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PS4 Game Review

Hyper Sentinel


Format: PS4
Publisher: Huey Games
Developer: Four5Six Pixel
RRP: £11.99
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Age Restrictions: 3+
Release Date: 11 May 2018

The appetite for retro games seems far from fading away. The days of 8-bit games seems to be having a renaissance on machines which are lightyears away from the Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum and Amiga and yet more games keep popping up.

review imageHyper Sentinel, for the PS4, is a side scrolling arcade shooter developed by Four5Six Pixel / Huey Games following crowdfunding. Essentially, it’s a Uridium clone, a game released in 1986.

The premise is simplicity itself. You command a ship and must blow up starships whilst under attack from support craft. Survive long enough and you will get to fight the boss. Beating the boss is what allows you to make your way through the game's twelve levels.

Control of your ship is likewise minimal with a fire button and the ability to swap directions. You can travel up and down, but your ship remains in the centre of the screen while the background moves beneath you. This does mean that your view of potential targets is somewhat obstructed, it would have been nice to have the ability to fire while remaining still or while moving backwards. As it is, you spend most of your time flipping around the scrolling background.

review imageThe art style is very eighties as is the soundtrack which perfectly captures the annoying sound that early computers tried to persuade us was music. I can’t be too harsh as it is a perfect call back to early arcade machines. If you're looking for a retro game, I’m suspecting that having full orchestral music would cause cognitive dissonance.

The game has three modes of play: arcade mode, survival mode and boss mode. Survival mode is the same as arcade mode, but instead of moving towards the final boss, the aim is to stay alive for as long as you can against an endless wave of enemy ships. If you want to quickly move through the levels, then the boss mode takes you straight to the end of the level and the boss battle.

Although the game has trophies it has no end game. Re-playability relies on you caring about your position in the leader board. Whilst this can work as an incentive it does rely on the game becoming successful enough for the leader board to become relevant.

review imageAs you play through you can pick up a few power ups, including double lasers, a rather nice astro mace and a buddy drone, all of which contribute to your survivability. You can also pick up smart bombs, extra energy, invincibility, bonus point and a multiplier boost.

The game basically delivers on what it promises, a retro game experience for fans of Uridium. Its biggest problem is that once you clear all twelve levels the only reason to continue is the leader board and that is down to the individual gamer whether this is something important to you.


Charles Packer

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