Friday, January 23, 2015

Indie Impressions - Goscurry


Now Available on Steam

Developed by Demigiant

Goscurry is one hell of a difficult game, a game so difficult you even have to accept a warning at the beginning agreeing to submit yourself to the oncoming challenge.

As hopeless as that may seem the game constantly conveys to you one simple uplifting message; "Don't Panic". This is much easier said than done as panic is your worst enemy in Goscurry, the first sign of hesitation being your instant downfall. Flashing texts across the rooftops of a slick retrofuture city of minimalistic neon buildings bearing distracting, sometimes encouraging messages and what seem to be references to The Beatles ("You Are 'Not' the Walrus") and Pink Floyd ("Crazy Diamond").

Here you'll find the hypnotizing and maze-like pathway following mechanics of a game like Super Hexagon combined with the obstacle dodging action of titles from the likes of Bit.Trip Runner that all require a serious amount of focus and finger gymnastics. A long stretch of winding and unpredictably twisting road that procedurally builds itself before you, infinitely until your inevitable death. Many hazards litter the abstract urban road ahead forcing you to jump, dash, and dodge your way to a badass highscore you can really be proud of.

Reaching certain target scores in any respective mode unlocks new cities of different flourishing colors to discover and rush through, as well as giving you a higher rank in your overall achievement score. Ranking up earns you slick new rides to drive and fly with. The more insane of players may even earn all 20 ranks giving them the legendary and sought-after Psycho ship, which when used will speed up the game and raise your score no matter what the mode.

The modes you'll be working your way through come in five flavors to train and excel in, starting with the relaxing Training mode which involves no obstacles and lets you focus on honing your movement. Once you've got movement down you move right into Hard mode which spices things up with the aforementioned obstacles, and then Pro which fixes the camera position forcing you to consider the ships angle on each turn.

Build enough confidence and it's time to venture into Freak mode, which keeps the speed set to maximum from the get-go. Last but not least is the unlockable Paranoid mode, which ups the ante by tossing in purple obstacles that require smashing through.

As incredibly addictive as Goscurry is, I feel like what really drives your adrenaline here is the catchy as can be electro-beat soundtrack from master musician Isak Martinsson(who is currently working on the wonderfully creepy adventure game, Fran Bow), equally as hypnotizing and entrancing as watching the flow of your stylish little rocket ship through each mind-bending stage of twists and turns. An excellent audiovisual combination assaults your senses and is the driving force in your speed and focus as you reach further and further for that final stretch of road.

Goscurry is a game that gets right to the point, avoiding all of the pre-fun bullshit, all of the fluff and filler of other games and diving right into the fun and mayhem. Just zone out, follow the twisting path of the line ahead, and lose yourself to the beat of the music as it electronically charges your mind and body putting you into that nostalgic state of euphoria needed to find the flow.

Relax. Don't Panic. Be Brave!

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