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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published By: Black Inc.
Developed By: Coreplay
Genre: Shooter
Players: 1-4; 1-2 Online
Rated: E10 (Everyone 10 and Up)
Release Date: September 23, 2009
Screenshots: Link
Xbox: Buy Now!
Written By: Matthew Prunty

Geometry Wars and Super Stardust HD have left their mark on the industry as fun, unique, and immersive shooters that tested the skills and determination of gamers. While both games are still being played to this day, they are now joined by yet another unique shooter known as Ion Assault. While this title isnít a truly original experience, it packs a solid gaming experience that only grows on you and in size of its gameplay the more your play it. Just like with Geometry Wars and Super Stardust HD, at the end of the day, you will be left very satisfied.

Within Ion Assault, you take control of a small spaceship and must destroy a vast array of meteorites and floating rocks in order to complete a level and progress through the game. There are only four levels in total for the game, which seems small, but the immersive levels are broken down into several unique stages. There are six stages for every level, which includes a boss battle. Each level will present its own unique enemies that will try to attack and destroy your spaceship in numerous ways. While many enemies will take the initiative to attack you head on, there are other enemies which will hide within the shadows of floating rocks and attack via launching missiles in your direction.

The gameplay mechanics within Ion Assault are simple and easy to understand, however the control scheme within the game adds a bit of awkwardness to the gameplay. The right analog stick is used to aim your shots, while you must hold down the left trigger in order to fire a single blast. The reason why it feels awkward is because in games of a similar nature, you have a steady stream of bullets being fired from your ship and thatís done through either pressing a button or simply aiming the right analog stick to fire your guns. However, to alleviate the need to charge your cannon before firing it, Coreplay implemented several different maneuvers which will allow you to charge your cannon quicker, thus keeping up with the fast-pace action of the game.

Ion Assault visual presentation are very alluring and solid eye candy. Each level boasts vast array of colors from the backdrops, to the special effects from ships and rocks being blasted to bits. While everything looks beautiful, as the action gets hectic, especially within the co-op and multiplayer modes, the action can get so intense that you lose sight of your own ship, which can lead to unexpected death. The in-game soundtrack is pretty solid. The tracks are befitting the intense action on screen. For those not feeling it, you can always opt to play one of your favorite tracks from your HDD.

With the single-player campaign being able to be completed in 2-3 hours, depending on your gameplay expertise, you will be longing for extra content. Thankfully Coreplay added in a co-op option, which will allow you to play through the single-player campaign with a friend. While this is a great, this mode is only available offline, which will be hard for many Xbox Live gamers who mostly game with people on the internet. There is also the inclusion of a competitive mode where up to four players can duke it out with one another for supremacy.

Ion Assault is another great gaming experience brought to Xbox 360 owners via Xbox Live Arcade. Whether an offline or online gamer, you are provided a solid multiplayer experience that is very befitting an intense shooter of its caliber. Now if only they offered this game via the PlayStation Network.


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