Monday, June 11, 2018
"Omega Strike" Review
Part Metroidvania, part Mega Man and part Contra, "Omega Strike" is a side-scrolling, exploration-based action game with loads of charm along with a satisfying challenge-reward loop.
You hot-swap among a squadron of teammates with varied talents, in the vein of the old "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" titles. A strongman can shove heavy objects, an athletic gunman can double-jump, and a quick, shifty figure can scamper from outmatched battles, avoiding conflict altogether.
The writing, which references gaming culture and action flick tropes through the ages, is one of the high points, providing welcome comic relief from the often brutal challenges that await you.
An archaic save system -- you have to check into a portal to record your progress -- both dampens the fun and imbues the combat with a sense of urgency. Robbed of the typical auto-save handholding, you find yourself heading into choke points with a fevered drive to succeed rather than a lackadaisical outlook, because failure could set you back several minutes.
Level design is compact and efficient, with devs cramming 12 bosses and 45 enemy types into the circuitous catacombs.
The lighthearted tone keeps things from getting too tense, with the story segments easing in welcome breaks from the do-or-die moments. "Omega Strike" plays just like your favorite game from when you were 12 that didn't happen to actually exist back then.
Publisher provided review code.
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