If you were a fan of the classic arcade games Smash TV or Robotron, Mutant Storm was made for you. Like Smash TV and Robotron, Mutant Storm utilizes the two-stick method, which means one stick controls your movement while the other controls your direction of fire. Don't worry if you don't have a gamepad with two directional pads; Mutant Storm can be configured to work with the keyboard or keyboard/mouse.
The game starts simply enough, even if you have to get a handle on the two-stick method. For those that may not be familiar with either Smash TV or Robotron, each level consists of a screen-sized arena, which is then flooded with enemies. It's your task to blast the enemies within the time allotted with whatever firepower becomes available. After the first couple of levels the challenge ramps up considerably and not just because the enemies become more aggressive and harder to kill.
Mutant Storm is a great looking game, with plenty of snap and pop to the graphics. And It doesn't seem to matter how much is roving around the screen, things never slow down and the lighting effects are very nice to watch. It's almost too good looking for its own good. Except for your ship, which is essentially an arrow. When things get hectic it's actually easy to loose track of where your ship is.
I've experienced "null-time" before - entering that state of pure concentration when everything falls out of your peripheral vision and time no longer exists - but Mutant Storm consistently put me into that null-time zone. The graphics seem like epileptic neon and when the screen is packed with enemies you practically have to enter that zone to proceed to the next level - no matter which power-up you manage to snag. To say it's intense is almost an understatement. In this way it avoids being addictive because it'll keep you satiated for a long time - that hit lasts a long time! That being said, it's the perfect game to fill time because it's so good at emulating the arcade experience (though with no quarters).
The real downside to Mutant Storm is the audio component. PomPom is an indie developer and in most cases any kind of audio would be welcome, but Mutant Storm should honestly be played with the volume set to off.
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