In Steel Assault, your cruel dictator foe has brought tons of machine enemies and firearms to bear on you. You brought your fists, a whip, and some rope.
Doesn’t seem like many tools to bring to fight gun-toting robots, but Taro’s pretty angry about the state of the world. The kind of angry where you just punch robots to pieces. Not that punching is your only tool, as Taro’s electrical whip gives you a bit of range to deal with all of the bullets flying around you. Plus, using a electric whip just feels neat. Kind of like some futuristic vampire hunting, if you ask me. At least the protagonist moves a bit faster than the Belmonts usually do.
The zip line seemed like a strange tool to bring at first, but it gives Taro some fantastic mobility options. None of this tumbling off a cliff garbage like in most games. You can fire off the zip line, which shoots out in both directions, and give yourself something to cling to. This lets you take some acrobatic risks, find safer ground (as long as there’s two walls close together), and move around in some tight spots. It also means you might be dangling from a killer robot high up in the air with only a bit of wire preventing you from falling. And you best bet your enemies are going to try to break it.
Steel Assault is a compelling, fast action game that pushes you to fight up close, but it’s that zip line and the changes it makes to movement that helps the game stand out. And again, it’s nice to be able to catch yourself when something tosses you off a cliff for a change.
Joel has been covering indie games for various sites including IndieGames.com, Siliconera, Gamasutra, Warp Door, CG Magazine, and more over the past seven years, and has written book-length studies on Undertale and P.T.. Joel is constantly on the lookout for digital experiences that push the boundaries of what games can be, and seeks to delve into the creative process, meanings, and emotion labor that goes into the work of artists worldwide.