Nex Machina (PS4, PC) - (Robotron, Smash TV fans take note)

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Retro STrife
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Nex Machina (PS4, PC) - (Robotron, Smash TV fans take note)

Postby Retro STrife » March 2nd, 2018, 2:33 pm

I've been catching up on some indie titles during the past couple months. One of the most critically-acclaimed indie games in recent years is Nex Machina on the PS4. Released in 2017, it received rave review after rave review, and scored well enough to get an 88 aggregate score on MetaCritic. Among indie games, only Undertale and What Remains of Edith Finch scored slightly higher in 2017. Even among big budget games of 2017, only Persona 5 had notably higher review scores.

Nex Machina is a slick twin-stick shooter for 1 or 2 players, rooted in old school sensibilities, but with all the pop of a modern title. People who love games like Robotron, Smash TV, and Geometry Wars should definitely take note. In fact, Eugene Jarvis (of Robotron and Smash TV fame) was involved in the design of the game as a creative consultant. Personally I have a soft spot for Assault Heroes (Xbox 360, 2006), so I figured this game would be up my alley.

Best of all, digital downloads of this game are currently on sale on PS4 until March 5. It's regularly $19.99, but on sale for $5.99 to PS+ members this weekend (and $7.99 for non-members). Limited Run Games also released a physical copy of this game, which sold out and now sells on ebay for about $30-$40.

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As a sad side note, despite all the critical buzz, the game has not done well commercially and the developers say that they are moving away from producing future games like this, because consumers are not buying them.

Now, as for my personal thoughts.. Well, despite all the build up, I felt like the game is a bit overrated. The game is very well designed, and provides a great old-school challenge that will keep you trying over and over to progress. You die a lot, but it rarely feels unfair. One of the big problems, though, is that it's over all too quickly, as a playthrough will last about 45 minutes to 1 hour. The justification for that is that the game is mainly about getting high scores, so the focus is not on length. Personally though, I'd like a little more substance to a game, even if it's just an extra hour, or different play modes. Also, I haven't been motivated to play it again since my first playthrough a couple weeks ago, so I have to say that the replay value is not as high as you'd like for an arcade-style shooter. It just hasn't had any addictive pull on me to get me to play a second time. If I was scoring it, I'd give this game around a B- or C+.

Despite my reservations, critics overwhelming love this game, so consider giving it a shot, especially for twin-stick shooter fans. And especially while it's on sale for $5.99 this weekend. (I'd have no complaints at that price, but I spent more for the physical copy and was hoping for more.)

Any one else try this one or have thoughts?

ActRaiser
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Re: Nex Machina (PS4, PC) - (Robotron, Smash TV fans take note)

Postby ActRaiser » March 2nd, 2018, 4:09 pm

I LOVE games like this. Thanks for sharing. I'll be sure to check it out.

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Retro STrife
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Re: Nex Machina (PS4, PC) - (Robotron, Smash TV fans take note)

Postby Retro STrife » March 7th, 2018, 9:17 pm

I finally popped this in for a second time and figured I'd update. I still can't deny the expert polishing on this game, and I think it's a must play for diehards of the genre (Robotron and Smash TV fans). As for me, I have to stick to my prior thoughts. There is no mode depth here to keep me coming back, and playing for high score just doesn't do it for me. Despite the high quality of the gameplay, it's lacking the fun and replayability that I look for in a game. I feel like it's a C+ game, and I'm done with it and have no reason to play it again.

Still, this game is getting super high scores - 9's across the board - from most review sites, so worth a look if this is your thing. It's the type of game that I could easily see the Critic and others seeing as an A game.

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Rev
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Re: Nex Machina (PS4, PC) - (Robotron, Smash TV fans take note)

Postby Rev » March 8th, 2018, 7:13 pm

Thanks for posting this. I picked up the Limited Run version of this for the pS4. I really like this game and is a great co-op game. It is definitely a very high quality title and is great for those who like these types of games.

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Retro STrife
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Re: Nex Machina (PS4, PC) - (Robotron, Smash TV fans take note)

Postby Retro STrife » March 8th, 2018, 7:30 pm

Rev wrote:Thanks for posting this. I picked up the Limited Run version of this for the pS4. I really like this game and is a great co-op game. It is definitely a very high quality title and is great for those who like these types of games.


Now that you mention co-op, I haven't tried that, so that's the only reason I might try this game again. Unfortunately, there is no online co-op (local only), so it'll have to wait until I have the right person over to play it with. From the reviews I read, it seems like co-op isn't very fun unless you are playing with someone of similar skill level.


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