For many years, some “Tech pundits” and “critics” have claimed “Desktop Linux is dead”, of course that statement is incorrect as we have companies like Canonical thrusting their Linux flavour into the mainstream with more people experiencing Linux on their desktop. As indi development moves forward in leaps and bounds too (which many hugely successful titles) we see in most cases a Linux flavour is catered for within their releases.
For the people who do indeed claim that desktop Linux is dead, I would merely ask, why then would any indi-developer game developer with a Linux version at all?
Maybe unimaginatively named “The Platform Shooter” (TPS) caught my attention not merely because it was an Alpha release and I’m able to jump onto the development at an early stage, watching the package mature, but because as is often the case with many indi titles, it brought back memories of yesteryear with an apparent influence from two software titles from the past. Developed with the Ogre3D engine and available cross-platform (as well as 32/64 Linux catered for) TPS offers itself as a pre-compiled binary so everyone can get a taste of what is to come in future versions.
The first thing that strikes you when you run TPS is that its still under heavy construction, presenting a simplistic but functional menu system. The developer wants you to download, test and report back, but with that in mind, many of the games mechanics are in place not only to give you a good idea of the direction that the developer is taking with this title, but also providing a fun little game even at this early stage.
After navigating the functional yet self explanatory menu’s, the game throws you into a world reminiscent of two retro titles, the first one being Mission Impossible with its platform/shoot-em-up genre, the second being its style of graphics which for me put me instantly in mind of Another World.
The object of the game is to get from the start of the level to the finish, collecting things on the way, navigating obstacles and shooting bad guys – simple, addictive and fun.
TPS also includes a level editor for your own creations as well as online play, both features are surprisingly mature for an alpha release and certainly will give TPS the advantage over other Linux platform titles in future releases.
At present time I was unable to test the multiplayer feature which states that you are able to battle other players online, however the level editor is very intuitive, allowing your creative juices to extend the replay value of this title.
There are currently three levels available for play and for those who love platform games as well as those who like to follow a project from it beginnings, TPS caters for them very well. The low hardware requirements will also be a draw for users and the developer states that even a 4-year-old PC will not struggle with the demands that TPS puts on their system.
Get yourself a copy today! http://www.fractilegames.com
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