Rigid Force Alpha doesn't have checkpoints, but on any difficulty above easy, all power-ups are instantly lost upon death. This feeds into the mindset where any lives beyond the first one may as well be window dressing. As with Irem's 1987 classic, the player-ship can be equipped with pods that block bullets from the front, rear, or sides.
With there being so many games on the market to choose from, it can be a daunting task to find out just which ones suit your needs. However, the shmup genre is one that doesn’t typically find itself in the spotlight all too often and so, the choices players have aren’t as varied as the other more prominent genres. This brings us to Rigid Force Alpha, an indie shmup title that breathes life back into the genre with its hand-crafted 3D visuals and fast-paced gameplay, making it the suggested title for any fan of the shmup side-scroller genre. What to Expect. Much like any shmup title whether it be past or present, the premise is quite simple in that you must try and stay alive for as long as possible, avoiding incoming enemy fire and eliminating challenging bosses along the way.
Of course you can’t have a shmup without its upgradable weapons, and Rigid Force Alpha gives you the option to increase their firepower and collect special energy orbs, unleashing a powerful shot to end the hordes of enemies flying toward you. The most important to note, and perhaps what makes shmup titles so enthralling, lies solely in the challenge.
Rigid Force Alpha puts your reaction abilities to the test, only to see just how fast you’re able to fend off enemy gunfire, maximize damage on the fly and rack up high scores simultaneously in one go. It definitely isn’t easy, but with enough practice you’ll be able to tackle any obstacle that comes your way, and with Rigid Force Alpha allowing you to replay maps via the Arcade Mode, the replay value just gets higher and higher. Visually speaking, Rigid Force Alpha uses hand-crafted 3D visuals to really help the game pop in its own way.
Unlike the conventional shmup that tends to teeter towards the more retro look to appeal to the nostalgia junkies, Rigid Force Alpha tries to maintain a more modern approach by keeping the visuals clean, still providing the same thrilling shmup experience that many of us are familiar with. It’s by no means breathtaking, but the 3D visuals do bring things to life more and add a little depth to the gameplay experience. The UI is simple and well presented, which is great since most of your focus should be planted on the action in front of you, rather than a screen full of options that become too distracting. The menu screen is also minimal, and its use of simple colors is a nice treat.
Perhaps the most inviting feature of Rigid Force Alpha lies in its choice of music, which really compliments the futuristic theme the game appeals to. The mixture of electro-style sounds really adds a lot of hype to the gameplay experience, and often times we found ourselves losing not because of the enemies but because the music had us bobbing our heads and got distracted.
Maybe it’s because we’re big fans of the electro and synthwave genre that it appealed to us more, but whether you’re a fan or not we feel the music certainly helps to set the tone and adds more impact overall. Music enthusiasts will fall for it! In Rigid Force Alpha you have the Story Mode, which you can dive straight into and is more or less the main mode of the game. We say main mode because this is where you’ll spend most of your time, since it will help you to unlock the other modes in the game such as Arcade Mode, and through there you can explore other areas of the game. The premise itself is simple: shoot enemies and avoid death as much as possible.
However, it’s really not that simple once you’re thrown into the fray and need to be on your best behavior, since enemies really don’t give you time to sit there and think through your decisions. Everything is in the moment, and so you’ll need to be very focused while playing in order to avoid any unnecessary obstacles that may pose a threat to your life. In a way, Rigid Force Alpha feels roguelike because once you get a game over you have to start back from the first stage, which can feel frustrating especially when you’ve worked so hard to get so far.That of course is where the replay value comes into play, because even when you lose and feel salty over it, you find yourself coming back to it because you’re so adamant on clearing it all. That’s the feeling we enjoy with playing shmups, since they always encourage you to go beyond your limitations and find solutions to what killed you before.
It’s a game of constant growth, and in some strange way it teaches you how to be more patient in your approach, learning to take things slowly rather than just simply rushing through. Even for someone who has dabbled with shmups before, Rigid Force Alpha still pushes you to think carefully and not become too lax in your approach, because even one small error in judgement and you lose a life. Overall, Rigid Force Alpha is an enjoyable experience though it certainly felt like it ended all too quickly. While the main mode was able to occupy our time and keep us on our toes, it didn’t last as long as we’d expected it to, which was a little disheartening.
Maybe we’re spoiled and are so used to the constant influx of new boss battles and stages to overcome via titles like Raiden, Radiant Silvergun, and R-Type, but we felt more could’ve been added to give more oomph to the overall experience. Arcade mode alleviates that in a way, but more variety would’ve certainly provided a more robust experience. The great soundtrack really makes up for it though, because it truly brings the game to life in a nice way, and who doesn’t like great music? Maybe a patch down the road to add in more stages would be viable but be that as it may, Rigid Force Alpha is still an enjoyable experience for any fan of the shmup genre to pick up. We suggest any old-school junkie of the genre to grab this game and play, because you’ll totally enjoy it.
Rigid Force Alpha definitely tries to maintain a very fundamental approach, and we guess it’s to be more inviting to players to dive into this genre. While that idea is pleasing to some, the more hardcore players may find things to be too short in thrill and would want more out of the title, especially since you’re paying around $20 for it. Be that as it may, we hope you found the review to be an insightful one and let us know your thoughts in the comments below!As always, for all things sweet, with news straight from Japan, be sure to keep it locked here on Honey’s Anime.
Over the years, this critic has played a lot of shmups. It's impossible to determine an exact number, but let's just say its north of 400, at least. Certainly the burning question on everyone's mind is 'Don't you ever get tired of them?'
