Monday, February 20, 2012

Game of the Day - Exzisus

Exzisus is a 2nd gen (as far as I count them) horizontal shooter with one distinguishing characteristic.  It is fucking fast.  I mean lightning.  I've played lots of similar games from the mid to late 80s, but there is something about the enemies, attacks and general coding in Exzisus that just ratchets up the frantic and the crazy.

The controls are simple, just a gun to shoot and bombs (that are tossed out behind you).  You can get power-ups that take the form of changing your equipment and appearance as you morph from a dude with a jetpack into more powerful spaceships.  What's cool is that when you are hit by enemy fire, rather than dying, you regress to a previous, less lethal state.

The graphics, while typical of this era, are very pleasant and the backgrounds are especially nice.  The parallax scrolling of the hills add to the nice scenery.

To reiterate, though, this game is all about speed and twitchiness.  It's not necessarily that the enemies coat the sky with gunfire like modern games, just that there are so many of them in so many varieties attacking from everywhere at once.  The speed with which you can move also adds to the frenzy.

There are other small features like a map in the upper right corner to indicate your progress and the fact that the enemies start to arrive from far away in the landscape so you can see what's coming, but all you really need to do is crank it up and start blasting.

There'll be a spelling test on the title of this game next week.

1 comment:

  1. The most striking thing about this game is the original cabinet.

    It used the same cabinet setup as Wyvern F0 (not emulated) consisting of 2 display outputs and mirrors.

    This setup allowed the sprites to be projected physically above the backgrounds giving a 3d effect when played on the original cabinet similar to how the graphics on an original deluxe upright Space Invaders appear to be 'lifted' from the physical artwork used as a backdrop.