Well, folks, it happened again: I was completely blown away by yet another indie gem! Xeodrifter by Renegade Kid is a title I picked up on Steam while on vacation to the Oregon Coast this last Memorial Day weekend! However, I didn’t get the chance to play it until I got back home!
After settling back into my loose interpretation of a “routine”, I plugged in my XBox 360 controller and spent a good hour with Xeodrifter. From what I understood from the game’s description, I was going to be in for some planetary exploration to find the parts necessary to fix the character’s damaged engine.
Little did I realize that what I was getting into was a healthy dose of gaming awesomeness that hearkens back to great titles like Super Metroid, Blaster Master and Mega Man!
After the totally epic, minimalistic initial cutscene, your character has a choice between four planets to explore. There’s no real pressure to pick one planet over the other, but I selected the green planet first for my initial playthrough, because “green” = noob, right? Once you select a planet, you have to “beam down to it”, Star Trek-style, and then, it’s ON!
Enemies range from flying fish to wall-jumping Jigglypuff wannabes. There’s even endless respawning enemies near boss rooms where you can farm for life!
Speaking of bosses, I’ve only encountered one type of boss creature thus far, and he looks like a cross between an octopus and a triceratops! However, don’t let its cutesy-pie appearance deceive you, as his attacks patterns change rapidly between encounters and during! And if you think he’s difficult the first time in, wait until you have to plane shift (more on this later) during later encounters to avoid his relentless onslaught of charging, jumping and fire breathing!
This guy will test your skills…and your patience!
In the hour that I’ve put into this title, I’ve also discovered at least two mini-bosses: a giant snail and a flying, pickle-looking thing! These guys have a fairly predictable attack pattern, but can cause serious havoc if your timing’s off. They can both take some serious damage, and there’s no real way to rush through killing them! If you’re low on health, it’s probably best to make a quick getaway!
Another aspect that Xeodrifter has in droves is item collection. Your character has the ability to upgrade their weapon and health through collecting upgrade points! These are scattered throughout the environs, and some are not readily apparent. I even found one by accident after running into what I thought was a wall!
Other items that I found are a submarine (your character floats in water without it), and a plane shifter (allows you to alternate between the foreground and background). After only an hour of exploration, I haven’t even come close to finding all of the items, and I honestly can’t wait to find more!
Should You Buy It?
Damn right you should! If you grew up on games during the 8-bit and 16-bit eras, there is much that will feel familiar, yet fresh, when you delve into the world of Xeodrifter. For newer entrants into the platforming realm, this game will offer up enough unlockables and rewarding gameplay to keep you coming back for more!
The graphics are crisp and relevant without feeling gimmicky, the controls are exceptionally responsive, the gameplay is highly rewarding, and the ambient music invokes a sense of exploration and curiosity.
With current availability on Steam and Nintendo eShop, and future releases announced for the Xbox One, PS4 and Vita, there’s no reason not to check this one out if you’re into Metroidvania titles! Still on the fence? Check out the trailer below and make up your own mind! I’ll be over here, getting my Xeodrifter on, HARD!
Lumpz the Clown OUT!
Ooh, the FEELS are REAL!