The Best Christmas-Themed Flash Game this year :D
I found a copy of Smash TV at a garage sale for $2 a while back. Granted, I don't even HAVE a Super NES anymore, but I know one of my distant goals is to get one of those "I can play NES/Super NES/Sega Genesis cartridges all in one" contraptions, so I figured it would be a nice little head start in rebuilding a collection of great games I loved and knew as a kid. Sadly, that Smash TV cartridge still sits...and it's waiting...it's been YEARS since I've played the then controversial top-down slaughter-fest.
But hey, it's all good, until then, I got this! :D
Though not quite the scale of Smash TV, it sure as hell reminds me a lot of it. The gameplay is thrillingly gory, violent, and refreshing. Nobody has the balls to admit that we all want to blow up children and wipe them off the face of the earth in the most hardcore way we can imagine. Coincidental or not, the first upgrade I picked up was the buzz-saw launcher, and a grin ripped across my face as the first shot of my projectile cut a bloody path to the other side of the stage.
The rocket launchers acted refreshingly quick...finally somebody that got it right! A rocket that ACTED like a rocket, streaking across the land like the mighty phallus of destruction it so righteously is, planting itself on some poor bastard with a satisfyingly detailed explosion sequence. The mine launcher works well in close proximity, but does little help when you need to rid the tree of it's pestering pecker-products!
One gathers money from destroying the beasts that killed Christmas, and with this newfound currency, you could upgrade your ammo capacity, upgrade your Christmas tree's lifespan, upgrade your chances of getting weapon powerups on the field, or upgrade your own health-bar. With each health upgrade, the effects are immediate, yet for the ammo capacity, it seems to only take effect after you've collected your next upgrade. The weapon-drop probability upgrade is immediate....I guess...kinda hard to tell since powerups in general are uncommon, so the logical course of action is to focus on your Christmas tree.
No tree, no powerups. No powerups, and you're stuck trying to fend off the hoards of teen pregnancy accidents with your default pea-shooter, which takes far too long. Plus it gives the kids something else to go after.
The challenge can start to escalate pretty quickly, but luckily Mrs. Claus is a badass. By only being able to aim at eight specific angles it necessitates a little movement in order to line up the shots just properly. This is made more difficult by the kid's random movement patterns, and only increased by exploding fatty chunks and kids sliding around on inner-tubes, who I swear to God are having so much fun I kinda feel bad for shooting them, because I don't think they're intentionally trying to ruin Christmas. :C
In addition to the previously mentioned powerups, there's a dual shot (two shots are always better than one) the Green...blob explosives, which are incredibly annoying to fire because of the sound it makes. The rapid-fire power-up which looks, sounds, and feels incredibly badass, but is truly useful with the maxed out ammo upgrade. Then there's the spread shot, which only seems to encourage the strategy of cornering yourself.
No kids ever wander into the corner, so by a long play-through, the blood-stains in the snow almost always form a splotchy red diamond. I feel it could benefit the game by having a type of kid that keeps you out of the corner...perhaps a projectile shooting kid to compliment the fatty's explosive barrages.
Additionally, it could only aid the game's replay value to switch up the stages with bigger arenas, or at least varying scenery, like a playground, a football field...stuff like that. 8-bit "Rockin' around the Christmas Tree" gets old by level twenty, it would at least be cool to get an alternate track for when there's no Christmas tree to go rockin' around.
My biggest problem was accidentally clicking outside of the screen. Perhaps a border just on the other side of the fence could remedy that common mistake.