While playing this, I realised that I haven't reviewed a lot of shoot'em'ups. Of course the reason is obvious: there aren't a lot of 2D shooters coming out for the PC these days, and out of those few make the grade. Either because the controls suck, the visuals are jerky, the graphics are abstract (that's justifiable in freeware games as there's a LOT of assets needed for a shoot'em up. Also, having the graphics abstract is not a bad thing some times, but seeing that everywhere just gets old), the game is short, etc etc etc. But then I started up this game and was greeted with this:
which quickly became:
The only thought that occurred to me was "wow". Direction, smoothness, nicely drawn gfx, tons of parallax and effects, responsive controls, tough as nails difficulty... I certainly wasn't expecting that :).
So yeah, it's a side scrolling shooter, with the main character having 2 weapons in its disposal, bullet spray and a huge laser which drains pretty fast so you have to use with care. You have no energy bars, so touch anything you shouldn't and you're toast. Each enemy you kill throws some coloured gems that you can pick up for extra score. As you hit each enemy a number next to it appears so you know how much energy it's got left, which is quite handy. Every now and then you encounter a boss that takes its sweet time to die and throws tons of bullets at you to avoid.
Sadly the game is not finished and will never be, but what's there is really good. I guess you know my verdict by now, go and try it out!