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Rage Against The Machine – Nex Machina Reivew

Rage Against The Machine – Nex Machina Reivew

I didn’t know what exactly to expect when I first booted up Nex Machina. All I had heard of was Housemarque’s pedigree with twin stick shooters, and that was it. Fifteen minutes later, my hands were sweaty and shaking with excitement after having ran through the first area and beating the first boss. The music, the visuals, the fast-fluid twin stick controls, and the immensely frantic nature of the game had gotten its hooks in me.

You’re put right into the action 10 seconds after you hit go, and from then on you go from one level to the next clearing out waves of enemies while trying to get as many powerups as you can. There’s very little story told in the game itself, but here’s what I read in the official description –  Machines want humans dead. You’re here to rage against the machine. You rev up your futuristic sci-fi bike, put on your helmet, and are ready to go.

Housemarque had earlier mentioned taking inspirations from the works of Eugene Jarvis, who you might know from older arcade games like Defender and Smash TV. Housemarque roped in Mr. Jarvis for Nex Machina and his touch is omnipresent across the game.

The visuals are polished to a sheen with tons of particle effects, explosions and beautiful destruction. The game runs at a solid 60 FPS on consoles  and it hugely benefits from it. I never encountered a frustrating death because of any lags or hitches.That doesn’t mean I never died – I did, many times. The game, even on the easiest difficulty is no breeze. You’ll always be challenged, and weaving your way through enemies and laser bullets never got any less intense.

There’s a fair variety of enemy types and bosses, spread across the game’s 6 levels. You unlock levels by playing the arcade mode. As go go through levels, there are humans to save and secrets to discover. Some of the secrets are hidden away really cleverly, and it’s fun to replay levels and discover everything you can. Dashing through enemies, getting new power-ups and making your way to the boss never feels any less exciting even after hours of playing. The game also has local co-op and while having another player with you should make things easier, it also makes it all the more chaotic to keep track of everything happening on the screen. It’s definitely fun and adds a lot to the game.

The music was the main highlight for me, and it absolutely amps everything up to 11. While I play most games, especially those with no story, with the sound off, Nex Machina is definitely a game that’s much better with the upbeat soundtrack running loud in the backdrop.

Nex Machina is an absolute blast. It strips away everything that doesn’t add to the gameplay and offers a pure, unadulterated experience like few other games in the genre.

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