Okay everyone. There is this awful future. Some sentient race of creatures has invaded your space port or mineral colony or something and it’s up to you to destroy them. You have to crawl through a space that is dense with creatures wanting to maim and or otherwise kill you. Did I mention that these creatures move usually in circles or recognizable patterns? Did I also mention that they aren’t actually sentient and are just mindless? Also did I mention you can’t hit these machines directly?
Okay so that’s pretty much the made up story for this game called Radial Plus. Radial Plus is a side scrolling shooter with a twist. To hit any of the many enemies trying to destroy you must ricochet your shots off walls or around corners to hit them in their flanks. Doing this destroys them, but their fire keeps moving toward you. Enemy fire also bounces off of walls so watch out for that. Patience is normally a virtue, but you may need a lot to be successful in this game. Your gun shoots fast but overheats, which slows your shots considerably. Next, two consecutive hits will take you out. There is a short cool down time on your ship’s hull which means you can wait until the beeping tone stops and then resume moving. There are no lives in this game. You can retry as many times as you like. However, upon your ships destruction you are immediately ushered back to the start of the level no matter where you are. The levels aren’t terribly long but the machines sent after you can make it very difficult.
I’m normally a shooter or MMO type person where I rely on speed, stealth and quick decisive moves to take out my opponents. This game simply requires patience and a bit of strategy. The graphics for being a side scrolling game aren’t bad. Nothing is pixilated and the laser blasts are very crisp. The ships destruction makes me think fondly to old Mega Man III for the old GameBoy. You split into four pieces like Dustman’s blocks did. The sound also is fairly good for the game. The music inspires a sort of desperation or impending doom without sounding annoying. The sound effects for laser blasts as well as their ricochets are also well done. All in all, the game requires a bit of patience, strategy and thought. So if you’ve got the time and want a strategy scroller with a slight dash of nostalgia, check out Radial +.