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 Post subject: Galaxy Shooter (PS4 - XB1 / Series X|S - Switch)
PostPosted: Mon Nov 15, 2021 11:13 pm 

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Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 550
Location: Autobot City, Sugiura Base
Well, time to continue our journey in the world of Indie shmups.
Today's review is Galaxy Shooter/Galaxy Shooter DX.

Welcome to the game.
Press "Play" to start the Prologue.

Right after the title screen, the game will send you to the Hangar/Menu screen, where you can rotate the camera and zoom it in and out to have a better look to the ship. At first there's no prologue or intro sequence since Stage 1 is the Tutorial and Prologue at the same time.

That time when arcade-like shooting was boring.

This vertical scrolling shooter takes the concept of "Basic" to a whole new level since your regular fire is automatic, just like the Genesis port of After Burner II where the vulcan fires on its own. Not just your main weapon, your sub-weapons are also auto-fired, making the buttons almost useless except for select options on the menus and at the level clear/failed screen. Such strange decision is quite questionable since by pure logic you'll expect to have full control of the ship's weaponry. Speaking of controls, the game lacks of D-Pad support, leaving you with the Analog Stick and like most shmups like Natsuki Chronicles (both XB1 and PS4) have that calibration problem where moving the Analog Stick to a direction slightly moves you to another (moving left slightly moves you up or down), this can lead do accidental damages or deaths.
Another absent element is the score indicator, for an indie shmup advertised as "Arcade like", having a score and hi-score is essential. You might be thinking "The Credits indicator is the score" doesn't work if you take a look at games like Forgotten Worlds and U.N. Squadron where the game had both score and money indicators.

You'll be watching this very often, so get used to it.

Death is something that's gonna happen very, very, VERY often. First, because no bad game is complete without the nefarious Turridamage, so you'll probably go down with small stream of bullets hitting you at once. Second, if you die once, the mission will be failed. There's no extra lives if you are shot down. And Third, you will be killing yourself deliberately in order to get more credits and upgrade your ship. I could say that's like in the SNES port of U.N. Squadron where you burnt your first continue on Mission 1 for the sake of money boosting, but in Galaxy Shooter's case is just ridiculous. Does stage re-visiting was too much?, I, AI was a good example of what I'm talking about, despite it also required constant re-visitng. Well, let's talk about the boss fights, shall we?

You'll meet him twice in the whole damn game.

Unlike most shmups, you'll be meeting the boss each 10 stages, this boss features three modes: Shoot the center first, then the turrets and finally, the cannons and armor before finally hitting the core one last time. This boss (and the stage) can be exploited for a quick boost in credits via constant suicide since the boss without being killed can give you 1,000 credits. In Stage 20, the only difference is that the boss has double the health on all of its parts, so it's gonna take you four minutes or so to take it down with your ship fully powered. In any way, that's not creative, it's the bottom line of creativity as if the game designers said "I can't think of more bosses. So, let's make the game longer" in their "Divine" logic and speaking of length, those stages repeat themselves. You'll be watching the same asteroid stage, same planetary surfaced stage and the same industrial facilities twice and even thrice, only the amount of Credits dropped are the difference since they slightly increase on each stage. Now that we're talking about the credits, let's talk about the shop feature of this game.

Peace sells, but who's buying?

The shop goes beyond simply upgrading your weapons, it also grants you the option of equipping more armor and even shields for your ship. Obviously, all of these benefits come with a cost, and that's where your Credits are used for.

Like the description says, these are the combat equipment for your ship.

AVENGER: Your regular Vulcan shot with average fire rate that provides a basic full frontal fire.
Upgrade Price Tags: 300 > 360 > 415 > 475 > 600 > 910 > 1215 > 1520 > 1835 > 2200 > 2805 > 3445 > 4110 > 5000

MAXIMUS: Machine gun side-cannons that provide a rapid fire rate increasing the width of the ship's fire.
Purchase Price: 1600
Upgrade Price Tags: 705 > 830 > 965 > 1020 > 1500 > 1770 > 2060 > 2345 > 2610 > 3600 > 4040 > 4550 > 5050 > 5700

PROTECTOR: Diagonal firing cannons for a basic spread shot.
Purchase Price: 2400
Upgrade Price Tags: 1000 > 1145 > 1275 > 1420 > 1800 > 2105 > 2380 > 2635 > 3040 > 3900 > 4400 > 5015 > 5670 > 6200

HORNET: The homing missile that locks on your targets. Keep in mind, Missiles are only fired when artificial objects like enemy ships are on screen, so they're useless against asteroids in Stage 8.
Purchase Price: 1300
Upgrade Price Tags: 510 > 625 > 745 > 850 > 1150 > 1335 > 1575 > 1810 > 2055 > 2840 > 3430 > 3995 > 4565 > 5150

The second energy bar for the ship. Failsafes that keep you from being "Turricrapped by Turridamage" for a little while.

