The Cambridge Geek

Super Crome: Bullet Purgatory

Not done a game post in a couple of months, so a bit of catching up to do.

First up is a bullet hell shmup (and I've just got the name), in which you play as Crome, a pilot trying to fight off a giant army of aliens. To do that, you've got a snazzy spaceship and a traditionally upgradeable blaster to slaughter your way through a probably infinite number of baddies.

As well as your basic weapon, you've got three special weapons: a charge shot, remote turrets, and my favourite, homing bullets. They're energy-limited, and recharged by murdering enemies, and good lord there's never enough of them. You've also got a defensive move in the form of an invincibility-granting dodge. Brilliantly, I tend to dodge into enemy attacks most of the time.

So good at dodging.

Obviously there's a fair few different ways they try and kill you, whether that's homing bullets of their own, cheekily healing each other, or exploding into firey death balls that attempt a posthumous murder. They have individual patterns, but when you get half a dozen or more on screen at once, it's less a case of predicting the best place to be and more frantic running about at great speed trying not to lose one of your four lives.

The bosses, strangely enough, feel slightly easier (at least the first couple), because they do have more rhythm and a more predictable pattern, but the Calamari-inspired one is my current hard stop point. The game is currently arcade-style, meaning you get randomised level choices and bosses, though these are small in number due to it being early days of the development. (One particular annoyance of the raw state of the game is the lack of a pause function. My god, it needs one of those.)

Space octopuses. Always deadly.

The game has limited variety at the moment, but it's remarkably cheap and has managed to keep dragging me back to it. Even though there's still plenty more to do on it, it has an excellent "one more try" grab, which isn't hurt by the fact I'm surprisingly high on the leaderboard. (I'm aware it's new, and so there aren't many other challengers. It's only downhill from here, so I'm going to enjoy my tiny achievement while I can.)

I will never be this high on a leaderboard again.

It's got a very retro feel, with graphics that are simple but fit for purpose, and match the similarly sparse but pleasing sounds. I'm especially fond of the lovely little explosion you get when something is blown to smithereens.

I'm less fond of the one you get when you or your assistant bots die.

Not at all annoying.

Certainly worth half the cost of a cup of coffee to fans of shmups, and one I'm likely to keep picking back up as it gets more added to it.

Score 4

Tagged: Game Shmup Topdown Hard difficulty PC