We Are Doomed Review

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Title: We Are Doomed
Developer: Vertex Pop
Platform: PlayStation Vita
Game Type: Vita
Download: 29 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download

EU Availability: Digital Download
PSTV Support: 
Yes

There are a lot of things that you can take points off when you review games.  The story isn’t good.  There is no plot.  Lag.  Long Load Times.  Needless Repetition.  No background music.  The list goes on and on.  This is pretty black and white in some cases, but not all.  Every so often, a reviewer will find a game that is very difficult to review, because it’s not black-and-white.  Because it has gray areas that are difficult to tackle.

Let’s say you get to a game that has no story.  Your first thought is to take a point off because there wasn’t effort put in to make a story.  However, as you research the game, you find out it has no story on purpose.  The developer went to not making a story because they wanted an experience that wouldn’t need a story.  They wanted something that didn’t have any story.  Would it still be fair to take points off for no story?

I have thought long and hard about this regarding today’s review.  Even now, I’m still not entirely certain I’m clear on this, but I’ve gotten some ideas.  So, let’s get started.  Here is my review of the twin-stick shooter, We Are Doomed!

Story

Due to this game having no story, this section shall remain blank.

Gameplay

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We Are Doomed is an arcade-style twin-stick shooting game.  The game doesn’t have a lot of elements from other genres.  It is quite simply a twin-stick shooter played in a very arcade-like sense.

The basic run-down of the game is that there are two different game modes you can play: Wave Mode and Endless Mode.  In Wave Mode, you’re tackling enemies that come in progressively-harder stages with checkpoints every ten stages all the way through Stage 30.  Endless Mode is a little different, as it is just shooting endless hordes of enemies at you, having you duke it out with them as long as you can without dying.  As the game suggests, Wave Mode is for beginners and Endless is for expert players.

Gameplay has you in a top-down environment, like most Twin Stick Shooters.  You are a lone ship wandering a 2D plane armed with nothing but a beam-like weapon to fend off hordes of enemies coming at you.  When each wave spawns, enemies will spawn that you need to take out with your beam weapon (that honestly looks more like a flamethrower) to make the next wave spawn and move forward.

Enemy types will vary, and others will not show up until you get further into the game.  Some enemies just wander aimlessly around the stage, waiting to be vaporized.  Others will have homing capabilities and work with one another to rush around you.  As you play the game, you’ll also have objects flying around you have to avoid while fighting enemies and even enemies that aren’t part of that wave that will endlessly respawn around the stage for you to fight alongside the ones you need to go to the next wave.

Fighting enemies is pretty simple.  You have your main beam weapon and then the Super-Beam.  As you fight enemies, they will drop energy you can pick up.  After getting enough energy, you gain access to the Super-Beam for a short period of time.  Once you execute this, the beam weapon will have an exponential increase in power and range, making large hordes very easy to manage.  This only lasts about 10 seconds or so, though.

Really, that’s all there is to it.  You only have one weapon and one super-weapon.  In all honesty, the game doesn’t have a whole lot of depth to it.  The game does have some difficulty to it, but it’s pretty easy to adjust to it.  I’d gotten up to Wave 21 of the 30 total waves in less than an hour of picking up the game for the first time.  I’m not saying it’s easy, but it’s not hardcore like other twin-stick shooting games.

As far as length, I’d say this isn’t a factor you should even worry about.  We Are Doomed was clearly made to be a quick-play game that you don’t power-play to finish to completion.  An expert could beat the game in as little as 30 minutes, but I’d give it at least a couple hours for Wave Mode if you’re familiar with the genre.  But, again, this isn’t something you power-play to complete.  It’s something you boot up when you’re wanting something nice and quick to play and enjoy.

Controls

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There are virtually no controls to the game at all.  First of all, there aren’t any special controls on the PlayStation TV.  You also don’t need to worry about touch controls.  Things are pretty simple, just as they are for the rest of the game.

You move around on the stage with the Left Analog Stick and shoot your beam with the Right Analog Stick.  Finally, you can pause with the Start button and enable the Super-Beam with the R trigger.  Apart from this, there really isn’t anything else, control-wise.  D-Pad and face buttons in menus, but nothing as far as gameplay is concerned.

Presentation

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Visually, I think this game looks quite interesting.  It has a very “retro” look to its visuals, and everything flows over quite well.  The only problem with the presentation is the lack of other environments.  Through all 30 waves, you’re going to be on the same background you were on during Wave 1.  It’s not a huge deal, but it feels there should have been some more variety in environments and not just one for the whole game.

Performance is really nice for a Vita game.  You can boot to the title screen in as little as 5 seconds (How many Vita games have ever been able to do that?) and there is virtually no wait time between the stages.  Some may complain about the mandatory PSN Sign-In when you first boot the game for Online Leaderboards, but it only happens once, so it’s not a big deal.

Summary

We Are Doomed is a very dramatic title for a dramatic-looking game.  On the downside, the game doesn’t really have a lot of depth to it, be it in weapon variety or environment variety.  If you’re looking for a non-hardcore twin-stick shooter for quick play sessions, though, I can’t really say no.  Despite not having a huge amount of depth, it’s a very fun game. 

8/10

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