Thundering beats, ambient moods, and an arsenal of alien-destroying weapons make this week’s Playing Indie a must try. AlienTrap Games Inc’s Capsized is a side-scrolling action adventure set on a distant alien planet. Your ship has gone down and it is up to you to gather the pieces and your crew. And hey, only an entire world of man-eating beasts and territorial alien tribes stands between you and rescue. Bring it on!
The first thing you will notice when launching this game is the music. Heavy tones mix with ambient mixes to provide a perfect background for the entire game. At points I found myself launching the game just to listen to the music. Music isn’t choreographed to the exact experience, but each song seems to fit with everything in the game, making for a truly atmospheric experience.
Capsized is a visually stunning adventure too. While some textures and levels can look similar, there is a distinct feeling of progression as you move through the alien world in search of your objectives. Just when you start getting used to the jungle you move into underground caves. These caves provide an even more unique visual experience, shrouding you in darkness which limits you to a small cone of light off your flashlight. Further on you even travel through a zone where gravity seems to be weakened by the surrounding and increasingly alien-like fauna.
One of the stand out features in Capsized is the ability to use a grappling hook for multiple goals. A chasm of doom lies before you? Grapple the terrain above and use it to sling shot across. Giant boulders blocking your path? Grapple it and pull the obstacle away. Swarms of vicious bugs attacking you? Pick up a stone and chuck it into the swarm for devastating effect. The grappling hook makes for some really fun physics and equally entertaining action. The game even has achievements and an arcade mode based around only using your grappling hook to deal with the opposition.
If shooting your adversaries is more to your liking, Capsized has a nice set of weapons to discover. The basic pistol works great for most alien trash, but wouldn’t you rather burn them with a flame thrower or explode them with an RPG? Lasers, heat seeking missiles and a projectile shooting cannon all make the list of great ways to deal with the swarms of death. Discover a few of the games secret areas and you could even come up with a gun that creates a giant gravity well, sucking all nearby objects and enemies in for to an easy to hit death trap.
Capsized tells the story through comic book visuals during your loading screens, leaving you to stick with exploration and action while in the game. Despite having no cutscenes, the story is visual spot on and produces an interesting and fun arc to all the shooting and rock throwing. If you get sick of the story based campaign, try out the games arcade mode for some additional challenges including AI bot deathmatches, survival mode, armless (no weapons) or time trials. Unfortunately, the only multiplayer function in the game is a split screen duel for the few that enjoy sharing one PC screen.
Overall, Capsized is a great buy. If you enjoy action and great music in a side-scrolling platformer, this game won’t disappoint. You can get it on Steam for $10. If you would like to see more before you purchase the game, check out CapsizedGame.com to watch some gameplay vids and learn more.