Game of the Week: Awesomenauts

How to premise this next game in as few words as possible, while still delivering what it’s all about?

Well how about this – take the over-the-top quirkiness of classic late-80’s and 90’s cartoons, toss in some violence, some online gameplay and throw it all together into one of the most odd, unique, and action-packed tower defense games I’ve ever laid eyes on – and you’d roll yourself a spacecraft full of Awesomenauts designed by Ronimo Games. [ – even the name sounds like it was pulled from an ’80’s cartoon! ]

The game is played online with others [so it’s unfortunate for those lacking constant internet access] and you get [ currently 6 ] characters to choose from as your character. Essentially the premise is that with every level you have an array of turrets assigned to your team [ usually 3 + ] They are color coded Red or Blue accordingly. Your goal, if you choose to accept it: Destroy all of your opposing teams turrets and power base before they destroy yours – while simultaneously defending your own base from opposing online players, grabbing upgrades for yourself, etc. Sound ‘Awesome’ enough yet to give this game a look?

I pity the fool who messes with the Awesomenauts!

The game is a 2D side-scroller and it’s so action packed and fast-paced that I swear it becomes addictive after the first few matches. Mix all of this with interesting and quirky characters, a dynamite soundtrack, and memorable one-liner quips as you thwart off enemies and you’re in for a blast with Awesomenauts. Picture the A Team – but in space.

Well, now that I’ve gushed over the gameplay enough let’s talk about the accessibility of the game hmm?

Pros:

  • All cutscenes between matches have subtitled dialogue, perfect for deaf players.
  • Controls require a lot of buttons, but they are simple to navigate – so that’s a plus.
  • Fast-paced action and gameplay makes for an intriguing memorable experience.
  • Mini-map in corner to visually show off where turrets are being attacked.
  • Simple, well defined upgrade system for characters during gameplay.
  • Large print text during gameplay perfect for vision-impaired gamers.
  • Game is available in multiple languages:
    •  English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, and Dutch 
  • 3 player local co-op vs. online opponents makes game much more fun.

We’re like the Three Musketeers, or the Three Amigos – of AWESOME!

Cons:

  • Game requires use of two-hands. One-handed gameplay possible, but much harder.
  • Game requires precision and quick reflexes. The fast-paced gameplay lends to speed.
  • Color scheme may be very harsh for colorblind gamers at some points in the game.
  • No customizable settings on control scheme. It’s a set scheme, no option for change.
  • Game requires an internet connection to play – you can play offline practice via bots – but the fun is truly in online opponents.
  • Flashy animations may be harsh on epileptic patients.

Live to WIN! Take it ALL! Keep on FIGHTING TILL YOU FALL!

Overall the game was an addictive experience from the first turret kill. I’ve only had the privilege of playing as Leon or Lonestar, but the other characters seem to be really unique and interesting as well, and it seems as though Ronimo Games is going to be making more available soon… more Awesome? Yes please!

So thank you Ronimo Games – you’ve provided me with yet another tower-defense game that will probably consume a vast majority of my time again! Awesome game deserves some awesome praise! Congrats guys on a great game and I hope to see more from this studio. Please consider a possible patch to add customizable control schemes to the board – overall that’s the one thing that I felt hindered this game the most for me.

So go forth my minions! – be Awesome, and you too can save the galaxy from your friends in Awesomenauts which is available for XBox 360 and PS3 via the XBLA or PSN for 800 Microsoft points – which I believe equates to like $8 via PSN.

Now GO! FIGHT! WIN!

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