FRONT SHIELD: Frontal defense for the cockpit section of the ship.
Purchase Price: 400
Upgrade Price Tags: 450 > 525 > 600 > 775 > 900 > 995 > 1100 > 1215 > 1300 > 1485 > 1640 > 1795 > 1950 > 2100

TOP SHIELD: Force field for the top section of the ship.
Purchase Price: 800
Upgrade Price Tags: 975 > 1060 > 1170 > 1265 > 1430 > 1545 > 1670 > 1790 > 1910 > 2075 > 2230 > 2400 > 2595 > 2760

ENGINE SHIELD: Energy barrier for the engines.
Purchase Price: 1400
Upgrade Price Tags: 1490 > 1605 > 1685 > 1750 > 1900 > 2085 > 2150 > 2280 > 2410 > 2630 > 2820 > 2990 > 3155 > 3350

This is where you buy engine improvements and armor for your ship, which are vital to survive as far as possible in the game.

ENGINES: Increases the total of Speed Points and maintains the ship's speed in order to equip and upgrade both armor and weapons.
Price tags: 400 > 510 > 615 > 720 > 890 > 1050 > 1145 > 1270 > 1400 > 1705 > 1925 > 2100 > 2330 > 2600

MAGNET: This passive upgrade attracts the Credits obtained keeping you in a "Safe distance" from enemy fire.
Purchase Price: 500
Upgrade Price Tags: 825> 1120 > 1460 > 1850

COCKPIT ARMOR: Armor plating for frontal attacks.
Purchase Price: 260
Upgrade Price Tags: 300> 355 > 410 > 565 > 640 > 705 > 790 > 880 > 970 > 1080 > 1205 > 1355 > 1490 > 1640

WING ARMOR: Armor plating for the wings.
Purchase Price: 610
Upgrade Price Tags: 680 > 770 > 865 > 950 > 1055 > 1160 > 1295 > 1420 > 1550 > 1780 > 1935 > 2080 > 2230 > 2400

ENGINE ARMOR: Armor plating for the engines.
Purchase Price: 1060
Upgrade Price Tags: 1145 > 1250 > 1345 > 1430 > 1600 > 1720 > 1845 > 1960 > 2075 > 2250 > 2425 > 2580 > 2740 > 2900

Short for "Modifications". These are actually alternate skin colors for the ship. Armored parts get darker tones to distinguish them from the rest of the ship's frame.

Galaxy Shooter: Kurt Busch/Gearwrench Edition.

SKIN DRACO (10,000): Blue Eastern-like dragon decals on the wings.
SKIN FIRE (10,000): Dark grey with flame decals surging from the front of the ship.
SKIN SKULL ALIEN (10,000): Dark grey with an extraterrestrial skull on top of the ship.
SKIN SKULL RAM (10,000): Dark grey with a ram's skull, Dodge enthusiasts will love it.
SKIN SKULL HUMAN (10,000): Dark grey with a human skill, The Punisher's "Seal of Approval" not included.
SKIN TOXIC FIRE (10,000): Dark grey with green flames, proper for Monster Energy if you ask me.
SKIN INLOGIC (5,000): Combination of Orange vertical linings with an horizontal black border on the front.
SKIN BLACK (5,000): Glossy Jet Black color for a stealthy look.
SKIN BLUE (5,000): Blue colored ship. Turn your ship into the Blue Man Group's starfighter.
SKIN GREEN (5,000): Green with grey. For those who want an UNSC-like coloring for the ship.
SKIN ORANGE (5,000): Orange with grey. Nothing "Citrical" about it.
SKIN RED (5,000): Red colored with grey detailings. It gives the ship an Estovakian (Strigon Team) look.
SKIN VIOLET (5,000): Purple colored ship with grey detailings.
SKIN WHITE (5,000): White colored ship with a few grey details to break the monotony.
SKIN YELLOW (5,000): A "Grey and Yellow" combination where Yellow is the predominant part as the skin name implies.
SKIN DIGITAL CAMO (10,000): Digital "Pixelated" camouflage in the style of the SU-57.

