Xeno Assault (PC)

By Chris Dahlberg

Published on Monday, September 19, 2005

Graphics: 9.00
Sound: 8.00
Gameplay: 8.50
Replays: 8.00

Xeno Assault is the newest shooter published by Alawar Entertainment. While in theory it may not sound different from your average game in the genre, give it a chance and you will find an interesting game underneath.

One of the most noticeable aspects of the game is that it looks gorgeous. Everything is detailed and smoothly animated. Even with upwards of 20-30 enemies on-screen at a time, there is no noticeable slowdown, providing for a seamless experience. Also, the game requires one load screen when it first loads and after that runs smoothly for as long as you want. Xeno Assault also includes the option to play in full-screen or windowed mode, though the windowed mode seems a little too small, and is hard to play due to this.

Xeno’s soundtrack is a mix of hard rock with techno. While essentially there are only a few music tracks, each one is catchy enough that it won’t get on your nerves. However, it won’t interfere with the overall experience either, so that’s definitely a plus.

Xeno Assault isn’t that different from your average space shooter, but it manages to stay fun even after an hour or two of play. You control your ship using the mouse, and fire using the mouse buttons. Just like in other games of this type, you are able to gain power-ups by defeating enemies. These include turrets, missiles, and other handy items to help you out along the way. Another interesting addition to the game is the beam gun, which fires after you have been firing normal shots for a certain amount of time. It’s helpful in tight spots, and is a nice addition.

There are three game modes to choose from, and even though each one offers the same levels, they are interesting to try out. Xeno Assault also includes four difficulty levels, allowing you to test your abilities. And unlike others in this genre, Xeno Assault actually packs a challenge. As there are often many enemies on the screen at one time, it is hard to be able to dodge each shot. There are also several challenging battles with massive bosses.

With the exception of a few bugs (in some stages enemies will still appear after you have completed them), Xeno Assault is a very polished game. While it isn’t the deepest shooter ever made, it certainly packs a decent challenge and is very fun to play. If you need a shooter to play for your PC, this is the game to get. Xeno Assault is available at http://www.alawar.com and costs $19.95.

Overall Rating: 8.00

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