From indie developer Playstige Interactive comes the ‘fast-paced arcade shoot-em-up’, Blastful. A retro visual throwback that has plenty of shooting action across procedurally generated levels.
The old school promises are what will sell Blastful to those looking to lose a little time blowing the hell out of everything that comes towards you. However, many will likely have a bit of buyer’s remorse once they get into the game though.
Not because it is particularly bad or anything but rather that it fails to live up to its promises in all but a few areas. Let’s talk about the most important aspect first and that is gameplay.
Everything is just so small on the screen. Enemies come from the top and spam projectiles constantly. However, they’re so small, not getting hit is surprisingly easy. Instead, dodging the glut of projectiles just becomes annoying. Especially as, should enemies go off screen, they can still shoot at you!
Shoot and dodge until the boss is revealed, massive ships that look imposing but are just as easy to deal with as regular enemies. Destroy their turrets and they’re next to useless. Rinse and repeat across level after level. Old school this might be in visuals and sound but in difficulty, it really isn’t.
There are variations in enemies but they’re not significant enough to really notice. Powerups that you can collect are pretty much pointless. Different weapons with limited ammo, a shield that lasts for only a few seconds and health. Considering your default weapons has infinite ammo and you can hold the button down to keep firing, even bothering to move to collect powerups feels unnecessary.
Truthfully, it’s just not that much fun to play which is a real shame as visually it looks suitably retro and the techno beat music is pretty damn fine.
I wanted to love Blastful, especially when you see it priced as low as it is. However, that’s just not the case. It has too many flaws to ignore and what it does right can’t overshadow them.
The Final Score - 5/10