Black And White Is Beautiful In ‘Rogue Invader’Filed inside: Games
We live in a gaming world where artistry and visual standards are ever evolving. In the relatively short time frame since the beginnings of gaming, we’ve see a massive overhaul of graphical capabilities and design. Each year a slew of highly funded AAA titles make their way on scene, oozing with sharp, impressively rendered 3D models and creative color palettes.
Lately we are seeing more and more indie releases that push the boundaries of what we have come to expect from game graphics. There used to be a time when a game would release with visuals that were “below” the 3D standard, much to the dismay of most gamers. That stigma has seemingly vanished over recent years, and we’ve been left in a magical state of visual acceptance, where artists of all backgrounds and styles are free to express themselves so long as they have the gameplay mechanics to back it up. Because of this, we’re seeing unique creations that are as far from the graphical norm as possible, creations like the upcoming side-scrolling shooter, Rogue Invader.
Yearning for the days of classical television, Rogue Invader is completely devoid of any traces of color. It is instead entirely plastered in a variety of black, white, and gray tones. Many of you diehard visual fans may cringe at the thought of that, a game entirely composed in black and white, but Squishy Games actually manages to take a vastly limited set of colors and craft a beautiful Sci-Fi world. The simple silhouettes and lack of detail create the fantasy that you’re enveloped in a retro title, while still maintaining a bold, modern, flair. We’ve seen many indie artists a attempt to re-create these retro feelings, with games like Shovel Knight, Rogue Legacy, and Cave Story, which were all widely successful in terms of visuals and gameplay.
It seems that many gamers from all walks of life rather enjoy the graphical throwbacks. Rogue Invader should captivate many minds, and provide some solid eye candy, making another strong case for “games are art” in the process. Everything from cutscenes to character designs to levels are thickly-outlined and dipped in shadow. It gives the entire title a rather macabre look, invoking the sense that you’re alone amongst the stars, waging war on an alien species deep within the black chasm of space. The planet surface is stark white, offering the perfect backdrop to highlight tall, foreboding, oynx-skinned creatures as they slink and weave through protruding rocks in an attempt to slay our hero.
Gameplay plays second fiddle to impressive visuals, but that doesn’t mean Rogue Invader is just another pretty face to look at. Those seeking an engaging title with good customization will most likely be enthralled by Rogue Invader’s fairly deep weapon “creation” system. You’ll have the opportunity to tune a variety of gun types to better match your play-style. Craftable items can be unlocked and built by grabbing components from monsters and areas around the planet. Each item comes with a variety of effects, as well as failure rates and damage multipliers, which makes some gameplay decisions very important. This should really help to ramp up the replayability, as there is a fairly large amount of weapon parts so far. The gameplay may not be as story-driven and complex as some other titles, but it still manages to provide some serious entertainment. There is a light story-element to Rogue Invader, but nothing past a fairly cliche dive into one soldier’s journey to destroy an alien planet against all odds.
The current alpha version of Rogue Invader is completely lacking sound or musical elements, so one has to question if Squishy Games will be handling the audio all on their own or if they will be outsourcing the work to another company. Regardless, we can expect the finished musical scores and effects to be every bit as artistic as the rest of the release, based on the passion we’re seeing from the developer concerning the project.
Rogue Invader has the potential to be a sleep hit when it marches into the indie world, and from what we’ve seen already it’s got great potential to become one of those indie experiences that sticks with you throughout the years. Hopefully, Squishy Games can really polish their creation, and focus on introducing some interesting and engaging story elements into this visually intriguing upcoming release. We will be keeping a close eye on Rogue Invader as it gets closer to release, which should be sometime later this year. If you want more information, be sure to check out Squishy Games’ website here.