Shattered Planet is a rogue-lite game brought to life by Kitfox Games, a rather recent Canadian indie group. This is their first project and if Moon Hunters is as complex as this one then this small group is headed for stardom.
I hate having to use Super Meat Boy as a comparison term, so let’s use Escape from Space Shredder instead. Shattered Planet is basically your worst nightmare of exploration games. It will chew you up, spit you out, and then stomp on you for good measure. There is no death counter but, to compensate, there is an amusing extra when you die that I’ll speak of further down.
What is this?
As I said earlier, it is an exploration rogue-lite game where you play the role of a clone, be it organic or robotic, in an endless quest to find the reason why the Blight spreads so quickly throughout the galaxy, touching everything except your shattered home world, Earth. Your clones will find this out or die trying. And believe me, die they shall. To aid you, however, you have a myriad of equipment at your disposal, from helmets and swords to pets and orbital strikes. Not only that, you can also get in touch with the local wildlife… and kill it. Mostly because almost damn near everything is out to kill you.
But don’t fret. Dying isn’t that bad. After all, you’re a clone, so death is the beginning of something new. A new cloned body, that is safe and sound, back aboard your ship and ready to be teleported down to the planet, once more.
And when you do die, the screen is filled with lovely RIP messages, too numerous and hilarious to begin speaking of them. Anything you do in the game affects these messages and most are definitely worth spending time finding.
The game feels a lot more at home on a mobile platform (iOS or Android) than on the PC which makes sense considering the game is also available on those platforms, for free (however, to compensate for the lack of a price tag, the mobile version has micro-transactions).
Movement and combat are turn-based – for every square of map you step on, the rest of the map moves as well. If you don’t move, neither does anything else, unless you’re skipping a turn, accomplished simply by clicking on the square you are on.
Truth be told, I still haven’t found a winning strategy to cruise through the maps. The main idea is to simply explore as much as possible and move to the teleporter exit without letting the Blight or wildlife kill you. And every one of these randomly generated maps is every bit as brutal as it is rewarding.
Graphics and Sound
A very simplistic style for a simple, yet mind-blowing game. Detailed enough for you to make out perfectly what is happening on your screen, even if the platform you’re on is swarming with activity, yet simple enough that your PC doesn’t explode.
As for the sounds, the ambiance is very soothing, quite the contrast to the apocalyptic scenario you play in and the event noises (which include combat) are just as well done as the rest. You know the game is about death when sound is treated so casually that it doesn’t make a big event about it.
The game is hard. Incredibly so. More than jumping over your own leg whilst drunk off your rockers. And, despite the flash looks, it is immensely fun and gratifying. Even dying constantly is not so bad when you get to see those funny death messages. Definitely worth every penny of hilarity and then some more just to discover any new possible iteration of them. Surely there is a description that fits this game, one that brutally murders you by laughter? In any case, I must go. My clones need me.
- Endless randomly generated maps.
- Hysterically accurate death messages.
- Highly amusing and defying gameplay.
- Endless death.
- Brutal violence in lower levels.
- Did I mention the death, yet?
OS: Windows XP
Memory: 2 GB RAM
Graphics: X1950 Pro, 7900 GT. 1024 x 768 or larger resolution
DirectX: Version 9.0c
Hard Drive: 650 MB available space