AstroAvenger Review

Developer: Divo Games Publisher: Divo Games
Release Date: December 24, 2004 Also On: None

I am not a hardcore gamer when it comes to shooters. Still, I enjoy playing them from time to time. I do not want to waste my time with a 08/15 shooter, though. There are already enough of those. The problem is that AstroAvenger is exactly that: a 08/15 shooter.

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It has your standard enemy-designs, they lack unique characteristics. The level designs are standard too and more or less only consist of incoming enemies in always the same patterns. The variety of enemies is small; you always get the same repeating waves attacking your ship.

The weapons are quite cool and upgradeable, but there are only 5 of them. The first two are pretty normal particle weapons, but the third one is a problem. It sends out lasers that automatically aim at enemies, so you’ll be flying through levels, pressing the fire button all the time and only sometimes evade incoming bullets. That makes gameplay pretty dull. Later you might also want to use the fourth weapon from time to time, because it has amazing destruction power. This adds a little to the gameplay because in later levels you will actually be switching between those two weapons.

There are also different rockets but I yet have to find a practical use for them. The only useful one is the insanely powerful (and quite expensive) nuclear strike that blasts everything on-screen to pieces. This can be quite useful against the final boss of a world. I already hinted that you buy weapons with money. You get money for destroying things (surprise!) and you can spend it to buy and upgrade weapons, to upgrade your battery (so that the power for your weapon does not run out so fast) and to upgrade your hull plating. Repairing your ship after a mission also costs some money.

Your ship is either controlled with the directional buttons or with the mouse. I found mouse control to be much more comfortable. The game’s story is nothing worth talking about, but that is almost to be expected from a shooter game. AstroAvenger does not take more than a few hours to finish. The graphics are quite nice 3D, but there is not much to look at besides repeating enemies. Still, it can make blasting enemies to pieces fun and the good sound supports that.

So, is this a game worth checking out? If you do not expect anything but a basic, straight-forward shooter then AstroAvenger can keep you occupied for some hours. There are better shooters on the market, but if you need something to play, check out the demo. You should not expect much more from the full version but the relatively low price might make it a game worth buying for you.

Graphics: 8
Sound: 7.5
Gameplay: 6.5
Creativity: 4
Replay Value/Game Length: 7
Final: 6.6
Written by Ortwin Review Guide

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