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 Post subject: Straimium Immortaly (XB1 - PS4 - Switch - PC)
PostPosted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 8:16 pm 

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Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 352
Location: Autobot City, Sugiura Base
If Earth Atlantis and The Aquatic Adventure of the Last Human are the genesis of the "Shmuptroid" genre, then Straimium Immortaly is another entry in this new genera of Metroid-esque shmups.

Super Shmuptroid

Straimium Immortaly is the sequel of Straima, which was an extremely difficult action adventure platformer. This time, they decideded to give the game a different turn and came up with an horizontal Metroid-like shooter.
Before you can start the adventure, you can select the size of the dungeon, Small Cube is a 7x7 dungeon, Medium Cubic is 9x9 wide and and Big Cubicus is a 11x11 square sized maze for expert players.

Being a game based on Metroid-inspired elements, the gameplay is focused on exploration. The main priority is to find 4 Big Keys to unlock the "Queeni" room which is the main boss of the game. To find a key you've must enter vortexes called "Vortexicas" where enemy groups are guarding chests with weapons or even a key that you'll need to enter the boss of that specific region of the maze.
Each session is different from the other because of the Procedural Generation of the room layouts. This means that despite being a squared maze, the path you're gonna take will be different from the last dungeon you've visited.
Fortunately, you are equipped with two skills: Warpy Dodge which is like the Zero Teleport from Alien Soldier: A short ranged dash, which only works to evade bullets 'cos if you try to use it to pass through bullets or enemies like in Alien Soldier, you'll get hit or even killed. You also have Ninja Power which is your special skill like a ramming attack which can be changed for a sword strike. Some of the Ninja Powers can only be used once while others are unlimited (like the Sword Strike). There's also weapons out there to help you like Leveled up lasers, spread shots and rapid vulcans. To complete your arsenal you have the Special Fire, which is your secondary weapon that consumes energy, your default Special Fire is a long range laser shot, which can be later replaced with different attacks.
Another benefit is that if your life and/or special fire gauge is full and the game throws you an item to refill one of them you can pick it later as long as you remember on which room they were, like an "emergency first aid kit" of some sorts when it comes in handy, really in handy.

Makes me wish the store was attended by someone more human.

During your journey you'll find a store where you can buy three different items. The game uses "Pinky" as cash, which is obtained by killing pink blobs that appears on most rooms after clearing all the enemies there. There's giftboxes that gives you random items, along with the common items that provide you slight upgrades. Speaking of items, there's hidden hats that change the character's head from a wizard hat to a duck head. There's also 6 unlockable characters to play with.

Hey, it looks like the Mt. Splashmore stage from Virtual Bart.

Sometimes, the game throws other mini-activities like navigating through a tunnel while dodging enemies in Mode 7-like zooming, or an Alex Kidd jankenpon (Rock-Paper-Scissors) guessing minigame where you can bet a treasure by paying a few pinkies to play, or even give a bunch of pinkies to feed a large creature that burps an item out after eating. Some of the activities are meant to win things while others are just level progression between one point to another. However, doing these activities will turn the room into a golden room in the map screen. A Golden Room implies that everything the room requires you to do has been completed and thus you can explore it without enemies respawning, it is also part of the "Goldening" achievement unlocked by turning all rooms gold.

I'd rather play Donkey Kong than this.

There's a mini-game called "Straima Classico" which is a basic Mario Bros. jump-and-squish platformer in Gameboy-styled monochrome graphics and sound. Even for a mini-game, it is too stingy with the lives, since you only have 1 and then it's Game Over. This game can be unlocked by finding the "Straima_Classico.rom" item in the game.

Redefines the quote "No Pain, No Gain" in a very extreme manner.

There's a room with an empty circle surrounded by red spikes where do you have to lose life by getting damaged by the spikes, so the circle fills with your blood until you get an item in return. Using the Pinkies as cash is one thing, but sacrifying my life?, That's annoying, considering that if you die, you'll have to start the level all over again, and there's no save stations to try again if you screw up.

Like the opening song of "Droids" said "I wouldn't care but it's a dangerous affair. Cause I'm in trouble again, trouble again".

