Tachyon Project Review (Dual Stick Shooter)
Platforms: Xbox One (Later release on PC, PS 4, PS Vita and Wii U)
Developer: Eclipse Games
Publisher: Eclipse Games
Genre: Dual Stick Shooter
US Release: July 15th, 2015
Reviewed On: Xbox One
ith the release of Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions and Ultratron last year, the popular dual-stick shooter genre is well and alive and with Tachyon Project, developer Eclipse Games wants to not only add another clone to the table, but specifically add some new features and mix up the fun a bit.
You play as Ada, a program that is designed to hack into the most secure servers on Earth. While still in testing, you are set free into the internet. Ada is conscience and wants to find out what happened to her creators, or parents as she calls them. The action on-screen and the levels you have to complete, represent her journey of hacking and fighting programs to find out the truth.
In-between levels, the story is told with hand drawn comic-book-style cut scenes and gives you context to every new section of the game. As simple as it is, it’s a nice touch and a unique way to present a game in this genre. The Story mode consists of 10 levels, with 6 waves each.
The goal to completing a level is usually a set number of enemies you have to destroy or a timer. Time interestingly, is also your health. If you get hit, the timer loses a couple of seconds and results in your death if you run out of it. Naturally, the time goes up when you destroy enemies. This adds a fun and frantic nature to many of the more difficult waves as you constantly looking to perform as perfect as possible.
Another fresh addition are stealth missions that give you a break once you stop shooting. You can move around unnoticed until you start shooting again. Certain radar enemies can counter and still spot you if you get close. This will result in chaos again until you destroy these enemies. The chaos and effects on-screen sometimes even reach the point of complete disorientation and you just guess where your ship is.
Enemies in general have a wide variety of skills and movement patterns. With 30 enemy types, you will encounter everything from shields, mines and laser targets, to aggressive seekers, swarms and boss fights. The latter one also make a good use of the perk and weapons system and encourage you to try out new equipment until you find the one that works best.
This is also a bit of a double-edged sword, because just as with enemy types, the game gives you a good variety of different weapons and perks which are really fun to experiment around with, but you don’t have the option to switch them between waves. So you might have the wrong perk equipped for the boss at wave 6, which gives you no other option than to play all 6 waves again. Luckily there is always a way to fight your way through, but having the right equipment at the right time can make a huge difference. Especially with this big arsenal, it would have been nice to switch your ship parts after every wave.
Three local co-op challenges give you the option to play with 3 friends for high scores and climb up the leaderboard. The replay value in general is pretty decent since you can go for a better score in each wave with the better weapons and perks you unlocked throughout the game.
Tachyon Project never reaches the sometimes frustratingly high difficulty of other dual-stick-shooters, which is of course completely up to player preference. In my case i had hoped for a bit more challenging sections though. These minor complaints can’t take away from this well polished and fun experience though.
Achievements (not included in the final score)
The Achievement in Tachyon Project are as basic as they come. Completing each level and destroying a set number of certain enemies will mostly pop naturally during your playthrough. 1000 Gamerscore that is easily yours.
Tachyon Project knows the genre and skillfully adds its own flavour to it.
With an emphasis on ship customization and enemy variety, Tachyon Project brings some fresh wind into dual shooting and does this well polished and with confidence. Ship customization during waves could have encouraged experimentation a bit more and used the variety to its advantage. The difficulty is a bit on the soft side most of the time, but doesn’t hurt the experience. For the price of this is a great game to have for a short sessions or some challenge fun with three other friends.
Review code provided by Eclipse Games