Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Webnesday - Star Guard

A few months ago when I first started writing for ForceDisconnect I
tried getting an idea rolling for a score and achievement based
contest. It was supposed to promote some friendly competition in the
community and just get the word out about some of the fun and cheap or
free games around the internet. Sadly, after two months, the interest
in the contests was so low I stopped running them, but there was one
gigantic victory in that contest. Everyone got to play, and immensely
enjoy, an indie gem by the name of Star Guard.

Star Guard, from developer Vacuum Flowers, is kind of like Contra but
with the ability to go backward. Apparently you're part of a unit
sent in to defeat an evil wizard. Or so the incredibly bleak text in
the background as you play tells you. You see some of the guard along
your way, firing at the enemy and more often than not getting killed
in the process. For a run-and-gun shooter with graphics that remind me of the Atari 2600, it still manages to be an interesting and unique experience.

I actually don't want to spoil much about the game, as it's really one of those titles you should check out for yourself. Some will probably just walk away thinking they played a Contra clone or the most simplified Metroid ever, but others like myself will find a game that somehow draws you in and keeps you coming back. I loved trying to find each enemy in certain levels, or trying to get my time lower, or making it through without dying, or all three. It didn't matter. It was all fun. And, oddly enough, the presentation, with its four colors (two being black and white), had a charm and appeal to it that a lot of multi-million dollar budget games don't even come close to capturing, along with a world and story that was somehow as interesting as it was simple.

If you want to try out Star Guard (and why the hell wouldn't you?), go here. Even though it's free, I'd love to see an XBLIG or XBLA version and would gladly pay money to have it on my 360.

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