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Publisert: 1. mai 2018 kl. 12:19
Oppdatert: 1. mai 2018 kl. 13:21

WE ARE DOOMED looks like another Geometry Wars clone, or a Robotron clone for you old-school folks out there. Twin-stick score-attack shooting against waves of swarming enemies in a rectangular arena, yawn, seen it. But look, if you still think there's life in the sub-genre (or if you wish there was), you must play WE ARE DOOMED.

It hits you first with the look. The simple, colorful shapes look a bit flat in screenshots, but come alive when they fill your screen in motion. And, importantly for an arcade game, the action is always instantly readable through all the chaos.

The real smarts in WE ARE DOOMED's design take a bit more play to come through. The SUPERBEAM system is a simple bit of genius, almost too simple to notice, so I'll unpack it here. Pickups spawn semi-randomly around the arena, often in inconvenient places. Each pickup charges your SUPERBEAM. When the meter is full, you can unleash it to (1) temporarily replace your ordinary beam with one that reaches across the arena and tears through enemies in an instant, (2) multiply your score gains for the length of the effect, and (3) gain a brief moment of invulnerability. Pickups disappear quickly, though, so you may need to carve your way through a horde of enemies to grab one. If you try to play conservatively and avoid hard pickups, not only do you miss out on score opportunities, you end up without enough firepower to keep the arena clear.

The risk/reward tension of the SUPERBEAM system gives a session of WE ARE DOOMED the close-range enemy-dodging frantic fun of late-game Geometry Wars for almost its entire length. This pacing improvement over similar games, combined with plenty of polish and generally thoughtful design, makes WE ARE DOOMED my favorite coffee-break shooter. I hope to see you on the leaderboards!
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