Hypership Out of Control (iOS) and Hypership Still Out of Control (XBLIG)
January 21, 2012 12 Comments
I think the thing that disappointed me most about VolChaos is that I know Fun Infused Games has talent. I know this because I was hooked on Hypership Out of Control for the iPhone and iPad. If that doesn’t impress you, it should. If there’s one genre I dislike more than anything else, its vertical space shooters. Yet Hypership was fast-paced, twitchy, high-score based, and loads of fun.
The idea is that you’re a ship with a hyperdrive set permanently in the “on” position. With no way to brake, you have to clear gates and shoot any debris in your way, all while scrolling forward at break-neck speed. There are some items that will slow you down, but for the most part you have to rely on quick reflexes and digital dexterity to survive. You have a cannon but it fires automatically, so all you have to worry about is using your finger to slide your ship back and forth.
There’s online leaderboards and multiple modes of play. Usually when a game like this hits, one or more of the modes are total stinkers. Here, every mode has its merits. “Hardcore” mode is exactly the same as normal, except you only have one life, creating an awesome sense of tension. In “Coin Down” the coins you collect on the course act as your fuel. In SuperSpeed, you take the role of an albino hamster who is strapped to a rocket car and attempts to beat the land speed record for a rodent on the Bonneville Salt Flats, the previous record holder being Richard Hammond. Actually, it’s just normal mode with more speed. But I’m sure I just gave someone an idea for a bitchin’ new game.
Hypership on iPhone (or iPad if you’re a snoot) is one of the few games I’ve come across that I don’t have a whole lot of complain about. Thankfully a vastly inferior port was just launched on Xbox Live Indie Games that I can gleefully murder. Well I guess technically the iPhone version is the port while the new XBLIG game is a remake of the original. It’s called Hypership Still Out of Control, and it actively sucks with all the might of a whirlpool stuck inside a black hole.
Hypership Still Out of Control has all the play modes of the iOS version, and even includes local multiplayer. But I found the game nearly unplayable because it lacks the precision of touch control that I had grown so accustomed to on my iPhone. Regardless of whether you’re using the D-pad or the analog stick, movement is too loose. This is a major problem when trying to navigate past gates with narrow openings. The whole point of the game is that your ship is moving at unreasonably dangerous speeds, so anything less than absolute flawless control is simply not going to cut it.
Another thing that I had grown fond of on the iOS port was not having to do anything to make the ship fire. On iPhone, the ship never stops firing. It’s pretty convenient because there’s never really a point where you won’t want it to be shooting. On XBLIG, you have to manually fire. It’s not really a deal breaker, because lots of games do that. I guess it’s matter of comfort. It’s like going from laying on a comfy mattress made of clouds to laying on a bed of nails.
And finally, there’s no online leaderboards. Yea, the only option on XBLIG is ghettoized peer-to-peer ones that are hard to implement, but the only reason to own this game is to try posting high scores. There’s actually an explanation screen where it’s explained that it wasn’t worth the effort and you should buy the iOS or Windows Phone 7 (ha, as if) ports if you’re into this sort of thing. So I’ll just go by the same advice the developers themselves gave. If you have a dollar to spare, there are few things as fun or addictive at that price as Hypership out of Control for iPhone/iPad/iPod/iPacemaker (coming in October). If, however, you only have XBLIG, you might as well spend those 80 points on a shinny new sombrero for your avatar because Hypership on it is Hyper-shit. I knew I could work that line in there somewhere.
99¢ and 80 Microsoft Points heard Apple fanboys are now eating bacon three meals a day in anticipation of the iPacemaker in the making of this review.