Before the storm :
Three years ago, i researched over the internet to find a game which permit to play and feel like you are really into a mech. After so many years of anime like Gundam/Harlock, or movies like Evangelion, Eureka Seven and many more. Is that all ? Armored Core ? Good but too complicated... Gundam games ? It's like playing with toys, fun, i can afford that, but still boring. I'm missing some others, i know that. But i was really looking for an experience INTO a mech, to feel his movements, trying to learn my first flight, using my sword for the first time. You know, a bit like what Del Toro did with Pacific Rim.
And then...Galak-Z, it comes out from nowhere, i just saw the main protagonist (A-Tak) i told myself "I like that look, it reminds some kind of Harlock" and i loved Harlock, so, i go on and see what can i found on it.
Well, after some research i found that the game was coming on PS4 (which i didn't have at this time) Vita (which i did and still have) and PC (where i don't like to play games) for 2014. It was developed by 17bits. Never heard of them, so i thought it was their first game. Wrong ! They made Skull of the shogun, with undead-samourai and some strategic stuff. Good reviews, why not ? It's only on PC, damn ! maybe one day... (I did try the game on PS4 afterall, and i hated it. However i love all that samourai stuff, and strategic games. But after 4 hours, it was not for me. So i was really skeptical about Galak-Z... Is it going to be the same experience ?)
And then, years passed, and 2014 is here, and nothing. My Vita need games and still no word about Galak-Z, one of my most anticipated game of the year is not coming... I watched every single interview about J.Kazdal, every gameplay video, and read everything related to that game. And i do those things only for the game i really want to play...
February 2015, i finally bought a PS4. Waiting for my most anticipated game of all time Metal Gear Solid V, i'm playing other games like FF Type0, Resident Evil , and indies like Transistor , Resogun or Towerfall. But, something missing, seriously, all those games are really good, but, in my mind, something telling me that still, there is a game that i wanted to play but still not there. E3 2015 is here, and i saw J.Kazdal back from space and S.Yoshida with him showing some Galak-Z footage. Again, my mind is blown away. "A release date mister Kazdal ?!" I asked myself, and he said vaguely "This summer" At least, it's for this year so, i'm bumped !
And one day, 17bit twitter account announced the game was coming August 4th on PS4 first and then PC, no Vita. At this moment i'm like "thank god i bought the PS4 in time !"
So, to sum up, my hopes for Galak-Z were very,very high. But at this time, of course, i did not know one important, very important thing. The Mech mode. I was only interested in Galak-Z for its animation and retro anime feeling style. And until the very end, I thought the game was a twin-stick shooter !
They fooled me (in a freaking good way) only 2 weeks before they released the game, J.Kazdal announced some thing big for the game, I thought the 1st time it was a web serie to promote the game. Nope sir, a mech is available in the game...I'm like "Whaaaaaat ?!" And then the hype goes up with some unforgettable gif and that trailer in loop on my computer showing off the new features. Seriously, they got me. Right in the eyes, this is for me, it's better than everything i ever imagined.
During the storm :
And finally, the day to play Galak-Z has finally arrived. And it's full of (good) surprise. To the title screen, to the menu, everything i dreamed of is here, right in front my eyes : big letters "Galak-Zzzz" Everything in this menu is here to please me. Took a deep breath after listening the music title screen, first animation video, i'm already in love. But my brain is telling me to shut the fuck off and to see if the music and the gameplay are good (my top priorities in video games, i know, i'm weird but i grow up with NES/64 games so...) And that's it. First mission, it's called a "tutorial". I'm sorry to tell you that, but it's not. It's better ! You should called this "learn to fly" mission. Because it's what it is. A mission where you learn to fly and control your ship. And more importantly, it's not a "dual-stick shooter" it's so much more than that. It's like space simulation. I'm in heaven. I died twice in the 1st season, but that's ok, i met worst...i go on.
First season finished, i finally unlocked the mech mode. Nothing to say besides it's the first true mech simulation i ever dreamed of, i can feel that mech, all in my fingers, and that transformation sound ! (thank you J.Kazdal) My expectations were high, but at this moment i knew that 17bit game Galak-Z was my game of the year in indie category. And then you see all those references from previous game (Infiltration from Metal Gear Solid, shooting mechanics from old arcade games from Sega, exploration like Castlevania, that Dark Soul feeling when you lose everything and many more) and you met that insanely good A.I, the interaction with the environment, that old difficulty really welcomed (and not a "die and retry" game, when you die in Galak-Z, it's your fault, and you can avoid that, even in a 1st run) I'm having a blast, all that wait worth it !
But the moment were everything was settled, it's that mech fight at the end of season 2. Only 1 life left, i'm trying to figure out how can i beat that boss, and that's it, the music named "Arise, Marble Zodiac" comes to my hears, and i'm in fire ! And i have that feeling of Gundam, critical moment, only one shot or i'm dead. After a few seconds, my mech shield is up, my sword is charged, and i can see the mech boss parts floating in space. I pause for a few seconds "how can that game be so good ?" I told myself. Well, i think i know the answer know. The devs behind it put their soul and efforts in it. Thanks to that, we have a piece of art (yeah that's not longer a game for me) and reminds me that again gameplay and music/sounds are so important in a game. I finished the mission, i quit, i'm so happy, my friends don't know why...yet.
After the Storm :
I'm in this madness, that madness, i'm only give it to japanese games like Metal Gear series, or Devil May Cry series among other. But this time, it's not a japanese game, it's from occidentals people with their vision on japanese games. And it's perfect for me. I think it's clever. So i'm planning to buy everything related to Galak-Z in the near future. I already talked about the game around me, and some of my friends are already having a fun time. Maybe not like me, but they liked the game. I think that's the most important.
Finally i can say directly to the devs : i truely hated Skulls of the shogun, but i can say proudly that Galak-Z is the best mech/ship experience i had in years and it's one of my favorite game of all time. Thank you for being passionate and bring me joy. I played, i play and i'll play Galak-Z until i get sick of it (not gonna happened).
PS : J.Kazdal, you're the man !
Because nothing is perfect the first time :
I know you have already something in the pipeline for us, but if you can take a look at those suggestions, it'll be much appreciated !
- add a gallery mode (showing some artwork, biopics about characters, a bestiary)
- add a one life mode
- add a suvival mode
- a leaderboard
- more upgrades for the mech
- new environments
Thanks for reading me, looking forward for more Galak-Z !
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