Click here to return to the main site.
PC Game Review
Dystoria is a new shooter game from Tri-Coastal games a 2-man indie game development company from Canada. The game has a very retro wireframe '80s arcade vibe going on.
From the opening CGI sequence the game was heavily influence by The Last Starfighter (1984), you are recruited via an arcade machine to face challenges only the best pilots are worthy of. Not sure what they are getting you ready for as this is only the trainer.
Your mission is to traverse various puzzles which are made from blocks. Your ship can move backwards and from side to side, but there is no up or down. Basically your ship hovers just above the surface. If the game consisted of a single block your ship would be able to fly across all of the surfaces. When you move from one surface to another the whole block orientates itself so it is always below you.
Of course, this ability to move across all 6-axis is made both more complex and more interesting by having the actual puzzles made up of several connecting blocks.
There are a number of objectives. Firstly, you need to either collect orbs, or blast a requisite number of enemy ships, which will unlock the portal to the next puzzle. Along the way, you have several things which you can collect. NUCLEONS appear as yellow diamonds and if you destroy an enemy you can also pick up salvage, both can be used to either buy better ships or to equip the ship you have with better weapons and shields. The game includes ten upgradeable ships which are unlocked with sufficient nucleaons.
The sectors are best explored methodically as you can also pick up ship parts and bombs. The bombs are pretty useless at killing enemies, but they will destroy glass blocks, so long as they are not framed, which allows access to hidden areas and more goodies. They are also useful for accessing portals to other parts of the map, which are otherwise unreachable. Later, in the game, you can get access to SPEED RAYS which do the same job.
You can get a bit lost with all the changes in direction and orientation so the game provides you with a zoomable map to show your location.
On the plus side the game is very smooth and the controls responsive. The exploration is challenging and the game offers up a number of different difficulty modes. Apparently, you also get free DLC downloads for life, but, as yet, there is no news if these will appear. I guess it depends how financially well the game performs.
On the down side, you quickly discover that the sector aims only come down to either collecting orbs or destroying enemies, which gets a bit samey after a while. Also, their much-lauded Killer retro-future synthwave '80s soundtrack tended to get on my nerves after a protracted period of play.
Overall not a bad game, it plays well, if a little repetitively and a bit too short, but if they really are going to release DLC’s then it’s probably worth picking up.