Gigantic Army – Review
Follow Genre: 2D Arcade Mech-shooting
Publisher: Nyu Media
Developer: Astro Port
Platform: PC

Gigantic Army – Review

Site Score
6.5
Good: Nostalgic, back to basics, budget-priced
Bad: Only 6 stages, might be better of on another platform
User Score
7.0
(1 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 7.0/10 (1 vote cast)

When 3 people teamed up to create an homage to the classic 2D Arcade Mech-shooting franchise, they created Gigantic Army. They call themselves Astro Port. In the past, they’ve created games like Armed Seven and Satazius. Now they’re back with another explosive action shooter. Their goal is to remind everyone how much fun the genre can be.

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Story

The game is set in a fictional 2009 where the invention of a warpdrive, allowed the humans who are known as the Terran, to venture further into space. Naturally, the Terran managed to get into conflict with alien races. The current conflict is one with a race known as the Ramulon, which the Terran managed to drive back to their home planet but sadly the battle has just begun. As a soldier of the Terran Ground Forces, you fight the Ramulon head on in an attempt to destroy their strongholds, known as Citadels.

Graphics

It would be unfair to compare this game to a current-gen title. Don’t expect a jawdropping graphically experience from a 16-bit game. At the contrary, the beauty lies in its simplicity. It’s a style that’s getting used more and more lately, be it in indie titles or mobile games.

Sound

Soundwise, the game offers the quality you would expect. Firing the various weapons sounds satisfying but background sounds and music add nothing more to the experience.

SS0014Gameplay

Starting the game up for the first is a bit confusing and this is because of the default controls. Granted, I was using an azerty keyboard but I’ve never had difficulties with that in other games. First thing I had to do was remap all the keybindings, which luckily is possible. Otherwise the game would’ve been unplayable. By default, the “return-to-main-menu-key” was next to the fire-key. That caused some frustration at first.

After reading through some background story the game literally drops you right into the fight. You control a groundsoldier in a mech-suit. The game is a 2D-sidescrolling platformer which means that the only ways are forward, backwards, up (thanks to a jetpack) and down. At the start you get to pick one of 3 main weapons and special weapons. Main weapons include a shotgun, assault rifle and grenade launcher, whilst special weapons include cluster bombs, missiles and a beam cannon. Of course those last ones come with a limited amount of ammo/charges.

Going through the stages is pretty straightforward, as in most action-shooters. The catch here is that you only have a limited amount of time to get to the end of them. You can get some extra time by grabbing items, along the way. Next to extra time, you can find power-ups and healthpoints (depending on what difficulty you picked). Of course you get attacked by aliens as you go. The first ones you encounter don’t offer much of a challenge but gradually new enemy types are added and offer quite a nice mix-up. Every stage (there are six of them) has 2 bosses. The first one always pops up once you get in the middle and then there’s one at the end. The boss fight mechanics are quite fun and require you to stay focused and often also require you to restart a stage once you get the hang of them. Saving up your special weapon charges will of course help you loads here.

There’s a catch in the game, something modern-day gamers are not used to. You can not save the game. You get 3 credits at the start. If you die in a stage, you get to restart that same stage but obviously lose a credit. The same goes for when your time runs out. If you complete a stage, a little bit of HP gets added back and your remaining time gets added to that of the next level. If you quit the game, your progress is lost. You’ll either love it, or hate it. Then again – this brings us back to that good old arcade genre.

SS0005Conclusion

For me as a reviewer, it’s not easy to criticise a game which pays homage to a genre that I’m not that used to. Taking that in mind, I feel that the game could be more sucessful on other platforms. Maybe on consoles through their gamestores or even more on mobile platforms. Especially when dealing with a short and budget-priced game. Regardless, for fans of the genre this game should bring a satisfying experience and memories of a past era.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 7.0/10 (1 vote cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Gigantic Army - Review, 7.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating
Veflow
Veflow


I'm currently studying software-development. My main hobbies are gaming (software/hardware) and music (jazz saxophone player). I game primarily on PC (and also love building them) but also play on PS3, iOS and Android.

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