The old school makes an appearance on new school technology in Nanostray on the Nintendo DS. Shoot 'em up!
Call me a sucker for a good old-fashioned shooter. There's nothing like the mentality of a "me against the world" scenario, where it's one lone ship under your control facing off against mindless alien armadas that launch an arsenal of non-stop gunfire at you. Some of my favorite games are shooters, such as Treasure's classic Radiant Silvergun for the Saturn, and the old-school Axelay for the SNES. Joining those leagues last year was Shin'en's incredibly impressive Iridion II for the Game Boy Advance, a much overlooked shooting title that still stands well on the system today. Majesco was wise for keeping the developer around, as they're about to strike again with an even more impressive shooting effort.
The game is called Nanostray, and it's about to ferociously jar Nintendo DS owners. This old-school shooter is combining with a new-school presentation to become a visually festive blastathon, one that will keep your thumbs blistering as you try to get to the next level. From early videos and screenshots of the game, it looks like we are truly in for something impressive this summer.
The story's not of the typical brand either. You've awakened in the middle of a journey across the planet, kind of shaken up after you've survived an impact to the side of your ship. Amnesia has come into play, and you have no idea how you got to where you were at. But there's still a location plugged in to your console, and the only way you can really unravel the mystery is to proceed on the mission while taking down countless alien threats.
The game will boast an interface that includes much more complex backgrounds than those featured in Iridion II, from cityscapes with looming buildings to beautiful forests. But they're anything but tranquil- all sorts of enemies pop up, launching gunfire at you and growing immensely in size with each new level. The fact it moves at such a smooth frame rate (the final version will boast 60 frames per second) makes it even more tempting.
Along with typical controls that the game is expected to have (shooting, moving around, and dropping the occasional bomb), Nanostray will also utilize the touch screen for special features, like doing some weapon switching, launching into hyperspace, and scanning bosses for crucial weak areas. Combined with the upgradable weapons system that make your cannons even more bad-ass, this is a nice touch and makes you a force to contend with.
The game spans across over ten stages of action, and also features new unlockable game modes as you proceed through the campaign. On top of the boisterous single-player mode, the game also supports two-player co-op and head-to-head battles via the Wireless function. Hey, who doesn't like getting a friend to come along on an alien-obliterating mission? Anyone? If that's not enough, you can also participate through an online ranking system through the Nanostray website, conveniently located at www.nanostray.com.
This hit us by surprise, coming out of left field and slowly growing into something truly appealing - especially if shooters are anywhere in your blood. Nanostray should be quite the sleeper title for the folks at Majesco, and I only hope the relationship with Shin'en blossoms even more sweet treats along the lines of this one. Look for more details and maybe even some hands-on impressions soon.