Rid the planet Titan of acid precipitation in this ultra-cool 3D space shooter.
If you’re a fan of the 1982 cyberpunk sound-and-light show Tron, then you’ll likely fall hard for Spacework Red Edition, a game whose world is a little bit virtual reality, and a little bit Deep Space Nine.
In the game, you control a small robot that can shoot lasers and hover for a limited time using a jetpack. Shoot enemy machines that eat away at your life meter, and gather items to unlock inaccessible stages. You’ll be navigating your beam-flinging character in an impressively rendered 3D universe: Use the jetpack to reach various levels of platforms to avoid baddies and reach destinations. You’ll also have to be careful in the many nooks and crannies, as enemies regenerate.
The most striking aspect of the game is the gorgeous scenery. Shapes and colors are pretty basic, but the landscape artfully blends futuristic and retro game design elements. To put it simply, this game smacks of Tron‘s charms, reminding us of those quaint depictions of “the future” we saw in the ’80s. With intuitive controls (press the keyboard arrows to move, click the mouse button to shoot, use the cursor to change views and hold the space bar to hover), it’s easy to get around the fairly expansive, polygonal world that’s reminiscent of the earliest forays into virtual reality and 3D gaming.
But while it’s fun to explore your eye-catching environs, it gets pretty difficult to pinpoint the relatively small items needed to move on to the next stage. That being said, it’s also sort of hard to figure out what to even do, at least in the beginning. Are we supposed to destroy all enemies? Are we supposed to find a hidden teleporter? It’s pretty much up to you to figure everything out. Granted, that’s challenging, but at least some guidance, any guidance, would’ve been welcome. And while you’re given the controls at the start screen, you may find yourself forgetting them as you begin playing, and there’s no in-game control guide that could’ve easily been included in a pause menu screen.
Overall, Spacework Red Edition is an immersive, high-style adventure that doesn’t hold your hand. It’s clear a lot of work went into it. It sports a retro-futuristic setting that’ll certainly pique the interest of the Logan’s Run and Reboot enthusiasts among us.