As you've noticed, the shop has the same outrageous price climbing like I, AI but much worse. forcing you to go money grinding by comitting deliberate suicide in an exaggerated amount of times in order to max out a particular upgrade. Basically the whole game falls in a line of repetitive that the best way to describe it is like if you were regurgitating and redigesting your lunch over and over again. Sounds disguisting, but sadly its the truth about how cruel and tedious this game is.

Looks like there's some "Heavy Weight Problems".

Unlike any normal shmup with a store system, Galaxy Shooter will drop a slow down warning stopping you from purchasing a new weapon since they add weight to the ship and that slows its overall speed. To keep buying weapons and upgrades, it's OBLIGATORY to buy engine upgrades and level them up.

You've completed a great game.
And prooved the justice of our culture.
Without the video game, let's try anything else.

After all the credit grinding and dealing with 20 levels of the same repeated stages and defeating the same boss in Stage 20, this is what you get. The game pulls the "Continue the fight, for the war is not yet over" stunt as an excuse to make an endless loop of stages. Well for the game "Continue the fight", but "for the war" is already over for me 'cos that's the moment where I press the menu button and select the "Close the application" option.

The game was ported on the XBOX One as Galaxy Shooter DX, and the only difference is a galaxy...a simple galaxy in the background of the hangar screen, the rest is the same game. No rebalanced things or reasonable improvements to differ it from the PlayStation and Switch ports.

2000's Web-comic styled artwork!

The graphic aspect is simply dark. Not because of the constant outer space background, but also for the dark palettes chosen for the structures and the planetary surface stages. More than looking visually stunning, it makes them look boring and lifeless. Like Ginga Force and Natsuki Chronicles, hexagonal structures are a dominant theme for the sake of science-fiction and futurism and it works quite well, despite the dark colors used or if its on space or in a planetary surface which is, by far, the only point in favor for the whole game.
One major problem of the armor is that ruins the colorschemes of the ship as we have these black blocks covering the fuselage rather than adapting to the rest of the ship, making it strange looking as it "censors" the decorations on some of the skins.

The character style, well it is a return to the western styled look of american and european cartoons, but with the color and shading of the early 2000's Web-comics, a quite forgotten era of artworks if you ask me.

The music is like the gameplay: Repetitive in very extreme levels as the industrial-action like soundtrack plays the same 2 or 3 songs throughout the 20 stages making an already boring game more frustrating than it should be.


To become what? A Kindergarten Cop?
Also, a Terminator joke?, This starts to look like The Expendables 2.

- If you look closely, the cockpit shows two seats, implying the ship is a two-seater aircraft, but the game only shows one pilot.
- The trophy name "Demolition Man" might be a reference to the 1993 film of the same name.
- Kraathu is a nod to Klatuu from the film The Day the Earth Stood Still.
- The name of the Kraathu mastermind, Cerebro is the spanish word for "Brain".
- The total of Credits required to pick all the upgrades in one shot is of 417,655 Credits.

You've heard Nina.
We can finally go home.

Galaxy Shooter is a sorry attempt to a great vertical shooter in the vein of Ginga Force and U.N. Squadron as it tries to add a plot narrative, characters and money investments, but ended up falling down at the moment of truth with a cascade of problems mentioned throughout this review. It's like "They had the potential, but they dropped the ball" when it comes to executing the idea of how to make a shooter and ends up becoming the videogame equivalent of the Milli Vanilli's lip-sync fail. Every god-damned second spent in this game is basically "Girl you know it's Girl you know it's Girl you know it's Girl you know it's Girl you know it's" repeating until you clear Stage 20 or when you pull the plug in this thing.
It might be an excessive exercise of repetitivity, there's but one thing certain for sure: It has more replay value than any of Breakthrough Gaming's titles.

Fan of Transformers, Shmups and Anime-styled Girls. You're teamed up with the right pilot!
Bringing you shmup and video game reviews with humorous criticism.

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