Platform: Steam, Windows
Reviewed on: Windows
Players: Single player
Written by Dragoon 24th April 2015
Sometimes putting a fresh twist on an old classic can give it new life and this is what Allicorn Games have tried with their debut title Heckabomb, a modern interpretation of retro arcade games like Asteroids. It’s a twin stick shooter (so best played with a controller) where you control the lone surviving human ship, the planet busting Heckabomber, and aim to get revenge by blowing the heck out of some alien planets. Gameplay comes in two different sections, each offering a different playstyle.
The first involves you destroying asteroids to collect materials to upgrade your ship. After a set amount of time you are told to jump out but you can choose to stick around to gather more material at the risk of being blown up by solar flares and losing everything. These sections are fairly boring and the asteroids split into irritatingly small parts that are often hard to see but the idea of the risk/reward of staying longer is good.
You then get to upgrade your ship and repair your shields, which do not regenerate between rounds. There are a good number of upgrades to choose from that range from new weapon types to speed boosts for your ship. Unfortunately it feels like you spend the majority of your materials on repairing your shields which means you end lacking firepower.
The second part is a survival battle where you have to fight other ships and survive long enough to get to the planet in the background. Once you get to this planet you drop your “heckabomb” and are treated to an explosion that wouldn’t be out of place in a 4th July fireworks display. These sections are the meat of the game are pretty fun and fairly difficult, enemies can be a little strong at times though and it is very hard to not get hit with the amount of bullets flying about, which does keep it exciting but it does feel a tad unfair at times.
Graphically the game is fairly vibrant but the models and effects are bog standard, which is fine since you don’t really have time to look at them in the middle of the mayhem and the focus was obviously elsewhere. The game has a great soundtrack which fits the action without being intrusive. The game itself runs well and is fine to play on lower end machines, although the amount of menu options are limited. There is a leaderboard for the competitive players out there who can try and one-
Overall Heckabomb puts enough of a twist on the classic foundations it is built on to warrant a try. It may not be flashy or overly intuitive. I would have liked to see more of a focus on the ship fighting part of the game since that’s what I had the most fun with but Heckabomb is a good old fashioned romp with a great soundtrack and is hopefully the start of a bright future for Allicorn Games.
Fun old school gameplay.
Boring asteroid levels,
Poor shield system,
Hard to see visuals.
Heckabomb swoops in and drops a 6/10.