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access_time May 6, 2014 at 9:00 AM in Reviews by Charlie Grammer

Review | Titan Attacks!

Titan Attacks! is a tribute to classic arcade shooters.

Titan Attacks! is a tribute to classic arcade shooters.

Curve Digital has released the PlayStation 3 version of a tribute to classic arcade shooters by Puppygames, Titan AttacksI today. The developers created the game in an attempt to recapture that feeling of classic shooters, such as Space Invaders, while at the same time adding in some of the innovations that have graced the genre since. Were they successful? Read on to find out.

The game places you in the role of Earth’s final surviving tank commander. As the final surviving warrior, it falls completely on you to repel the alien invaders. The game’s enemies come in several varieties, with some moving like the enemies in the classic Space Invaders, some being stationary, some moving straight down, and some just scrolling across the screen.

As you shoot down the aliens, occasionally you’ll have the chance to score bonus points by shooting a ship that starts falling rather than explodes. Other times an alien will bail out of a ship before you destroy it, allowing you to make a choice. You can let the alien go, thus costing yourself a bit of cash, shoot the alien for no penalty or bonus, or capture the alien for a bit of a cash bonus (and later, trophies). In addition to these, a special flying saucer will occasionally run across the top of the screen. Shooting this enemy will cause it to drop a bonus, ranging from cash to shields.

The cash is utilized to upgrade your tank. You can add on extras, such as a missile launcher and laser beam, increase the power of your shots, increase the speed of your shots (thus allowing you to have several rounds on screen at once), increase the recharge rate of your add-ons, increase your shields (thus allowing you to take more damage), or grab some smart bombs, which can typically clear out everything on screen (except for bosses). It should be noted, however, that utilizing the latter will make it so you won’t get any cash during that level unless, of course, you either grab a live alien or one of the special flying saucers drop a cash bonus.

The enemies will typically get progressively harder as you advance through the waves, though a few of the later stages in each world are a bit easier than some before. These easier stages are usually only easier because most, if not all, the enemies there are stationary, so while they can take more damage before going down, they also pose less of a threat.

What would an arcade shooter be without bonus levels? As you advance through the waves of enemies you will come across levels that don’t immediately take you to the upgrade screen. As soon as you notice that you aren’t heading to that screen you’ll want to get ready, as flying saucers will start appearing on the screen. If you get a certain percentage, you’ll gain bonuses, such as extra shields, cash, and extra smart bombs.

Overall the game’s graphics, sound, and gameplay are all very nostalgic of the classic retro shooters that Titan Attacks! is a tribute to. Add in the fact that the PS3 version doesn’t have one of the major drawbacks that people complained about in the PC version (utilizing keyboard during stages, then having the action broken up as you’re forced to use the mouse during the upgrade screen), and the game becomes a great tribute to the retro titles. If you’ve been craving a classic arcade shooter, you’ll likely want to pick this title up.

Final Score: 4 out of 5


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