TeraBlaster – Review
Follow Genre: Retro Top Down 2D Space Shooter
Developer: Black Shell Games
Publisher: Black Shell Games
Platforms: PC
Tested on: PC

TeraBlaster – Review

Site Score
Good: Fast pased, Retro, Nice soundtrack
Bad: Low variety of enemies, noisy sound effects
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Some games will never die as their concepts are constantly reused. It is well known that Asteroids was repeatedly imitated and has directly influenced many other arcade games. Most times, this implies updated 3D graphics and epic space battle sound effects to make the game acceptable by contemporary standards, but in the case of the 2D top down space survival shooter Terablaster, the developers stayed as close as possible to the original. Terablaster deserves to be named the latest heir to the legacy.



You take control of a circular spacecraft in a galaxy composed of a grid bearing boxes. Tons of hostile vessels varying in shape and size come charging for you. The further in depth storyline is very well hidden and revealed through mysterious one-liners that are revealed upon your demise. For example, when your precious ship gets blown to smithereens, a message appears : “This is a story that concerns how wanderlust was like dreaming.”. There certainly is an intriguing storyline buried deep within this game, but you will only learn it while mastering the classic gameplay.



The visual aspect of Terablaster is nothing too fancy, but it gets the job done. All shapes in the game are very basic, completely in line with the retro-feel. Although this works perfectly in the case of the background and the environment, the opposite is true for the enemy ships. Apart from the uncommonly rare tanks popping up every now and then, every new wave of hostile alien hordes looks copy pasted from the previous one. A little more variation would hone the excitement of this game just a tad more. On the plus side, the simplistic colour scheme ensures the player does not get confused between what’s coming to destroy his craft and the debris of annihilated foes.



The retro soundtrack is one that can get stuck in your head for quite some time. It provides a decent TRON style vibe and integrates nicely with the atmosphere of a retro game such as Terablaster. Typical gameplay is just about the right length (around 90 seconds) for the music to not get boring. Unfortunately, the game’s audio effects are not synchronized at all. The gunfire alone muffles the otherwise excellent tunes. Providing options to lower the sound effect volume is definitely not a feature that can be missed, yet it seems to be lacking, or at least it is very well hidden in this game.



The gameplay has withstood time as not much has changed since the 1979 classic space shooter “Asteroids” by Atari. The legendary gameplay was and still is acclaimed worldwide by players. Add the trademark simple graphics and controls – by the way, Terablaster now has full gamepad support- in there and there you have an instant a recipe for success. Just like in the old days, the player has control over a spaceship in the centre of the screen, which is periodically swarmed by spaceships. The only objective of the game is to destroy these foes and blocks while avoiding collisions and enemy fire. The game gradually gets more intense and difficult with increased numbers of enemies appearing.

A nice feature is found in the form of the level randomization. At the start of each level, a random configuration is placed on the map consisting of blocks of various colours. For example, gray blocks may contain a power-up while the red versions are powerful explosions that can easily wipe you out. And because there are no resets or continues in this game, you’re better off keeping this aspect into the back of your head. However, it seems some additional work can be done on the randomization, as every level is reduced to the same flat, boring grid by the time the game is lost.



Terablaster is a nice reminder of how the universe of gaming came to be. This modern variant of Asteroids stays true to its heritage and brings exciting space battles, spiced up with a more than decent soundtrack. The game is technically sound and has a well-defined, lagless flow. Despite the flawless gameplay, the game can become quite monotonous. For example, the randomized levels are over-advertised, as they are very simplistic and after a couple of shots from your main cannon, they are all reduced to a flat rectangle covered in debris. The same stands for the limited variation in enemy spacecraft. Every one of them is a circle or a derivative of it, with the sole exception of slightly larger foes that are tank-shaped. Overall, if you are looking for an exciting, retro game that can captivate you while still giving you the option to put it down at any time, Terablaster is a good candidate to suit your needs.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
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