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8.4

Power Strike review
Powerful shoot em up

Summary:



Strike with the awesome might of a ship with more power ups than testicles.
Power Strike is one of those games where you play it, get blasted to hell... and try again, hoping to make some progress, only to get whipped again. Yeah, it's one of those games. You know, those games that you just can't stop coming back to because you want to beat it. You want to show it who's boss! Inevitably, you do, but damn, this is going to be one long journey.

Shoot em up! Big time!
So yeah, it’s a shoot em up, and you should know the drill here – it’s going to contain some fast and intense action, involving you shooting everything that moves and everything that looks remotely like a threat. As per usual, you can get a free life through getting high enough scores. So if you’re on your last legs, you better shoot everything down and work on your dodging skills!

There really isn’t much that separates this from most of the other shoot em up games you would’ve played. Most of them are hard as tits from the get go, though I will say that Power Strike wastes very little time in bombarding you with a lot of enemy ships. You have to be ready almost the instant you turn on the Master System to shoot everything, so make sure that trigger finger is itchy as hell. To help, have some itching powder by your side. Always helped me. You could hold the button, but that’s slower than just smashing the button over and over again, and trust me, you’ll need to be shooting as fast as you can. It’s merciful enough to give you infinite continues, but that’s about it.



POWER UP!
As usual, you have a range of secondary weapons, though there are some differences. For one, some of them – the default one, in particular – goes in the same direction that you’re holding on the d-pad, and considering its rectangular design, it’ll be going all over the place. You won’t get a clear shot with some of them unless you know how to cheat death a million times in a row, so just wait until you get one that just shoots forward. Second, there’s ammo for them. Oh joy, ammo. You can get some extra ammo on the way, though knowing you, you’ll probably be too busy fending off enemy ships towards the end, and running out of ammo is a bummer, since you’ll be stuck to your weak primary weapon, and an out of control default secondary weapon.

Other than that, it’s the usual stuff – you can strengthen them up by collecting the same power up more than twice in a row. You can also strengthen up your primary weapon through P icons, though the secondary weapons are ultimately more useful, since they destroy bullets and can tear through enemies faster. With that said, it’s a nice touch to give both attacks, when together, more punch.

Visual massacre.
Each of the ships look pretty cool, as do the environments you fly over. They manage to keep your eyes looking, though they’re just good enough to deserve a quick look before you realize you’re about to get shot. The only problem you’ll encounter is the amount of lag this game carries with it. You’ll be assaulted by many ships, and unfortunately, the game slows down a lot due to this.

Catch that tune!
The soundtrack is your usual shoot em up fare – fast, and heart-racingly awesome. Each song manages to get you into the mood for some intense shooting action, and they also manage to stick to your head like moths on a screen. The sound effects are a bit “meh”, you won’t really care for them, but the explosion sound is more like two spring tracks with a bit of bass, which sounds weird when you think about it.

Power, baby.
Power Strike is a pretty damn good shoot em up. It should really satisfy those who are looking for more shoot em ups to play. It’s fast, it’s intense, it’s difficult, and it’s a hell of a ride.


Gameplay: 8/10
It showcases the usual intense shoot em up action you'll be used to. If you're expecting to at least stand a chance in the first level, consider yourself screwed. There, you will be screwed harder than a 2 dollar hooker on her first night. Legions of ships will rain on your parade, and blow you into millions of pieces before you can even get your first free life. It gets harder from there, too. Basically, it's fun, it's intense, but it's a real hard son of a bitch.
Controls: 8.5/10
Really annoying trying to control the default secondary attack, since it can go all over the place. The worthwhile solution is to pick up another power up and don't die. Other than that, the controls are solid. Another case of some slick movement controls and a case of molesting the primary fire button.
Graphics: 8/10
Looks nice, some nice usage of colors, you know the drill - ace quality visuals. But damn, it lags like crazy when there are a number of enemies on screen at once.
Sound: 9/10
Some catchy as AIDS songs constitute the bulk of the soundtrack here. No doubt you'll love them long after play.

Overall: 8.5/10

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