Title: Super Galaxy Squadron
Platform: Steam, Windows
Reviewed on: Windows
Players: Single player
Written by Bad Demoman 3rd February 2015
As I mentioned in my review of Outland, I have a certain thing for shmups. I've played a fair bit of Touhou although I'm never good enough to beat one, and I refuse to give in and go for easy mode! So along comes Super Galaxy Squadron with its promise, in the words of the developer Nick Clinkscales, to “not compromise fun over nostalgia”. That sounds like a goal I'm definitely down for, and with all of the proceeds going to the Child's Play charity I was exceedingly excited to give it a go!
A lot of people groan when they hear the word ''Accessibility'', especially in regards to a genre known for its difficulty like Shmups. It's definitely not the terrible thing it's made out to be though, especially when done right. Super Galaxy Squadron achieves its goal of accessibility through its two difficulty modes. Normal mode forgoes the standard one-
The gameplay is pretty standard fare for a shmup, progressing through 6 stages comprised of a short section of smaller, standard enemies followed by an epic boss. The standard enemies provide an opportunity to collect upgrades, which carry through until the end of the game. As a result of this, early on these parts of the level may provide some challenge but I found myself blitzing through them in later levels, especially through use of the Hyper meter. Collecting credits dropped by enemies can lead to almost endless chaining of the Hyper. To be honest though, I'm rarely drawn to shmups because of the minions before the main event – and with some of the most shmup-
This is because of the number of playable characters that you can choose from – 14 to be precise. That's the most playable characters I've seen in a shoot-
All of this awesome gameplay is tied together with some truly stellar graphics. While the backgrounds are surprisingly diverse for a shmup set in endless space, the real attraction is the ships. With so many different kinds, its amazing that each one still manages to have an entirely unique and detailed design. Backing up these awesome graphics is an equally awesome soundtrack composed by Random Encounter, who happen to be my favourite band. Consisting of high energy chiptunes and rock, the soundtrack really adds to the excitement of fights, especially with bosses. When I reached the final boss for the first time, the music genuinely gave me goosebumps and got me really hyped to beat this game.
While I certainly enjoy the old classics like Raiden, Super Galaxy Squadron succeeds in bringing a little bit of modern accessibility to a genre that seems so steeped in retro traditions. I think I'll be playing and replaying this one for a while to come.
Accessible gameplay done right,
Sections before bosses lack challenge.
Super Galaxy Squadron scores a super 9 out of 10.