NeuroVoider comes with three levels of difficulty, starting with n00b easy and ending with hardcore bullet hell. No matter which level you choose, you're in for a good challenge. You'll probably have to play and die a few times before you get the hang of the game. It's not just about shooting and looting, you have to employ offensive and defensive tactics, choose your load-outs wisely, and know when to run away. NeuroVoider will make you think, which makes a lot of sense, seeing as how you play as a brain in a jar.
Co-op is phenomenal in NeuroVoider, this game was made to be played with multiple people. Up to four local players can grab a gamepad, pick a brain and join the fight. Players run around the same screen peppering the room with their own brand of bullets. Enemies have increased hit points the more players you add, and the occasional loot fight can break out if you don't pick and choose which items to grab. Communicate with your teammates, though, and the entire experience is flawless from beginning to end. There are even multiple load-out skills tailor made for co-op play.
While NeuroVoider packs a lot of variety into its mech designs, loot drops and skill customizations, the rest of the game ends up feeling a bit samey. Level layouts are different each time you play, but there are only so many things you can do with L-shaped walls and a couple of loot boxes. Enemies also fall on the dull side of things. They come in two basic varieties: enemies that shoot at you, and tougher enemies that shoot at you. Boss battles change things up a bit, but overall your main survival tactics will remain "shoot, retreat, shoot". Fortunately for NeuroVoider, co-op play smooths over these rough spots to keep you engaged.
NeuroVoider is well-built and offers a lot of challenge. The mix of shooter and RPG balances instant gratification with long term goals, giving you plenty of excuses to play just one more level, especially when you've got a couple of friends in on the action. And to top it all off, the soundtrack by Dan Terminus is killer. If you don't mind the samey-feeling levels and mindless enemies, NeuroVoider is just the octane-riddled shooter you've been looking for.
|UPDATED BY MATT SQUAIRE 3/15/17 TO INCLUDE CONSOLES (PLAYED ON XBOX ONE)|
After reading John's review, I was very excited to try the game on consoles (where I play most of my games) so I grabbed a friend for some couch Co-Op, but my thoughts varied a bit from his.
NeuroVoider is well-built. There is good fun to be had in the loop of destroying foes with powerful weapons, grabbing new ones, trying new powers, customizing the robots and repeating until you get to destroy bosses. My partner was a heavier class and I was lighter, with my abilities allowing me to dash around the battlefield (often out of fire, rather than towards foes) and theirs allowing them to lock-down and shield-up, taking bullets but being unable to fire.
On the other hand, the RPG elements and Co-Op often felt as though they were not totally fleshed out. The loot is exciting to get, but hard to use, as I often found myself collecting great items that would fit well on a different type of robot. "Should I change class? Forsake what I have for what I got?" was a looming question that I had to weigh. I was unable to give loot to my partner who was a different class, leading to a heart dropping feeling as I would scrap items rather than helping my team. Co-Op only lasted as far as shooting robots, after that, it is every mech for themselves.
"Co-Op only lasted as long as shooting robots"
As far as the RPG elements go, they also worked, when customizing. Loot collection was hard to navigate, as you cannot tell what you are picking up, and, in the heat of battle, you often don't want to. Between running and gunning, seeing the quality of what I was collecting was the last thing on my to-do list. My partner used their in-game currency to repair themselves after rounds (they died a lot) but it meant that I was getting better and better loot, leaving them further behind each round. The bosses and elites we fought were a wash for my partner; they died, I battled onward to collect more valuable loot.
In the end, the game is solid, built on a good, fun loop of shooting and looting, as we said in the original review. However, when it comes to both of those things, a partner can be left behind simply due to the game not including any way to catch up.
|MATT'S SCORE: Co-Op 3.5/5 Overall:3.5/5|
The Co-Op Experience: Play with up to four people in this rouge-lite twin stick shooter with RPG elements.
Co-Optimus game reviews focus on the cooperative experience of a game, our final score graphic represents this experience along with an average score for the game overall. For an explanation of our scores please check our Review Score Explanation Guide.