Come for the pew, pew, pew…stay for the highscore.
“Pew, pew, pew, pew, dodge, pew, upgrade, pew, bang, high score, explosion, dead.” If I had to review a game within the context of a single sentence, this could possible do justice to the entire shooter-em-up genre, but there are always aspects that make each game stand out. Roche Fusion is a game that harkens back to the days of trying to best your friends’ high scores, play co-op and survive, while dealing with the insane amount of things thrown at you at once on the screen. Does it do anything new, or better yet, does it have to?
The player gets to choose from one ship out of a handful that are unlockable, and then it’s shooting time. Kill as many bad guys as possible, while using reflexes and skill to survive. Always sounds simple in games of this nature, but it’s one that takes finesse. It’s the basis of most games in the genre, and this one is no different. Between rounds of racking up high scores and surviving wave after wave of enemies, players pick up new weapons, as well as abilities that will automatically help destroy enemies or protect the ship. One ability allows slowing down time to dodge bullets, and another can shoot a black hole vortex, sucking enemies (and the players ship if not careful) off the screen. It’s the combination of these abilities that can make or break a player’s run.
Price I’d Pay: $12.00
Gameplay-wise this seems to take a page from a few of the better known series out there. Imagine taking one part Geometry Wars, R-type and then last but not least Space invaders, adding in some procedurally generated enemy waves, and Roche Fusion presents itself. It has a very neon, wire frame presentation, and an electronic soundtrack to accompany it. After fighting a wave of enemies the ship is boosted forward to another area, sometimes stopping to choose an upgrade, and then back to shooting. Fighting enemies drops modifiers to the ship, and getting farther nets more multipliers to the score counter. Keep the good work up and players can eventually tackle some much larger enemies and bosses. While getting hit once doesn’t ultimately mean death, it does take down some of the ships regenerating shield. Getting stuck in the crossfire however will always lead to an explosive ending.
Roche Fusion is an extremely addicting arcade shooter. It might take a lot of ideas from various other games in the genre, but it still finds itself in the position to stand out and be unique all on its own. The soundtrack, while decent, tends to repeat far too much for my tastes, but otherwise I was hooked. Each session with Roche Fusion provided me with three things: hands clenching the controller with adrenaline, intense Zen focus, and that “just one more” feeling; what every good arcade shooter should do.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.