted and sparsely filled with anything of interest. There are two things however that I truly hated. The first was the map, I like to fill in my maps and in some rooms it seemed quite impossible as the missing pieces where high in the air or embedded in the walls. It was very annoying.

Second was the lack of any invincibility frames anywhere. If one of the walkers traps you in a corner you will keep taking damage until you die, and because your character reacts to every hit, escape is very difficult.

My overall completion was 84% and I was bored for the majority of it. Im sorry but I wouldnt recommend this game to my friends but I would recommend it to people I dont like.
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5 of 7 people (71%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
5.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 18, 2015
I've only played 3 hours, but this game gives me twinges of Out of this World, Flashback, Super Metroid, a Boy & His blob, the cutscenes are straight up Wing commander or Ninja Gaiden and the music? The music is a perfect fit for the late 80s early 90s aesthetic the game is going for. Pretty much nailed everything! The ONLY negative I've found so far is the default CRT shader is a bit overpower with the bloom effect, but the subtle setting nails it. If you like side scroller action adventures, this game is for you.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
23.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 27, 2015
A pretty cool mix of Flashback with heavy leanings towards Metroid best describe the feel of this game. The music score is quite simply phenomenal. Composed by Keiji Yamagishi himself, of "Ninja Gaiden" fame. The Royal Bath melody in particular I never grow tired of hearing. Enough can't be said about having really good background music to set the mood and accompany you while traversing around the depths of the planet.

Most would agree that controls are very important in a game like this. Thankfully you'll come to find the controls are very solid, tight, and responsive. Far to many indie games drop the ball when it comes to controls, but Exile's End certainly got it oh so right.

The plot itself is rather typical sci-fi fair with some interesting undertones. A lone survivor of a spaceship wreck, finds himself stranded on an alien planet. You'll find yourself surrounded by a hostile environment, trying to figure your escape, while unraveling this foreign worlds mysteries without giving away to much.

Level design is very well done indeed. I really have to commend the developers when it comes to this particular area. So many little touches all come together to pull off a well crafted game. For example, generally when you're forced to back track (in order to use a key item you just discovered in a previous area) you're usually given a handy short cut nearby to use. Back tracking is kept to a minimum as much as possible. Unlike some of the lesser enjoyable games of this style; Exile's End doesn't make the mistake of purposely using backtracking as a tool to pad the game in order to make it seem longer. It also features a helpful mapping guide very much like Super Metroid's, which fills in new areas as you explore them.

The puzzles you encounter are fairly easy to solve. If not a little vague at times. Which encourages some old fashion problem solving skills. The solutions always make sense. It is nice that the game doesn't give you to many hints, or constantly try to hold your hand at every step of the way. In this way it stays true to it's retro roots.

Graphically it's very much up to par with some of the top SNES games of the golden era. The animated cut scenes look fantastic. Each of the area's has it's own unique look and theme which differentiates itself from the last in distinct ways. Keeping the game fresh each time you move into a new zone. Bosses, enemy monsters and other characters fit the unearthly forms that you would expect.

Difficulty is only moderate in normal story mode. The game allows for saves and also autosaves at the start of every screen you enter. This make it's pretty forgiving. Trying to find all of the items and secrets can be the most difficult part. I never found myself stuck for very long or felt any part of the game was unfair and overly frustrating. People looking for more a real challenge have Survival Mode avaliable.

Had this game been released on a 16 or 32-bit console of the day, I think the magazines of the time would have probably rated it atleast an overall 8.5 out of 10. It doesn't really do anything new, but what it does do well is bringing together elements from many classic games. Blending them into a different perspective with top quality gameplay.

Very high quality indie game that deserves a chance. If you've been searching for a game that can stand up to some of the best that 90's classic console gaming had to offer look no further than Exile's End!
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
6.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 15, 2015
Feels like a nice fusion of Another World and Super Metroid. Decent soundtrack and 16bit graphics/cutscenes. If you are into that type of thing, check it out!
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
Recommended
3.3 hrs on record
Posted: September 5, 2015
now i am a kid of the past in video games. played all the metroid games, all the castlevania games and many of the ones that copied them in that era. and have to say, whilst this is said to not be a metroidvania game [on its own page it says this], it has the inklings of other great games. as it also says, in the amiga days. and i see it

it does it well on its own merit of being like a game of the past. and realistically, it would of looked the most stylish, because of short cut scenes etc. it would of made a mark back in the day.

it technically is only 2 buttons. A - to jump, X - to shoot. but it does have a collection scheme where you can carry more than 1 weapon. so you actually use the 2 bumper buttons to cycle through. you also use DOWN on the dpad or analog to look down. which when i done it, sent me back to my youth when i had to do it. plus you also use UP as well to activate things. and really i like that basic system

gameplay wise it feels just like the games of yesteryear. sparse health pick ups. first enemies are easy to kill, with others that prove harder later on, plenty of back tracking. plus as well there is no tutorial, no constant pop ups. all you have to do is remember what people have said, look around, watch for cracks.
maybe it my own experience many years ago that have swayed me with this, because all of what i have said i like. it knows what it is and it does it well.
i personally dont like the hand holding games have becoem with tutorials, so when i find something that lets me just do it, i like that. i can just get on

computer wise it runs very well. the OST is awesome. xbox controller works completely fine, and really you should play with one.
easily recommended

rating: SOLID
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