Surprisingly enough, no, not at all. There's just something so primal and satisfying about a genre where the players face impossible odds. The fact that the difference between life and death can be measured in pixels is part of what makes STGs so consistently appealing. They are demanding and sometimes infuriating, but reaching beyond one's perceived limits is what being human is all about.What's also great is that while almost all of these games follow the same basic guidelines, they maintain a sense of identity. One doesn't approach R-Type in the same way they would Dodonpachi, Darius, or even Pulstar.
Although two shmups might look and play out in a similar fashion, there tend to be scenarios, nuances, or other qualities that are unique to both titles. Of course, it's hard to deny that there are also quite a few clones and outright stinkers floating around, but that tends to be the case with any remotely popular genre.Now then, does Rigid Force Alpha capture that same magic that has sustained STGs for so long? Before going any further, it's important to point out that this isn't a particularly bad title. It showcases an understanding of the fundamentals. The three difficulty settings appropriately account for varying levels of skill and experience. Each of the six stages offers its own set of obstacles to contend with. The most essential aspects, the controls and mechanics, are dependable.
There's never a worry about losing control or dying from bullets that don't even touch the ship. Skydiving simulator roblox how to glide up. Oh, and its compelling entertainment.
Players will be glued to their screen as they weave their way around crushing walls and in-between scores of bullets, all the while blasting enemies to smithereens.Undoubtedly, anyone who has played a single genre for a long time will notice the reuse of certain concepts. At times, this familiarity is reassuring. It's comforting to know exactly what a game is trying to accomplish. However, consider the proverb 'familiarity breeds contempt' for a moment. The more well-versed the player is in a particular genre, the more likely they will notice flaws. When a title is far too similar to every other one that came before it, that comforting feeling is lost.
Instead, the person holding the controller starts thinking 'Why am I playing this new game, when it's the same or slightly worse than something I already played before?' R-Type and Gradius are shmups that feature a checkpoint system. When the R-9 or Vic Viper is destroyed, all of their power-ups are immediately stripped away and the player is kicked back to a previous checkpoint. Under certain circumstances, this can be incredibly hard to recover from. As opposed to the two genre-defining classics, Darius 2 doesn't have a checkpoint system, but once all of the power-ups are lost, that game becomes practically unwinnable. Speaking solely from a personal perspective, all three STGs have been the subject of a lot of rage. It's an era that's probably better off staying in the past.Rigid Force Alpha doesn't have checkpoints, but on any difficulty above easy, all power-ups are instantly lost upon death.
This feeds into the mindset where any lives beyond the first one may as well be window dressing. As with Irem's 1987 classic, the player-ship can be equipped with pods that block bullets from the front, rear, or sides.
Once those shields are gone, recovering from a death becomes a lot harder than it needs to be. Granted, losing all of the additional firepower also hurts, but at least the default cannon is fairly strong, so boss-fights don't take an absurd amount of time. A bullet-absorbing blade is also available, although its range is pitiful and requires a lot of energy to use.The situations that players must contend with are far too familiar. There is both an ice stage and a fire stage.
The desert wastelands hide vicious creatures that rush anything that comes close, sort of like the gougers from R-Type. During the final stage, spheroids appear from out of nowhere to collide with the player. The boss battles are where it starts to get ridiculous. The first boss seems to be the cousin of R-Type III's first boss. The second boss is eerily reminiscent of Gomander, only it's been turned 90 degrees.
Then there's the boss of that aforementioned fire stage, which looks remarkably reminiscent, perhaps out of one of the Gradius releases.Admittedly, coming up with wholly original ideas is pretty darned tough. However, this shmup is far too referential.
It doesn't introduce new spins on old concepts, nor does it try to go in fresh and creative directions. Maybe instead of CORE, the antagonist could be an army of giant robot birds. One of the bosses would be called 'Stringy Struthio.' It's an ostrich that shoots rockets out of its neck. Yeah, original ideas are tough, and original good ideas are harder still. The point is that while this title has all of the basic elements in place, there's not enough to set itself apart from its inspiration.On the bright side, the additional features are quite well done.
The arcade mode allows players to tackle any stage. Alongside the threats posed by both enemy forces and the environment, pilots must also account for the scoring system. There's a multiplier bonus that rises with the acquisition of green bits, which are left behind when enemies are destroyed. Furthermore, each stage is filled with bombs to destroy and survivors that need rescuing. Accomplishing both of the secondary objectives will result in a lot of bonus points. There's also a Boss Rush mode, with the goal being to defeat every major fiend in as short a time as possible. Online leaderboards are also available, which is always welcome.There are a couple other minor issues worth noting.
Main weapons are designated by both their colour and shot-type. The blue shot is narrow and does exceptional damage, while the green shot bounces off of walls to cover a wide area. The red shot, which fires in a spread, is by far the weakest of the three. There's no benefit in holding onto it over either of the other shot-types. During the fourth stage, there's an instance where two massive lasers hide the arrival of an enemy swarm attacking from behind, and that's just plain cheap.Cubed3 Rating. 6/10 GoodDespite being functionally solid and enjoyable, Rigid Force Alpha's lack of identity is very apparent. Occasional cameos and background references are fine, but cloned enemies and bosses is going too far.
The overly familiar environs and scenarios aren't going to excite genre veterans, either. While it may be difficult to create something that has never been seen before, it has to be easier to create something that isn't seen very often. At least when it comes to features, there isn't much to complain about. Alongside a slew of achievements for thrill-seekers is an arcade mode with a lot of replay value. Even if this shmup isn't as imaginative as it could be, at least its heart is in the right place.