After reading Jarret’s review on JoyJoy, I decided to pick Inferno which is another game developed by Radiangames. I figured that I couldn’t go wrong spending 80 MS Points ($1) for an action shooter game. Not to mention the game already has a 4.5 star rating on Xbox Live. After playing through all 30 levels in one sitting I sat back and felt very satisfied. The kind of satisfaction you get from finding an awesome deal for an item, purchasing it, and then realizing what a steal it was after you used it.
I decided to play the game on hard mode and see if this twin-stick action shooter could keep me feeling challenged and glued to my controller. Boy, did it not disappoint! Visually the game is made well and the game play was smooth. As I paced through the levels the visual elements helped add to the challenge and fun experienced in the game. If you take a look through the screenshots you’ll see that the developer has done a great job making this game look polished and stunning. As your powers increase the visual impact of seeing your firepower hitting the enemies and having them explode while trying to escape their bullets adds to the whole on-your-toes feeling.
The premise of the game is simple and is adequately explained by the developer; “Explore 30 levels, collect gold, upgrade your ship, and destroy everything in your path” along with exiting the levels safely. The controls are very easy to learn with the left stick keeping your ship mobile while the right stick fires your weapons. The left trigger/button allows you to detonate bombs that you collect or buy in the shop and the right trigger/button gives you a temporary shield that protects you from all damage. As you progress through the 30 levels combat gets more and more hectic starting with stationary enemies, then moving enemies that try to collide into you, and finally enemies that are as mobile as you with varying firing rates.
You encounter a boss on the 15th and 30th levels. This was one aspect that I wished the developer had incorporated more into the game as the boss fights were definitely lots of fun. You are also provided drones that assist you in mowing down your enemies faster and they are a must-have for certain areas in various levels. The temporary shield ability is also important to use when making a strategic retreat or running through an area full of enemies. There are also bonus exits that you can take to gain access to levels that have a 30 second timer with plenty of items to collect that will assist you in further levels.
There used to be an embeded media player here, but it doesn't work anymore. We blame the Tumbeasts.
A little RPG element is added into the game where you are given upgrade points as you progress through certain levels. The gold you collect by killing enemies and other gold items allow you to unlock other upgrades as well as the next power up level for each upgrade. The beauty of the upgrade points system is that the point allocation is not permanent and you can change them any time you have access to a shop (usually at the beginning of the level) to customize how your ship will be enhanced for that level. After completing the game’s 30 levels a new Game+ mode is opened that changes the background colors and provides you with more upgrade points with all upgrade options unlocked.
Besides finding bomb, drone and gold items, you also have keys that you will need to procure to unlock certain areas of a level to progress further. At times you might encounter an area that seems impossible to cross into and that is when you discover hidden spaces that your ship can traverse through. These spaces were very useful in taking down enemies in the room without being touched. Not sure if the developer intended it to be used that way but it was very handy to have.
As far as the sound element is concerned the soundtrack has a great techno beat and combat sound was well integrated into the game. If you are interested in downloading the soundtrack the developer has made it available at the following link – Inferno Soundtrack.
I went ahead and downloaded the other games made by Radiangames (JoyJoy & Crossfire) and after playing both of them, I think Inferno is my favorite! Fluid looks interesting but doesn’t seem up my alley even though it looks well-made and interesting. So if you are wondering what you should do with those 4 quarters in your pocket, I would suggest that you pick up Inferno for 80 MS Points($1).