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Cyber Shadow (26/1-2021)


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Been on my radar for so long that this is literally the game that somehow indirectly guided me into finally picking up actual NES development five years ago now, spawned by some forum talk somewhere about which things the game did that could be done on the NES, etc.

Edited by Sumez
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55 minutes ago, fox said:

Digging it so far.  Shadow of the Ninja/Shatterhand vibes mixed with Mega Man X upgrades.  Ripping tunes. 
 

Where is the OST?

I played the first two levels the other night and thoroughly enjoyed them. I was actually a little worried it was gonna be way too easy, but it picked up nicely towards the end of the first level and during the second level. Feat are also a cool feature. I honestly didn't pay much attention to the soundtrack, but I'll listen closer on my next play.

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Played through level 3 last night and it was a lot of fun. Boss was a bit too easy and I beat him on the second try, but still enjoyed it. They introduce a weapon cheekily called the Swag Blade in reference to Ninja Gaiden (NES) speedrunning which is pretty cool. I also got two new abilities. I probably won't do repeat playthroughs, but I think hard mode is probably going to be a better difficulty balance for this game.

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The game does get a lot harder later on, but it's hard to really judge. Because you have infinite lives and deaths really mean nothing, the game remains pretty easy just going for a clear. If you had a limited number of lives and couldn't die as much, it would probably be incredibly difficult, but a lot of that also comes from the fact that the game is extremely long, which kinda makes it impossible to really approach like a traditional arcade clear.

I think the difficulty is also incredibly uneven. Some sections you'll blaze through, while occasionally you'll run into some awkward setup where something just kills you from the opposite side of the screen while you're crossing a huge jump, and you pretty much need to know about it to survive, and there are more than a few places where you're almost encouraged to cheese the enemies.

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Now that I've had some time to think about the game, here's my final verdict (copypasted from elsewhere) in relation to other recent games that seem to aim for the same kinda callbacks.

The further into the game you get, the more of a modern indie "retro" game it becomes. It never quite becomes The Messenger fortunately, but it does peek in that direction. Ultimately it's probably more of a Shovel Knight.
Blazing Chrome is probably still your best bet at a modern game with classic arcade style 2D action sensibilities. Which isn't a bad thing, because Blazing Chrome is fucking good.

Especially at the low price point though, Cyber Shadow is absolutely worth getting. But if you haven't played Blazing Chrome, get that first. 😛 

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1 hour ago, Sumez said:

Now that I've had some time to think about the game, here's my final verdict (copypasted from elsewhere) in relation to other recent games that seem to aim for the same kinda callbacks.

The further into the game you get, the more of a modern indie "retro" game it becomes. It never quite becomes The Messenger fortunately, but it does peek in that direction. Ultimately it's probably more of a Shovel Knight.
Blazing Chrome is probably still your best bet at a modern game with classic arcade style 2D action sensibilities. Which isn't a bad thing, because Blazing Chrome is fucking good.

Especially at the low price point though, Cyber Shadow is absolutely worth getting. But if you haven't played Blazing Chrome, get that first. 😛 

I think all the updates it makes are for the better. It retains some of the classic trial and error style from older games without all the frustration. Also, the movement is just so much better than anything on 8 bit consoles. I haven't played Shovel Knight or Messenger, but I think I actually prefer this to Blazing Chrome so far. Also, the boss fights are a lot of fun.

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Member · Posted

It picks up once you get all your moves.  It can be tricky to outrun those murder walls or dealing with enemies that ask you to parry.  I don't know what section you were talking about with the blind jumps, seems to me most of the time the best tactic is to stop and wait for your moment.  Some of the bosses are pretty rough too but a lot of fun.  The checkpoints are pretty forgiving though and the shop system for refills and options keeps it from getting too frustrating.  Stages are long, with several areas and bosses in some of them, limited lives just wouldn't work well.

Shout out to Blazing Chrome.  It is more run-n-gun like Contra/Metal Slug while Cyber Shadow is going for a more specific action platformer vibe (Batman/Shadow of the Ninja/Shatterhand.)  I love 'em both.

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23 hours ago, DoctorEncore said:

I think all the updates it makes are for the better.

It does things a lot differently, and I really don't see anything that could be perceived as "updates" to anything you'd typically compare this game to from older generations.

Whether it's "better" is definitely subjective at best, but even if you prefer the ability to infinitely bash your head against the wall until you complete an obstacle once only to immediately forget about it, I don't see any way you could argue that it makes for an objectively better product. Tons of games nowadays are already like that, it doesn't have to be every game.

In fact, a lot of the "new things" the game whips up ultimately compete against itself. The first parts of the game and the tail end of it feel like massively different games, like a game and its sequel combined into one. And even though I like them both, I would have appreciated a complete game that played entirely like the earlier parts.
And if you preferred the massively acrobatics-heavy later parts, thinking it is objectively better, wouldn't that make the parts before you unlock those skills comparatively worse? And in that case, why should they take up such a big part of the game? It is pretty evident that the developer had complete confidence in both.

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Finished up tonight. Very cool game. When you have all the movement abilities, some of the levels feel like a puzzle as you slice through enemies at breakneck speed to maintain momentum without ever touching the ground. The bosses are fantastic; some of the best in any 2D action platformer I've ever played. I really enjoyed the throwback style of the final boss as well.

Younger me would have jumped right back into hard mode, but current me will call it good and move on to the next game.

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EDIT: Apparently there is no hard mode? But judging by the fact it says "Mode: Normal" on the continue screen, hard mode is probably coming at some point.

Edited by DoctorEncore
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I was just about to ask you how you managed to access a hard mode 😄

The more I think about Cyber Shadow, the more disappointed I am in it. It's completely unfair towards it, because it's definitely a good game, but it's not what it originally appeared to be. Kind of like The Messenger, but in a less egregious manner.

The new game I'll be putting my faith in is now Steel Assault, which looks like it's gonna be amazing. 

ss_4623a088aca7cfb9af56129f96f53a904a640d48.600x338.jpg?t=1612371808ss_96a725680d5693b68904e657f81c79688fd29a40.600x338.jpg?t=1612371808

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5 hours ago, Sumez said:

I was just about to ask you how you managed to access a hard mode 😄

The more I think about Cyber Shadow, the more disappointed I am in it. It's completely unfair towards it, because it's definitely a good game, but it's not what it originally appeared to be. Kind of like The Messenger, but in a less egregious manner.

The new game I'll be putting my faith in is now Steel Assault, which looks like it's gonna be amazing. 

ss_4623a088aca7cfb9af56129f96f53a904a640d48.600x338.jpg?t=1612371808ss_96a725680d5693b68904e657f81c79688fd29a40.600x338.jpg?t=1612371808

Screenshots look cool! One thing Cyber Shadow definitely lacked is variety in the environments. The color palette is very bland.

I would highly encourage anyone who does play to check out some of the feats. They match up with achievements/trophies, but mostly they're just fun. I really enjoyed going back and completing the pacifist feat in the first area. Most of them are quite well designed and are the best reason to replay areas (outside of speedrunning, which should be fun to watch for this game).

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Member · Posted

Beat Cyber Shadow, great old school throwback.  That last climb up the tower and final bosses deff tested me.
 

10 hours ago, DoctorEncore said:

EDIT: Apparently there is no hard mode? But judging by the fact it says "Mode: Normal" on the continue screen, hard mode is probably coming at some point.

Yeah bit surprised by no new modes unlocked. Maybe a post release update we can get bird guy as a playable character.

49CF1410-6176-4377-957D-03086B976D4A.jpeg

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