Friday, May 31, 2013

First Impressions: Moon (DS)

No, this isn't a DS take on the 2009 film of the same name, which actually came out in the same year.  Moon is an science-fiction FPS game developed by Renegade Kid and published by Mastiff in the US and Gamebridge in Europe.

So yes, Moon.  Just Moon, nothing to do with Harvest Moon or anything to do with the Blue Moon people, but the Blue Moon Agave Nectar Ale is quite delicious.

But back to Moon.

I started this game back in March and I've since put in just over 9 hours, I only have three stages left and I'm just now putting down my "First Impressions."  I've been playing on "Normal" out of three total difficulty levels; the others being, surprise-surprise, Easy and Hard.  The game controls very well and I have absolutely no issues playing it on the 3DS.  Actually, seeing as how the game originally came out on the DS and I'm playing it on the 3DS, which has the joystick/pad-thing, I find that moving/strafing/looking is very smooth.  The only thing, as far as controls go, is that because my hands are somewhat large, I have to rest my left hand (which is the one holding the system) against my knee or a table when firing (with the L button) so my hand doesn't cramp up, but I'll put that one all on me and my man hands.

As far as the storyline, the year is 2058 and in that future we're able to send astronauts to the moon armed with a super assault rifle, which is the name of your main weapon.  I feel that's about as cheesy as the game gets.  Depending on how serious you need a science fiction FPS that takes place on a newly discovered subterranean "alien" base on the moon inhabited by aggressive/defensive robots.  The majority of the game is spent going through hallways and rooms shooting at and being shot at by a defensive security system "manned" by different types of robots.

I should also point out that your main weapon, the Super Assault Rifle has unlimited ammunition.  Regardless of the difficulty setting, you can hold down the fire button for the entire game, never letting up and never run out of ammo.  I wanted to get that out of the way because I know some people might be turned off by that.  I happen to be one of those people, but in this case, I don't mind at all.  Yes, I am a hypocrite.  The point is, yes, your gun will never run out of ammunition, but doesn't mean you're going to be hitting everything you fire at.  The recoil on the SAR is about as bad as the fire spread on a Klobb.  I still use the SAR out of the other five guns that I have as I tend to horde all my special gun ammunition for the boss fights.

One other thing that, at least I feel, sets Moon apart from other FPS is that you are in control of a Remote Access Droid.  When controlling RAD, you command a small roving droid about the size of a shoe box and "armed" with a shock cannon of sorts.  The cannon doesn't damage any of the enemies, but it does stun them.  What's the point then?  Using the RAD, you're able to access areas that you in your bulky astronaut's outfit cannot, so you can then open force fields for your human counterpart can then pass through.  I've actually gotten quite attached to the RAD and I often think of it as it's own "person" and not a machine that you're controlling.  One nice thing, is that any damage the RAD takes is immediatly "healed" upon picking it back up.

The "one," criticism cited on Wikipedia, is that the game lacks a multiplayer.  That's a reason not to buy/play/give it a whirl?  Could there be multiplayer here?  Sure.  I guess.  This reaction, of course, is coming from someone who doesn't really look for multiplayer-ness when I buy games.  It's not something that I need in a game, but if it's there and there are others who want to play, sure I'll give it a go, but it's not even close to being a deal breaker.

I don't know what else to say.  Moon is a really fun game which happens to be from a company that I really like.  Some of the bosses are a bloody pain in the ass though (again, I'm playing on Normal difficulty and I would like to think that I don't totally suck since I made it "that" far).  The point is, is that if you have a DS/3DS and enjoy FPS', pick up Moon and an added bonus for you the consumer, is that it's pretty decent price wherever you look, some places will obviously be less than others.


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