You know what Is amazing to get in a video game? Some fun. Boy does Strafe deliver with plenty of it. Remember the 90’s? Well I don’t since I was born in it, but we’ve all seen the crazy legacy of video games. People run around at 50mph blasting pixels with a range of weapons, for pixel blood to be covering the walls. I wasn’t sure what I was expecting when I first heard about Strafe, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised, and I’m excited to tell you all about it.
I just want to put a warning in to people saying I didn’t hear about this game before launch. So any expectations or marketing hype is all a mystery to me. But from the moment you open up the game, you feel right at home. As soon as you move you get a feel for how fast you can move. Instead of being a steady first person shooter game, you are welcomed into a rogue experience with randomly generated levels. While this kind of experience can be limiting a range of content. It does well to satisfy some quick play sessions, especially if you like to beat your own records or climb leader boards.
The violence is a ton of fun in this game, I mean while not exactly violent per say, it does emphasise killing and gunning down as much as you can. The music compliments this experience pretty well, as you’ll feel the momentum and excitement pulsing through you. In a sense it’s like a call back to doom, while being like modern doom with the moving around and blasting things for fun combo. Meaning fun is your main fuel to play this game, and it does a good job at keeping it going.
Strafe also maintains a high level of self awareness and charm. Clicking on the main tutorial will give you a retro type video with purposely bad directing. The boom mic will pop into shot every so often while the actress tells you the jist of what’s going on. It makes you smile a bit, but it doesn’t last long and your thrown back into the game. I really wish I got to see more of these videos with more tropes and in-jokes.That’s where I come to everything I didn’t like too much about this game.
While being a ton of fun it lacks a key component to make it a game worth buying and gifting to all of your friends. That would be replay-ability. After that first spin around all the menus and weapons you’ll feel like you are playing the same thing over and over despite the fact the game uses random generation as a core feature. Everything just looks too similar and makes it feel like a drag to play longer than a good half hour. After completing it a few times you might still find charm that makes you want to open it up for a couple minutes a day but I couldn’t find that myself.
When it comes to summarising my thoughts and feelings, there isn’t too much I can say due to just an overall lack of content and difference. There is certainty some fun to be had, but you’ll tend to find that in the first hour or so that you play it. After that it becomes, at best, a short distraction from whatever you are doing. But there are better distractions out there to enjoy. The game can be punishing to new players at first which can be a little disheartening and may push away a few people. However I wouldn’t be surprised to find a community of people who really enjoy the game and dedicate time to beating high scores and beating the level fastest. Unfortunately that just wasn’t for me.
On the date of release there seemed to be some performance issues, I have been fortunate enough to not have any issues with the game as far as performance is concerned, and I have noticed some praise towards the dev team for continuing to fix any issues, which I will extend onto them.
The game is fun, but a little repetitive. Scores a 6.5/10 in my books.