Developer Rake in Grass have designed one of the most stylish shooter em ups of the year, with their new title Jets ‘n’ Guns, a uniquely designed game with a fresh aesthetic, scalable difficulty and a great sense of humour. As though that weren’t enough, genre newcomers have even more reason to rejoice as Snake in Grass have created one of the most approachable, beginner-friendly shooters on the market.
“With a unique aesthetic, scalable difficult and a great sense of humour, Snake in Grass’ Jets ‘n’ Guns is sure to delight.”
Let’s get the few weaknesses of Jets ‘n’ Guns out of the way first. The story is weak. You play a “Federal Hero,” an ex-military pilot-turned mercenary, who finds himself battling against an old commander who is helping an evil dictator to take over the world. It’s a clichéd premise, and it’s not helped by choppy narrative and reams and reams of frankly boring text. The humour tries its hardest to remedy the tiring storytelling with moments of very abstract hilarity—an advert for erectile dysfunction, for instance—and succeeds most of the time. Nevertheless, there is a pervading sense that more could have been made of the story.
The ingenuity of the humour is matched by that of the art direction, and it is here that Jets ‘n’ Guns truly comes into its own. Very few shooters have so pleasing an aesthetic. The visuals are built by levels, the foreground, mid-ground and background appearing like the different layers of a pop-up book. It’s a refreshing style that gives Jets ‘n’ Guns a sense of personality, clearly distinguishing it from the all too many Japanese-esque shooters. And when the screen lights up with enemies and lasers, it’s a delight to behold.
Jets N Guns: One of the best looking indie shooters in ages
The visuals, above all else, carry a sense of joy, and it’s a sense of joy which is matched by the gameplay itself. Taking place in side-scrolling perspective, levels of Jets ‘n’ Guns begin with the player customising their ship with different weapons and upgrades, then testing it out on a battlefield. Not happy with your test? Refund your purchases and build your ship again. You’ll need your ship to be perfect as the game grows difficult in places. It’s important to have the best set-up before beginning a level. Equipment management becomes an essential skill later on.
Icing on this very generous cake is added by way of an excellent soundtrack, the work of Machine Supremacy, a highly talented Swedish rock band who, thanks to a successful fundraising project, are now embarking on a world tour.
OVERALL: 9 out of 10
Personality, exemplary gameplay and the wise inclusion of scalable difficulty make Jets ‘n’ Guns an essential shooter.
visit the developer’s website for more.