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 Post subject: Grood (XBOX One - PS4 - Switch - PC)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2020 8:15 pm 

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Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 379
Location: Autobot City, Sugiura Base
More XB1 shmup madness, this time is Grood.

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Horizontal shooting, the basis of all shmups who wants to provide a basic, yet fun challenge. Grood has that idea in mind and thinks on assured enemy destruction as you're equipped with a fast-fire rated gatling vulcan capable of inflict great damages on each bullet which really helps a lot for being a "basic" weapon. You're also granted with the ability of slow the game's speed down, unlike the bombs in any other shmup, you can recharge the slowdown with time and you can slightly accelerate its reload with successful bullet impacts on enemies. As you progress in the game you'll be able to get new and better weapons like the Shotgun which is stronger but with a low fire rate, the Laser which hits an enemy and "locks" on it until it is destroyed or goes off-scren and reloads your Slowdown faster than any other weapon, and the Rocket Launcher which fires a lot of homing missiles as you keep tapping the fire button, combined with the Slowdown, it is a very damage inflicting combination in the final boss fight.
All of these is, by far, the only positive aspects of the game, 'cos Grood is pelted with one flaw after another.

Graphic description of "Cruel and Sick Joke".

As if it was some kind of sick joke, the game offers Hard, Hard and Hard as "Selectable" difficulties.
I mean, the game's gonna be hard straight out of the box, just don't include a difficulty selection feature.

Does this squid counts as a Darius reference?

For a shmup, this game doesn't feature too much bosses, there's a total of three and while their attack patterns are easy to learn, they can be troublesome at the same time, keep reading the review to understand what I'm talking about.

You'll be reading this very often...
Whoever made this game is "Like a Cruel Angel". You're not gonna "shine like a legend" here, young boy.

While the gameplay remains simple and basic, it suffers from a lot of troubles which I'll mention in a moment, the worst of all is what I've call "Turridamage" (I'm sure you're familiarized with that term in the forum) where you keep receiving damage without having time to recover between hits like Turrican, and Turridamage applies on EVERYTHING in this game, even touching the ground, something that will also happen very often due to the sensitive controls. For some reason moving horizontally with the analog stick will slightly move your ship vertically, this also happened to me with other XBOX One shooters like Natsuki Chronicles and Lethal Judgment EX but not on the X360 ones like Strania and Triggerheart Exelica, but that's where the D-Pad comes in handy...except in Grood 'cos once you tap a direction it moves slow for half a second before it gains speed, and it repeats as you move on any direction, making it kinda awkward. Another problem is the die and start the level all over again, With "Turridamage" and awkward controls, this spells disaster, especially during the boss fight because ┬┐how are you supposed to practice on the boss?. As soon as you die you have to start the level all over again and navigate through the enemy formations and their multiple attacks ranging from the suicidal projectiles to the laser avoiding ones, in the later stages you'll have to make your way through a triple vertical beam firing enemy.

In a mistake no one should ever repeat again you can only continue until you reach the fourth stage, and trust me, reaching the fourth stage will be a Via Crucis of trial and error as the enemy patterns seem to change (Example: the first Sniper laser enemy will appear from above the first time you start Stage 3, and if you die and return there it will be below, etc.), breaking with the chances of memorize the enemy formations so you can have a slight chance. That's only one of the problems, and it gets even worse.
Philosopher's Path is gonna be the last stage you'd possibly reach. The reason why?, 'cos the game throws you a series of stupid moves, coward attacks and cheap shots: Machine Gun robots, Sniper Lasers far from your firing range, Vertical Lasers to avoid, all of that at the same time and dealing with the Turridamage problem that I've mentioned before, even if that stage doesn't have a boss at the end, the difficulty itself will bring any novice-average player to its knees.

