NEO NEO Review
The road to success is paved with failure, which is especially apparent in Sir Mr. Red’s new title NEO NEO. Death may be imminent, but is this journey worth the struggle?
NEO NEO Review
The goal of NEO NEO is as old as time: get to the next level and defeat enemies without dying. However, this is far easier said than done. Utilizing both the mouse and keyboard, players are constantly on the move, trying to outrun an ever-present, screen-clearing force called “The Flood.” Enemies pose a challenge too, with only a meager shield protecting you from a single hit. The environment is rife with disaster too, consisting of saw blades, spikes, and bullet-spewing traps. The developer certainly didn’t make things easy on the player.
There are a few things players can do to get ahead. The biggest tool in your repertoire is the warp ability, which allows you to steal an enemy’s weapon. This is absolutely crucial for high level play, as your default pea shooter requires multiple shots to take down even the most basic of enemies. Different enemies hold different weapons, and a properly timed warp can stun nearby foes. It can also recharge after successfully taking down other baddies, making chains commonplace. It’s fast, it’s fun, and it’s unique.
It’s just a shame that the levels often work against you. The world of NEO NEO is procedurally generated, which is both a blessing and a curse. Some may find joy in the fact that memorization will get you nowhere, but oftentimes the cramped level layout adds to the frustration. Perks can be unlocked that alleviate some of the burden, but wide open spaces would have made things a little easier in the long run.
A “successful” run that unlocks all perks will take around five minutes, but prepare to die multiple times before getting to that point. Starting out, our average run was around 10 seconds…which is unfortunately not an exaggeration. However, a simple press of the R key and a trip back through the door makes it easy to jump back into the fray. Global leaderboards are also present to keep players gunning for the high score.
It should be worth noting that the aesthetics in place here are second to none. Neon is in fashion, along with bright colors and an atmospheric soundtrack. The game does everything in its power to get players excited, and it does a great job at it.
NEO NEO is a breath of fresh air in the twin stick shooter space. Warping is a game changer, and its pick up and play nature makes it easy to jump in anytime.