Indie Corner: FullBlast

The Wii U is a great console but it lacks some support. A lot of gamers aren’t pleased with the lack of third party support and we can’t actually blame them. Lucky for Wii U gamers, Indie games are getting more common on the console. EnjoyUp and UFO Crash Games worked together to bring a Shmup (shoot ‘em up) to the console. Not many of those are found in the eShop,so let’s find out if it’s any good.

Defend the Earth

FullBlast features a classic ‘defend the Earth from the aliens’ theme, so the story isn’t special at all. You’re not playing this game for its story but for the gameplay of course. Once you start flying around you’ll notice that this is a very traditional Shmup. You have to take down as many enemies as possible on your screen. Killing enough enemies unlocks upgrades that hover around on the field. By flying over those, you’ll activate them.
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Don’t expect a lot of innovation in those upgrades. Most upgrade your weapon by adding bullets and more powerful bullets. It’s something we see in almost every shoot ‘em up so it’s no surprise to see them in FullBlast as well. Aside of weapon upgrades you’ll also be able to pick up an extra life or power attack from time to time. Again, nothing really new.

Panned camera

Important to know however is that this games plays in a panned isometric view. You can compare it to Nanostray if you want; it’s basically the same. It means that the game cuts away the edges of the screen and forces you to play in a vertical field. It’s a modern hype in the shooter development scene but not everybody will enjoy it. Since the screen has been cut, you aren’t able to dodge everything as smooth as you would. You’ll never get the amount of free space you really need to make your flight fluent and enjoyable.

It might frustrate some but most will see it as an extra challenge. As said before, the panned camera limits your movements but that’s what makes the game more difficult. A good shoot ‘em up isn’t supposed to be easy and FullBlast is no exception.

Enemies and bosses

The game continuously spawns a great amount of enemies on the screen; taking them down is hard from the start. There’s a lot going on at once, you really need to manoeuver your plane in a very chaotic world. Dodging enemies and their bullets isn’t always that easy. At some points the screen will be filled with danger, dodging all of this will demand skill.

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Aside of regular enemies, the game also features boss battles. Those have the right difficulty level and are fun to take down. The only problem we have with those is the design. The design of the enemies is very generic and lacks a soul. Enemies and bosses look very low budget and that’s truly a shame. If this game had another more original setting with creative enemies, it would have been so much better.

It’s generic after a while

The enemies aren’t the only generic things about the game. The entire game gets a bit too generic after a while. Sure, you’re flying over different environments but your task will always remain the same. The game really suffers from the lack of variation and innovation. If you want to enjoy it for a longer time, we advice you not to play it in long sessions.

To make things more exciting, there’s a co-op mode as well. In here you can fly together on the same map, taking down enemies as a team. This mode is fun for sure but can’t be played for too long to stay enjoyable. Aside of this extra mode the game also features online leaderboards and achievements. Both are fun but no real improvements to the core gameplay.

FullBlast verdict

The good:The bad
+ Classic Shoot ’em up– Too Generic
+ Good level of difficulty– Screen cropping
+ Co-op mode– Too traditional

FullBlast is a classic Shmup and it’s great to see one of those in the eShop. It’s a shame the developers went for such a traditional approach, resulting in a rather generic experience. It does what it has to do and the level of difficulty is just right but it lacks some soul and identity. It’s not a bad game at all but it’s not as innovating as we hoped.

7/10

Tested on Nintendo Wii U