Oftentimes, launch games get lost months out of that initial window. Usually, the games are throwaways that are meant to give developers more time to create absolute masterpieces that showcase the new systems power. The PlayStation 4 is attempting to change all of that by rolling out a few powerful, digital-only games that are PS4 exclusive and can only be picked up on the PSN. And for PlayStation Plus members, they are absolutely free.
Resogun (also presented as RESOGUN) is one of those games. Developed by Housemarque, the creators of the Super Stardust games, Resogun is a throwback space shooter, played horizontally in cylindrical levels, where the object is simply to “Save the Last Humans.” There are three different ships to choose from, each with their own strengths and weaknesses, and five levels/worlds to conquer. The enemies are many and the action can get insane in no time. Luckily, each ship is equipped with bombs that can clear the entire screen in a sweep, boosts to escape hairy situations, and an overdrive feature that renders the ship invulnerable–turning it into a weapon itself.
There are four different skill levels, ranging from Rookie to Master, and each level has a dedicated leaderboard for high scores. There is also an online co-op component, but sadly, no ad-hoc two-player mode.
Each level of the game is broken down into phases that culminate in a boss battle. The key/goal is to keep shooting enemies to get your score multiplier up as high as possible. A high multiplier, especially during the boss battles, can really make a mark on the world leaderboard. The multiplier resets with death, or if you stop shooting stuff for a set amount of time, so you have constant incentive to shoot and kill as much as possible.
During the levels, certain ships are designated as “keepers” and if they are destroyed, it releases one of the few remaining humans in each level so that can be picked up and rescued. As if 50 enemy ships, 200 slow moving “bullets” and more of each on the way wasn’t enough, now you have to save a human before the invaders recapture them. To put it bluntly, the game can get intense.
And that is the sheer beauty of it all. Resogun is intense, fast-paced and gorgeous to look at. This is particularly evident at the end of a completed level when the city blows up. Each sprite and pixel pops off the screen and the graphic power of the PS4 is put into motion.
Resogun utilizes the speaker in the DualShock 4 controller to alert you when keepers are on the board so you can target them, and of course the game can be played with remote play on the PS Vita and the share feature lets you post full video of your session.
Resogun is a great game, whether it was free or not, and whether it was on disc or digital, it doesn’t matter. It is highly addictive, fun to play, and gorgeous to look at. The play controls are simple and smooth, and calling Resogun one of the best launch games for the PS4 is not hyperbole. It’s fully realized and fully supported and a blast to play any way you shake it. If you have a PS4 you must have this game.
Resogun is a PS4 launch title available exclusively via PSN, and it is free to download and play for all PlayStation Plus members.