Thursday, August 26, 2010

Video game number two hundred and forty five: Schizoid

Video game review number two hundred and forty five in my 365 Games in 365 Days project is "Schizoid"

According to a screen that comes up just before you quit the game and return to the dashboard: "Schizoid is the most co-op game ever"

They're not lying.

This morning I woke up a little early, and despite the fact I have a huge stack of games I could be playing for my little project here, I decided to lie down on the couch and play some good old Geometry Wars 2 on the big screen TV. I had a craving to play just for fun, and that game always delivers.

This isn't the first time I've squandered precious gaming hours either. Just last night I played some Split Second. Sure, I've already reviewed it, and it didn't earn me any progress towards my 365 games this year, but I'm trying not to forget that sometimes it's fun to play a video game because you actually want to, and not because you need to for some insane project.

Why did I bring up Geometry Wars? Because this no Geometry Wars.

Schizoid is a twin stick shooter, and oddly enough, in some modes, each stick controls a different ship. Crazy right?

Here's the premise: This game features two ships, a red one and a blue one. The blue one can only destroy blue enemies, and the red one can only destroy red enemies. In concept, it's simple enough, but obviously, this means you're going to have to work together to clear screens filled with multi-colored enemies. When you play by yourself, you helm the blue ship, and the computer controls the red one. The computer sucks ass as a partner, so it's easy to die when playing alone.

Alternatively, you can choose to play a mode where you control both ships at the same time by yourself. One stick controls the blue ship, and the other controls the red. This is incredibly hard, especially if you're one of those people who can't pat your tummy and rub your head at the same time. It's VERY easy to get confused and crash one of your ships by accident.

I think this game is designed to ONLY be played with two players, either on two separate controllers, or working together with one person on each stick of a single controller. I don't feel like I can give it an decent review until I've at least tried playing it this review is to be continued.

Update 8-29-10

It's been a few days, but today I convinced Heather to give this game a try with me. She wasn't very excited about it (not a fan of space combat games), but she played anyway. I told her we had to do about 5 levels to get an achievement.

"Five levels?" she said.
"Don't worry, they are really short levels". I assured her.

We beat the first one together with a gold medal (not too hard since there are only two enemies on this one). The second level was just as easy, but the third gave us a little trouble. By the time we made it to the fifth level, she was getting the hang of it, and in a couple of tries, we were both able to earn an achievement together. I always like those achievements the best.

Overall Score? As a single player game, this is a 6/10. It's a little better than average because it's interesting, nothing special...and it's something I'd suggest skipping. As a multiplayer game (co-op anyway), it's better...and I can imagine this being a really challenging game for two players who really enjoyed it. The trouble is, you have to meet that second person first. Seeing as how I don't enjoy it enough to go searching for someone who really enjoys the game, my score stands.

Achievements: I got two, one of them this evening with Heather.

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