There’s a Shoggoth on the Rise, a Review

8 Apr

By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

Shoggoth_screenshot-10

Some clichés can surprisingly work under the right situation. In Shoggoth Rising, an iOS / Android / Windows Mobile arcade game, the danger arrives in a dark and stormy night when the beasts from underneath the sea takes interest in a derelict ship that runs aground. Ned is the only survivor and he’s stranded on a little isle after his ship capsized during a lightning storm. Locked away, high atop a lighthouse tower, there’s very little he can do other than to blast away at everything coming at him. The light is his only shining beacon of hope. Will rescue come? In this game’s case, never!

This arcade game uses what’s classic in games of yore to make gaming endless. When he dies, the game dies. Although this game has been out for a little more than a year, early versions were not all that stable on certain platforms, and this update offers two levels, each of them with 30 stages of play. At the time of this writing, the fifteen stages have been accomplished. When considering how tough each segment becomes, that’s an achievement.
When considering that keeping the spinning screen stable is part of the challenge, gamers not only have to consider blasting everything within visibility but also worry about what’s crawling behind the lighthouse. The 3D style spinning shooter is a great variation on a theme. This game is sort of like Space Invaders in reverse and there’s no shields to protect Ned from the creatures spitting energy orbs at him in the later stages.

unnamedStorywise, the connection with H.P. Lovecraft’s literary works does not make itself known until later stages. The big question many gamers will ask is when will the Shoggoths arrive? These protoplasmic blobs are nowhere to be seen and any semblance of them does not arrive till stage 8. The Baby Shoggoths look more like beetles and if mama Shoggoth is nearby, the first eye stalked polyp does not emerge until stage 12. Other strangeness slowly emerges from the sea, and maybe by the final stages to this level, a proper gelatinous blob filled with screaming orifices and blinking oculi will arrive.

To get to level two and beyond will mean having the fastest finger in the west. Players have to tap between weapon changes or summoning St. Elmo’s Fire to destroy the monsters. Dynamite is offered in the higher stages to bomb creatures still swimming in the ocean, and thankfully, more buttons emerge to help kill the beasts that constantly appear to thwart Ned’s plans to stay alive.

In an update that’s showing that this game is very much alive and in constant development, the wonder is if the challenges will not wear out those fast fingers. On small screen like those of 4 inches or less, this game can be hard to play. Fat fingers do not help. On larger game screens of 7 inches or more, this game is fine. However, it should be noted that playing this game with its highest graphics settings on can potentially drain the battery.

Just how many taps are needed to kill the ocean dwellers depends on how fast anyone can dial 911 for help. Sadly, this emergency service has no cure for video game addiction. This game gets it kicks with very short playing sessions. Play any longer, and perhaps a bus stop might get missed.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: