Pearl Harbor Trilogy 1941: Red Sun Rising
- WiiWare / 700 Wii Points (£4.90)
For anyone with an incurable weakness for a decent aerial combat game, Red Sun Rising ought to be an appealing prospect. With its intuitive and precise tilt-based controls, impressive visuals and decent roster of missions, we should just skip straight to the conclusion and tell you to get on with buying it. It's only 700 measly WiiWare points, after all.
The problem is, it's just nowhere near as fun as it ought to be. Brutal difficulty spikes abound, and within a few missions you can't shake the feeling that Legendo didn't quite get around to balancing certain sections.
More often than not, you're left trying desperately to shake off enemies blasting you with unerring accuracy from behind, rather than getting on with the all-important task of blasting foes. No sooner have you lined yourself up for a shot, you're being raked with fire again, and so the pattern goes on. Rather than help you out with a lock-on system, it's all a bit hit-and-hope, and rather stacked against you.
If you can deal with endless failure, then there's the bones of a decent game in here. With a bit more substance to the missions and a few control refinements it would have been a must-buy. Let's hope Legendo gets it right in time for the next two parts.
- Xbox Live Indie Games / 240 Microsoft Points (£2.04)
It was a little remiss of us not to get around to reviewing radiangames' JoyJoy a couple of months back, but it's fine. Look! They've got a new one out!
This time, we get Space Invaders with a nifty flanking mechanic. Bedecked in Geometry Wars' glowing neon, lines of enemies do their usual bullet-spewing dance while you dodge the death shower underneath and dutifully sweep up the collectibles.
Able to flip to the top of the screen with a flick of the trigger, you can quickly turn the tables on your aggressors and get in behind them. They soon get wise to your tactics, though, flipping their orientation and giving you precious little opportunity to chip away at their defences in a frenzied cat-and-mouse affair.
Played with a co-op buddy in tow, the chaos cranks up further still. Working together to clear a path, there's a hint of playability through the blizzard of unrelenting bullet hell, but it's fleeting.
At times it feels like radiangames is onto something. By the time you get to the later levels, the needle strays into the red so often that participation almost feels futile. Devoid of balance, Crossfire quickly turns into little more than a fireworks display.