Like Mars: Chaos Menace, this game is not just a Gamerscore Milker, is a Life-time Taker 'cos one of the achievements requires you to reach an accumulate of 10 BILLION DOLLARS in enemy damages and die 1,000 TIMES. Well, the first one is quite easier to reach in a few days by committing deliberate suicide crashing with the ground again and again and again and again and again, as for the 10 Billon Dollar damages, It will require of one game session after another, I've already got sick and tired of Mars: Chaos Menace, until I've got the 100 million point achievement there and that was a mediocre, yet fully functional shmup. In Grood's case is even worse, because some of the achievements are glitched and you will not be able to unlock them; "The weather outside is frightful" (Frozen Land) and "Urban life" (Abandoned City) won't unlock even when you reach the stage. In a twist of irony, the achievement "I am the new Lord" which is supposed to unlock after defeating the final boss is also glitched and won't unlock. "Sipping my Campagne" will stop at 74%, "Billion dollar Machine" at 7% and "Stock market crash" at 1%, Die Harder will stop at 28% (280 deaths). I've innocently thought it was an installation error so I've uninstalled and reinstalled the game and the achievements are still glitched. So, this game fails on its purpose as a Gamerscore Milker, just like XenoRaptor. Also, I'm sure I'm not the only one who've got this problem since the Achievement list of my XBOX says there's a very low percent of users who've unlocked them. An eternal testimony of "TEST YOUR GAME BEFORE RELEASING IT".
(NOTE: These instances happened on an XBOX One, I'm not sure if its the same on Switch or PS4 releases)

After e-mailing Drageus Games I've got the classic "We will find and fix the problem ASAP" answer. Hope they would 'cos the game is not free.

Last night I had a dream about you. In this dream I'm dancing right beside you
And it looked like everyone was having fun, the kind of feeling I've waited so long.

You've gave up on finishing the game?, here's the ending for you.
Groot meets GrooEtte, the TV couple is together at last proving that love is stronger than any machine. That's all.

Graphically, it looks like an old PlayStation shooter made by one of those small companies that "came and went all of a sudden", as it features simple CGI and very basic 3D scenery and polygonal graphics. The game mentions day and night transitions, but those go fast in a completely unrealistic way 'cos in 1 with 1/2 minutes is daytime, then nighttime and viceversa. Despite being horizontally scrolled, the camera tilts at angles as you move left or right, making it look like an slightly "Isometric" view, while the angle is not as drastic as in Ether Vapor where it took some practice to get used to it, it adds a sense of depth to the game's fast atmosphere without ruining the gameplay.

Looks like if the game was censored rather than looking retro.

There's an optional mode called "I Love 90's" which makes an attempt on looking like a 16-bit game, but instead, it looks like if you took a 16-bit rendition and you overpixel it making it look like a censored pic.

If you like Foo Fighters and Limp Bizkit you'll like Grood's soundtrack, as it features this Alternative-rock blend soundtrack, although there's a hint of Meshuggah in some of the tunes. Ironically, the game advertises the music as metal, but it sounds more like the "Alternative" genre. While there is a variety of songs as you navigate across the stages, if you die and choose to continue the game, the game will play the stage 1 theme instead of the one you were listening.

- Typing Grood on Google could also bring results related to Groot from Disvel's (portmaneau of Disney and Marvel) Guardians of the Galaxy.
- Desert Storm could be a nod to Operation Desert Storm from the 90's.
- The achievement name "Heart attack" is a reference to the Pulsing enemy's human heart shape.
- In a twist of irony, the city in "Abandoned City" has a lot of lights on, so its not-so-abandoned at all.
- "You damn teapot" refers to the Gunner's teapot shape.
- "Bigger and Loude" is a reference of "Bigger and Louder", missing the "R" at the end.

Don't let this sadden you, Lea.
There's more trash in the horizon.

After all the troubles, I'll only say "I'd rather play Darius Twin than this".
Looks like the XBOX Series X will suffer the same fate as the X1 when it comes to receive trash games. Grood is a disgrace of a shooter, with absurdes on difficulty, terrible D-Pad controls, harsh continue conditions and broken achievements. Unless you are a pain-loving player who likes your shmups to be "Tough as Nails" and you don't care about broken achievements, then pick it.
Fan of Transformers, Shmups and Anime-styled Girls. You're teamed up with the right pilot!
Bringing you shmup reviews with humorous criticism.

STG Wikias: Thunder Force Wiki - Wikiheart Exelica - Ginga Force Wiki

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