Tyrian (PC) review
"The greatest shoot-'em-up ever made"
Few video game genres are as intuitive as the scrolling shoot-'em-up; move a ship around while shootin' up the bad guys. Yet few genres are currently so niche as this simple mode of gameplay. This strange disparity is due to no inherent flaws of the shmup genre but by flawed design that permeates almost every title. A game in which repetition and memorization is the only way to avoid dying in one hit from waves of oft poorly telegraphed obstacles is not an acquired taste. That's bad game design. This, along with blatantly insubstantial amounts of content that banks on the player wasting time doing the same stages repeatedly due to getting one-shotted or obtaining worthless bragging rights, has resulted in the genre having very limited appeal. However, Tyrian stands above its competition, achieving a level of quality that puts almost every other game of its genre to utter shame.
An immediately apparent aspect that promotes Tyrian above other shmups is the customization system. Unlike other shmups that have points systems to pad a blink-and-you'll-miss-it campaign, Tyrian's points system doubles as currency to buy various upgrades, including weapon powerups, new ships, more weapons, options, shields, and a generator that allows for more efficient use of these. Player skill is rewarded new tools of destruction, and the player can re-appropriate spent upgrades to try out new ones, encouraging experimentation and adding replay value by diversity. Some upgrades appear after certain levels, instilling long-term strategy into customization that stays fair thanks to an incredibly user-friendly saving system that includes both autosaves and dozens of spaces for manual saves, a much better system than having to beat the whole game in one sitting.
Community review by Follow_Freeman (June 16, 2018)
When he isn't in a life-or-death situation, Dr. Freeman enjoys playing a variety of video games. From olden shooters to platformers & action titles: Freeman may be a bit stuck with the games of the past, but he doesn't mind. Some things don't age much.
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