The worst part of the game is its main feature itself: The Procedurally Generated dungeons. Just like with Atomine and Atomic Heist, changing the room layout everytime you respawn only makes memorization an unreliable method on the exploration factor. As a long time Super Metroid enthusiast, i can explain it like this: Is like grabbing the game layout and turn it upside down again and again and again, and that's when the game is no longer fun and borders into the infuriating because there's no Save Station in case you die during the exploration.
Controls are against you, because holding the fire button locks your character's aim, unlike Metroid where you can shoot on any direction, this can be fatal because most of the times you think by instinct that if you move to the left, the character will do the same rather than having an aim-lock for holding the fire button, something that could be addressed by holding another button (any Trigger button would do the job). Another problem is that the basic shot doesn't go fully straight, it goes up in an inclinated angle of around 5°-10°, making it kinda erratic and annoying at the same time.

Nice. [Expletive] beautiful. ¿How am i supposed to navigate through the room?

If the difficulty settings aren't already a pain, the game throws more dumb moves at you. One of them are the rooms covered with fog that covers 75% of the screen, and even worse, rooms that FORCE YOU to give one of your hard earned extra hearts to unlock all the doors to advance. This is where any normal Metroid player would call it quits.

The way this game "talks" is worse than childish "Nah thankies", "Yeh Pweases", "Steady on you haves limited supply of laser pain", "Yous are turnin into a proper mass killa", It's like ¿Who made the script, a 3 year old toddler after watching an action movie?

The graphics aim to create a bizarre 8-bit world that blends the graphic styles of the NES and the Amstrad CPC, but manages to bring quite surrealist detailings in the backgrounds, along with some of the multi-layered aspects of the scenery like the waterfalls or the digitized fog, the spherized view of the Straima Classico mini-game evokes a retro monitor, but the colors are more reminiscent of the GameBoy. This attempt to recreate and modernize the retro style is something that works quite good in this game and perhaps is the only positive aspect about it.

What you're looking here is a monster that eats your Pinkies and burps an item.
That horrified Shinji Ikari screaming you just heard was probably you.

Looks like i'm gonna "Bring the Big Guns" once again just like i did with my Solar Shifter EX review, but this time it will be even bigger due to the abhorrent look of those things. The only way to describe the character design is "disturbing and nightmarish", in an attempt to make them look like a blend between cute-yet-dark, they've created these monstrosities that go beyond your wildest nightmares. I mean, the characters of Sine Mora EX were quite troublesome, but Straimium Immortaly is just unbearable and repulsive. They're the kind of stuff that is burnt into your brain for a long time, making the whole Bydo Empire look like Pee-Wee's Playhouse.

The only way not to be traumatized with them would be pausing the game each 20 minutes and watch your anime girls gallery in your computer or cellphone (HINT: Girls in swimsuits and bunnysuits while hearing ZZ Top's "Planet of Women" will really help to ease this unbearable game).
Since you're already watching these monstrosities in my review, here's something that will relax your eyes (and you'll understand what am I talkin' about). You'll be thankin' me for this. Trust me.

If you have the answer, drop me a line today. Or send a straight jacket, something in a shade of gray.
I think I've sprained my brain 'cause it won't unwind. Every day it's man against man on the Planet of Women. Oh, Yeah!
Just a Planet of Women. Oh, Yeah! It's driving me insane, it's driving me insane!

The music is a mixture between NES/Commodore 64-style chiptune and some cd-quality instruments tossed at random like drums and keyboards in a music style that can only be called "Experimental" since is not techno, rocking or tribal, but it is calm, like a weird calm among the dungeon chaos around you. The shop room music i swear it sounds like it was influenced by Cusco, 'cos it reminds me of the track "Didgeridoo" from the Australia album, without the Didgeridoo of course.

- The quote "Yis with great murders comes great niceties" is a pun on Ben Parker's "With great power comes great responsability" quote from Spider-Man, which is also known as the "Peter Parker Principle".
- "Classico" is pronounced "Clat-see-co" as if it was an italian word.
- The "I am Error" message is a reference to Zelda II: The Adventure of Link.
- "Welcomes to doom" is a reference to Neff's quote "Welcome to your doom" from Altered Beast, later said by Arcanon in Altered Beast: Guardian of the Realms.

In conclusion, Straimium Immortaly is what can be called another addition to the newely formed "Shmuptroid" genre, and is a very weird Shmuptroid if you ask me. With bizzare, nightmarish reptile-like beings, weird ways to talk, and experimental-yet-relaxed music. The whole thing feels like an experimental videogame, one of those that makes you ask yourself "¿WHAT THE HELL AM I PLAYING?".
To put it simple, is one of those bad games to avoid like a Bydo plague.

I promise my next review will be something more enjoyable for our eyes.
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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