A 2D rogue-like synth-punk shooter… yes! It’s all those things. Black Future ’88 throws a mishmash of genres and styles together and boy does it work. Oddly enough while I’m not into rogue-like games in the slightest, it just never seems worth it to me.  This was probably the best BETA I’ve played in the last couple of years. I’ll admit it started off a little rocky with me trying to play it on my work computer which is by no means slow, found it a little taxing on resources with poor frame rates and long load times. But once I ran it on the home computer it ran like a finely tuned German automobile, tuned for pleasure rather than performance.

A Baptism By Nuclear Fire

An interesting cartoon like intro with a captivating art style sets the scene and then throws you into the Black Future ’88 immediately.  A world destroyed by bombs in 1988 and trapped in that time era, hence the synth-punk music. The music is very similar to that of a band called Gunship. You attempt climb to the top of procedurally generated tower with a set limit of time to live before your heart explodes. Yes I know, a ridiculous premise for a game but to be honest it really works. It provides the perfect amount of urgency to keep you going.

Started From The Bottom Now We’re Here

Black Future ’88 has a very fine balance on the enemies you encounter. While you will see may that you have already faced before. You will now have a brand new weapon or skill to try on them. The game handles random encounters in a way that almost feels like a side quest. An enemy which stands out from the rest and puts you to the test with a bit of story attached to it. The boss battles add a good amount of challenge and sense of achievement as you progress to through them to the top of the tower. I won’t spoil the end of what happens when you finally reach the top, but I definitely recommend pushing until you get there. The more you play, the more you unlock upgrades, characters and weapons to get to the top adding a nice touch to the game from letting it get stale.

What The Future Has In Store

Black Future ’88 is being developed by a developer under the name of Super Scary Snakes and I certainly look forward to seeing how the game progresses. I recommend this game to anyone with a love for cyberpunk, synth-wave and shooters. An indie game done right.

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