Break out of a mining prison in Dynamite Jack, the next game from Galcon creator Phil Hassey

Jack was a heroic space marine, until he was captured by the enemy and put to work in the mines. Now, armed only with some dynamite and a flashlight, he’s got to bust free – and blow up some guys in the process.

The upcoming Dynamite Jack is an unusual beast. It’s a top-down stealth-action game featuring maze-like levels, traps, roving guards and explosions – lots and lots of explosions. It turns out that when Jack made his bid for freedom from the mines, he took his detonator with him, a device that gives him access to an unlimited supply of explosives. That’s pretty handy, but there’s a drawback: he can only deploy one bomb at a time, and he must detonate it before he can set another.

That limitation adds a strategic twist to the gameplay, as Jack will have to take care with where he plants his bombs and how he leads his enemies into them. Aiding him in that task are what appears to be very poor lighting conditions in the base he’s attempting to escape, providing plenty of shadows in which to hide, although that’s a bit of a hindrance toom since Jack doesn’t see in the dark very well. Enter the flashlight, his other tool of survival, which not only helps him see and avoid the many devious traps that threaten to end his day in an unpleasant hurry, but also drives away creatures who live in the dark and run from any light source.

Dynamite Jack

Dynamite Jack

Dynamite Jack is rendered in “glorious 2D” with flashy neon colors that make Jack’s prison look like nothing so much as a discotheque of the future. The game has definite echoes of the classic Bomberman, but the addition of frantic, line-of-sight sneaking across a wide variety of deadly environments should provide a unique twist on the “blowing stuff up” game genre.

Dynamite Jack is being developed by Phil Hassey, who previously gave the world the real-time strategy game Galcon, and will come out for the PC and Mac on May 10.