Nex Machina: Death Machina
This is an horrendously fast and crazy blur of a game. I played Nex Machina (published by Housemarque) on my PC via Steam, on Arcade at the Rookie level, for beginners, and there was no way I could keep up with it. This is not a fault of the game it is a fault of me getting older and slower, I just cannot get my hands, eyes and fingers to all be doing the correct things at the right time.
The critters first appear as concentric circles flashing on the ground and then up pop the bug-looking monsters and they swarm towards you. Your control your combatant by moving it via the Arrow keys or WASD and spin him to face the enemy by the mouse, keeping the left mouse button pressed down for continuous firing.
The monsters come at you in file formation to begin with and so they literally run headlong into your fire and they die on single hits. Unfortunately for you as get towards the end of the line of Bugs another unit of Bugs pops up behind you, and then another to one side and more from the other side. You can try to run away and keep firing but eventually you are going to run into their mass and once that happens you go down pretty quickly.
Luckily in Rookie mode you have unlimited continues (lives) - in Experienced Mode you get 99 lives and slightly faster adversaries, the next level is Veteran and you only get 10 lives and even faster and stronger creatures and finally if you are good enough to unlock the Master level you get just 5 lives and critters that are as blindingly fast and strong as Rocky on speed.The screenshots I have taken (with my camera) on here are from the demo that runs if you leave the Title screen on for 30 or so seconds. Trying to aim my camera at the screen and control my guy on the ground was impossible. There is possibly a way to take screenies direct, in case you are wondering about my use of a camera, but neither [Print Screen] nor [Ctrl] + [Print Screen] worked for me.
What you can see from the somewhat blurry screenies is just how fast the movement on screen is, plus you get an idea of how colourful and expansive the terrain can be, though whilst playing you haven't the time to appreciate the work that has gone into this.
Once you click [Enter] to begin the game the screen appears and your hero is dead centre (and I don't use the word "dead" sparingly) and the mobs start appearing. There is no time to check the terrain or scout the area, it is immediate and at a velocity rarely seen in an "Easy" game mode for PC or Console.
Despite not being very good at it, or getting very far into it, I still enjoyed it for some reason. I was mesmerised by the colours, the flashing lights, the continual rush of Bugs. It reminded me of the first Starship Troopers movie trailer and I wanted to shout "Whoo Hoo!" and play Blur's "Song 2". (you'll have to remember the film trailer off the TV to understand the reference).
I often use the following words in a review as I find it best to try to give readers an idea of the gameplay and so I say; if you are a fan of fast-shooting, fast moving, top-down view maniacal mayhem then go to the Steam Store and spend just £14.99 and get what they are calling the "Fastest Game Alive" (I felt it was that at Rookie level which indicates how speedy it can get if you reach Master).