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Minishoot’ Adventures PC Review

I am baffled by the fact that Minishoot seems to be the only twin-stick shooter/metroidvania mashup I can find. How is Steam not flooded with hop-ons the same way it’s flooded with Vampire Survivor clones? HOW IS THIS THE FIRST TIME WE’VE SEEN THIS?! It just seems like such an obvious genre blend in retrospect but anything else remotely like it always ends up being ‘navigate the tight caverns full of deadly spikes’ instead of the much more freeing and open way it’s done here. And now that I’ve wrung every mite of content from it, I’m going to need a lot more. I can’t just be left like this without a fix – it’s just so fun and relaxing, I’m already dying for a sequel. Zooming around fighting drifting enemies, racing, solving puzzles, and discovering power ups. Levelling up a skill tree! Metroidvanias feel fresh again and I find that to be incredibly exciting after being overexposed to side-on platformers for so long, making them feel monotonous and unoriginal even when they do do something new. We’ve been spoiled by an abundance of excellence and it has worn us out but now gold has been struck once again and I am so ready for the flood. All thanks to Minishoot’ Adventures.

Starting off as a budding ‘chosen one’ it’s up to you to find the rest of your people (cute little golden ships with blue crystals) and push back the menacing hordes of evil (cute little golden ships with red crystals). Textbook race war. This mostly involves gliding around the areas you can reach with a wonderfully floaty grace only the best of twin-sticks manage to achieve, pinging away any enemies and obstructions in search of buttons to open pathways and unlockable abilities such as being able to traverse water or a speed boost allowing for sweet ramp jumps. With each new upgrade opening yet more paths to explore in whole new map regions and cheeky hidden areas throughout previously visited locations filled with all sorts of other treasures like passive upgrades and collectibles that can be traded for yet more cool new tricks and even lore tablets. That’s right, there’s an actual story here! Not really what I expected at first but it ends up being quite interesting actually by the end, especially if you continue to finish off the game after the main boss fights in search of the true endings. Plus it’s light enough to not be too much of a distraction or a blocker from getting to just play.

Boss Fight

Whether scouting the overworld or delving into a dungeon, the silky smooth controls and incredibly simple systems make the whole experience comforting and joyous. It’s fun enough to just move around, to just be here. It feels good and the game looks and sounds great. Spending time in Minishoot is always nice, even when you’re being driven mad trying to hunt down the secret entrance to an energy upgrade you can just peek out of view. The combat is what really does it for me though, with all sorts of enemy types charging or sniping you whilst others aim to simply fill whatever space you’re fighting in with large patterns of bullets to duck and weave between. Each minor engagement can be a test of your skills if you want to show off what you’ve got but as you grow in strength it also gets easy to simply avoid skirmishes so you can focus on whatever you’re out for. The bosses are varied and increasingly challenging in a nice curve, though even on the hardest difficulty I personally would have liked to have been pushed further, and even more so when it came to the unlockable challenge rooms in the real end-game. I wanted something that would have me go all out – learning hazard models and training my thumbs to handle minute repositions, but that never came and I went out heavy-handedly swinging my way through to the finale.

Maybe it was a little bit too generous to allow the player to constantly re-spec their levels whenever they want, pushing points into range where needed and then ripping them out for extra power or movement speeds at a seconds notice in order to blast down a tough baddie or explode through a race. When I was playing through I really appreciated being able to do this but looking back it was probably this alone that dampened the challenge in a way that lessened my experience. As long as it is possible to win each fight or come out at the top of each race on skill alone, there’s really no need to grant such frivolity. But whilst we’re on the topic I also think the lack of a more interesting or unique map damages the memorability or a game with a title that I have already found myself forgetting several times. It looks cool, don’t get me wrong, but generic desert, forest, and sewer spaces don’t exactly hold one’s attention long-term. Even the power-ups are completely unoriginal, though I did actually like that as a way to bridge the old and the new seamlessly.


Quite the double-edged sword I’d say. The lack of a striking theme or more imaginative toolset hurt the longevity of the title but their simpleness and familiarity help this new, or at least untapped, concept to be immediately accessible and a cinch to just sink into like a warm bath. The classic Zelda-like map to unfurl (and cracked walls to blow open) juxtaposed with the Metroid-esque expansion via usable improvements you get as part of your arsenal instead of just keys to open plain old doors are welcoming mechanics used together in a twist format. Though I suppose that makes it more of a ‘Metr-elda’ or ‘Zel-troid’ over a Metroidvania, since there’s no claustrophobic set of dainty rooms to enclose you, instead remaining a breath of fresh air with big open spaces that beg to be skated around. I’m going to be recommending Minishoot’ Adventures for some time and to pretty much anybody who will listen because it’s a game everybody can enjoy and honestly I may get another playthrough out of it myself in the near future; I’m already feeling the cravings. But I’m also positive that when the inevitable inspirations begin to follow, it will be one of those that end up taking on the mantle for the genre. Whether the two-man studio SoulGame will continue in this space is a whole other question. Though I’d love to see those that opened the doors get their dues, it would be a shame to lock down such creativity to a single niche. Either way I’ll be following them closely in the future to see what they come up with next.

8 out of 10