Big Sky Infinity review
- Posted December 10th, 2012 at 07:56 EDT by Steven Williamson
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Intense and challenging with addictive upgrade system, Big Sky Infinity has that one-more-go appeal.
- Great depth with the upgrade system
- Addictive and fast-paced arcade shoot 'em up gameplay
- Asynchronous multiplayer allows for lots of challenge options and increases replay value greatly
- Repetitive audio, level design and enemies - the result of randomly-generated missions
- Lacks the creativity in terms of enemy and boss design as some of the top twin-stick shooters
(continued from previous page) ...the spin attack when the screen is full of activity and watching your score in the top right-hand corner go crazy as you smash enemies to bits.
Big Sky Infinity throws a lot of stats at you, which is great if you want to see how you’ve progressing. You can see how many points you’ve earned per second, averages throughout each game mode, the highest multiplier you’ve scored and much more. Indeed, presentation as a whole is impressive with separate sections for stats and worldwide scores, as well as a library that details every enemy, skill and boss in the game. That slick presentation extends to the narration which is quite humorous with a very-British voice-over telling you that “you’re a spoon”, if you fail, or that “he’ll buy you a lovely packet of crisps” if you do well. That Britishness extends to the library, where it compares Big Sky Infinity’s Arcade mode to a “weathered Yorkshire labourer at the local pub.” After a while, the narrator can be a little annoying as he repeats the same sayings over and over again, but generally the sense of humour is a welcome addition to what is a serious and intense shoot ‘em up.
Outside of Classic Mode, there’s a fair few game modes to get stuck into, though the developer makes you work to unlock them. Personally, we’d rather have had all this stuff unlocked from the outset, though it hasn’t taken us more than a couple of hours to unlock the likes of Boss Rush, Arcade, Countdown, Nightmare and Hell modes. There’s also Marathon mode and Pacifism, where you can’t shoot at all, as well a multiplayer mode called Horse.
The multiplayer system on Vita works very well. Leaderboards are updated in real-time so you can always see where you stand before and after each session and you can set up challenges for others to pick up and vice versa. You can pick and choose game mode and game types - perhaps choosing to mix Boss Rush with Starbits so that you’re fighting against the bosses, but the aim is to pick up the most amount of Starbits. This means you can come up with a lot of different challenge types and therefore there’s plenty of replay value in challenging friends and the online universe. The PS3 version also supports 2-4 players local co-op and a handy little feature called Cloud Save which allows you to pick up where you left off on either the Vita or PS3 version.
Without levels to plough through, Big Sky Infinity does initially feel like there's no depth at all to it. However, as you start to earn starbits, upgrade your craft and feel how your craft progressing that one-more-go mentality kicks right in and it all starts to make sense. Gameplay is fast-paced, intense and challenging and despite the fact there’s plenty of enemy, audio and backdrop repetition, the control scheme is intuitive and there’s plenty of fun to be had out of building your craft to the best it can possibly be and then trying to improve on each blast through. Let's be honest here; Big Sky Infinity isn’t about to be hailed as the new king of twin-stick shoot ‘em ups when there’s the likes of Super Stardust Delta or Geometry Wars around, but it is going to provide hours of fun for competitive types who just have to unlock everything and those who like their arcade action fast-paced and challenging.
Note: A big, big reminder that Big Sky Infinity is available to PS Plus members in Europe for free for a limited time only. Also, there will be a starbit shop opening shortly on the PlayStation Store where players can purchase starbits to upgrade their craft.
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