Velocity 2X Switch Review

FuturLabs sequel to Velocity has finally made its way on to the Nintendo Switch platform where it is perfectly suited for the indie game revolution that seems to be taking place there. This game may be four years old now, but it feels at home on the Switch and this type of lightweight speed-run shooter makes sense with the portability of the device.

Velocity 2X opens with the same heroine from the first game, Lt. Kai Tana, but she has had some changes and has been newly augmented with cybernetic abilities after the tragedy that befell her at the end of the first game. Lt. Kai Tana has made a new friend, and along with attempting to save their alien race from their evil overlords, the Vokh, and getting to grips with all the new abilities being cybernetic has given her, she has her hands full.

Right from the get go this game throws you in at the deep end with a limited tutorial showing you quickly what the controls do. Then it’s over to the player for swaths of space battles and running around blasting things. This game is a speed-runners dream with a clock in the corner counting every second passed, then giving the player a score out of three at the end of the run showing just how probably bad the time was. These aspects gives the game high replayability for those inclined to try and best themselves or others on the online leaderboards.

The main gameplay focuses on rescuing, killing and collecting. You are saving what I can only assume are other aliens that seemingly float in space surrounded by enemies, collecting crystals when jumping from the spacecraft to running through alien spaceships and killing anything that moves… even if it’s not moving it might be an idea to check it can be killed.

You are mainly piloting the Quarp Jet around space shooting at all the little enemies swarming about, but occasionally when there is a need to shoot certain things in order. You disembark to let Lt. Kai Tana sprint around the Vokh ships collecting crystals in a linear fashion, all to find that elusive last switch to shoot and shutdown the next force field that blocks progression. The controls aren’t too different between the two modes, but this can sometime throw you off as essentially the gameplay is very similar.

The graphics look similar too all the other vertical scrolling shooters in the market that have a comic book style animation and design. It fits well within this game and in turn the style helps the game run very smoothly on Switch hardware.

Soundtrack wise the game is filled with various high BPM tracks well suited to the fast-paced action featured in the game. The music does take a dip during the conversational cutscenes, but even then the game is gearing you up for the next manic fight in space.

I cannot stress enough how Velocity 2X fits perfectly on the Switch, and is no doubt a top quality indie title for the platform. It is refreshing to play a game that isn’t based on procedural generation, and you can really feel the passion that went into creating Velocity 2X, from it’s engaging gameplay and stellar level design, this game shows us all exactly what arcade shooter games can be.

8 out of 10
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