The ONLY thing “wrong” with Robo Pixel Games‘ brilliant bullet hell on steroids Gunnihilation is there’s no online play, and this is coming from a guy who dislikes online play in most of his games. The “shut up and play it!” Early Access game is so much fun as a local co-op experience that it BEGS to be shared with as many friends as possible, which in this era of “friends” meaning “many people you and I solely know through social circles” is a bit impossible. But that also leads me to believe Robo Pixel is smarter than I am because that simply means MORE of you who should play this need to just buy it ASAP.
Everything clicks in the current version, but I’ll chime in later with a few things friends who’ve played with me say needs work just to be an even better experience. Controls are dirt simple in order to get even novices into the fun fast. As you SHOULD use a gamepad (I can’t see doing this insanity with a keyboard with much success, but that’s just me), one stick moves and jumps, the other aims, triggers and buttons work as you’ll see from the signposts placed strategically throughout.
Even on the Novice difficulty setting the game does its level best to annihilate you and anyone you play with. Robo Pixel took bits of Contra, Metal Slug, Midnight Resistance, a bunch of “bullet hell” games from Japan and probably some Lingham’s Extra Hot Sauce with a pound of Death Wish Coffee for an extra jolt, tossed them all with some fine coding skills and unleashed quite a beast here. Crank up the challenge to Medium, Tough, or Absurd depending on how much of a masochist you are and watch the game respond accordingly.
As you can see from that trailer and screens, Robo Pixel knows how to impress with some fantastic yet “simple” sprite work that’s animated flawlessly. Just running about the incomplete lobby is a treat if only to hope that game room on the left side gets working mini-games at some point. The Under Construction areas are also a huge tease, as that trailer above promises user created levels (YES, please) and what’s looking like an expanding amount of other fun content.
In-game, what can I say except go watch that trailer again and watch your wallet slap you in the face for hot having it ready fast enough. You get a blazing fast frame rate, way too much stuff shooting back at you, tons of bodies piling up (in an amusing manner, mind you) and all of it coated in a great soundtrack worth buying if you want music to drive or walk by as you imagine getting yourself back home to play more. Or not – distracted driving and walking is bad, even if you’re a top-shelf digital baddie destroyer!
As for those issues friends had? Well, a bigger character selection or editor was one request, as was a way to remap the controller or keyboard. Not a complaint about THIS game, but one I have about Steam in general with high-action games is you CAN’T take screenshots with a controller! There are so many fun and chaotic moments were we were all cracking up so much that no one was able to reach over and jam on the F12 button. That’s something that needs to be rectified, I say.
Anyway, yeah. Gunnihilation just rocks. Get it and go tell your friends to move so they’re closer when you all want your fix. And yeah, tell them to bring their own damn controllers, too. Robo Pixel needs to get this baby onto consoles a some point, as I’d buy a few copies just to pass around to folks who need a blast from the past as a present.
Preview code provided by the developer.