Star Soldier R – WiiWare

Eight dollars for a mini-game?

by Raccoonacorn

Name: Star Soldier R
Genre: Classic Shooter
Platform: WiiWare

When I was younger, I remember playing games while my little brother sat behind me and shouted that I should be grabbing every point worthy object. He insisted  that I was, "totally not getting a high score." I probably punched him really hard in the arm and insisted that I didn't care. Which I didn't. You see, in my opinion there are two types of gamers: those who just want to beat a game to feel a sense of accomplishment, and those who are constantly striving to get the highest score possible or complete every minute task (see Xbox achievement points). Star Soldier R is definitely for the latter.

Star Soldier R tasks you with blowing things up. Lots of things; from enemy spacecraft, to floating orbs, stationary targets, and even strange, colorful triangles. In true top-down shooter form, there are about 50 things on screen at any moment that you can shoot. These lead to lots of frantic, seizure-inducing mayhem that should satisfy most shooter fans.

Where Star Soldier fails, however, is in its game modes, of which there are three: a five-minute and two-minute time limit mode, and Quick-Shot mode. The time-limit modes allow you to see how quickly you can accumulate points in two stages. If you end up buying this game, you'll get pretty intimate with the timed stages as- they are the only ones worth playing.  Joy. In all honesty, Quick-Shot mode is a waste. It should be called "Press Button Really Fast Mode". You push a button as fast as you can, and - bam! - you have your score and also a really sore finger and possibly a broken Wii-mote.

Quick-Shot mode ties into the main "game", but only slightly. In the options main you have the choice to switch between automatic or manual firing of your weapons. Automatic means you hold the button down and your guns shoot non-stop. Manual mode means you get to have finger cramps for the next hour.

If you are a spontaneous person, you'll probably enjoy Star Soldier's approach to dumping you into the game without explaining the controls or back story. But here at Gamervision we generally enjoy having a back-story, no matter what game we are playing. And since Hudson Soft didn't provide us with one, we like to assume that throughout the two hair-raising levels you are actually battling a band of Nazi Tyrannosaurs-Rexes in space.

Now it's not all bad, and I'm a fan of the "compliment sandwich", I'll say that Star Soldier has some pretty nice graphics. There is often a lot going on visually, yet the action is rather easy to follow - enemies are noticeable, and items and bonus points have a distinctive look. There are some neat perspective changes in the middle of the second stage that made me feel a little dizzy, but still were nicely executed.

There are also worldwide and regional leader boards that allow you to compare your high scores with other players and inflate or deflate your sense of self-worth.

While Star Soldier isn't the deepest, most nuanced game available, it has some pretty tight shooting and fast-paced game play. If you're that second type of gamer who just has to have the highest score, you may find 8 dollars worth of game play. Otherwise, save yourself some money and finger pain.

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  • Puxel

    I guess the point of view really sets our two reviews apart. I am that second type of gamer. I studied (yes. studied) the levels in Ikaruga so I could almost get them down on Normal with a blindfold on. I'm a weirdo for it, but it's how I play. There's a lot of truth in this, but I can't put it down.

  • Sarah

    I find that with games like this, there are two types of people: those who absolutely love them and can't get enough, and those who look at the first group and then back at the game and say "I don't get it."

  • Raccoonacorn

    @ Puxel: Definitely the dividing point. I'm not trying to hate on the actual game play, but the fact that for 8 bucks I felt that game really didn't have much meat to it. At least for a gamer like myself, who isn't all about racking up massive points.


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