Jump, jump. Slide, slide.
I never managed to get into FuturLab’s Velocity game on previous machines. Something about it never clicked with me, and I moved onto other things without ever returning to give it a fair chance. This is why I forced myself to handle this review, as my colleagues have been telling me how addictive this hybrid shooter/platformer really is. I am glad I did. Once it clicked after the first few levels, I discovered what makes Velocity 2X so addictive. The pitch-perfect controls and intricately designed levels make progressing so much fun.
For anyone who hasn’t had the pleasure of trying out FuturLab’s title, it is a mix of shooter and side-scrolling platform title. The ship levels are designed to be blasted through. Getting used to the controls takes a bit, but once I got the hang of it, I was whizzing through them without stopping; and that is the point. Learning the levels and getting through them as quickly as possible will earn better medals. Sure players can simply complete levels, but the challenge is getting through them as quickly as possible, while also collecting all the survivors. Later levels are extremely challenging.
Platforms: XB1, PS4, PC, Vita
Price I’d Pay: $14.99
The side-scrolling levels are less frequent, but feel more like a runner. Lieutenant Kai Tana blasts through these sections, jumping, sliding, and collecting gems along the way. Again speed is the goal, but players can still pass them without having to be the best. Jumping is tight and leaves little margin for error. The best part of the game is that checkpoints are frequent, so failure is never really a massive setback. Restarts are also almost instantaneous, which definitely helps with the want to go back and perfect runs.
While the controls are great for the most part, the teleport mechanic does get a little fickle to deal with. Considering players can aim where they want to go, I found myself a lot of time smashing into a wall when trying to make a speedrun. This is an inherent problem with the design of the game. For something that is intended to be completed quickly, there is a lot to take in. Whether it is the touchy teleport mechanic, or remembering the controls on both the ship, and on-foot controls, mastering levels is more complex than it should be.
Visually the game is easy on the eyes. The sharp models and colorful design really make for a good-looking game. Everything also blazes by at breakneck speed. I really enjoyed both the style and the design choices. It is a fun game to watch. The soundtrack is typical techno beats, but they fit the mood nicely. I was not a big fan of the menu system, as it feels more convoluted than it needs to be.
Velocity 2X is a fast-paced game that trips over its own complex mechanics at times; especially when trying to achieve higher scores. Still players can still enjoy the entire game without fear of having to perfect each level. Anyone who enjoys twitch-based arcade titles that focus on speed as opposed to methodical play. Still it is hard to argue how much fun can be had with this arcade-style title.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.