There are plenty of side-scrolling shooters out there. Most can be considered fodder, like the unending lines of weaker ships that get destroyed in each level. Sometimes though we come across the boss, whose design and complexity make the games worth playing. Hopefully this new shooter for the Wii and DS will give such an experience.
Developed by Lexicon Entertainment in collaboration with CyberPlanet Interactive, Ocean Commander follows the basic premise: players take control of an amazing prototype ship and have to go it alone against an evil empire threatening to take over the world and as usual a boss at the end of the stage must be defeated to progress. Here though, the ship is actually a submarine in a post apocalyptic Earth, where global warming and underwater volcanoes have melted the polar ice caps. Now, in 3011, 90 percent of our world is underwater and the Earth Federation is sending out the “BS-7001A Metal Fin” to take on the Chaos Empire.
The Chaos Empire and starting the sub’s name with “BS” already has us worried, but the game does seem to have a few things going for it. The sub can take on multiple forms and there 12 upgradeable weapons to look forward to in the 21 stages and 30 levels. Gameplay as well promises a true pick up and play feel for both casual and hardcore gamers. On the DS, players will control the weapon via the touch screen and the Wiimote and Nunchuk will be used for “true 360 degree aiming and precision.”
There will be two modes of play, Mission Mode and Survival Mode. Unfortunately it looks like Ocean Commander is going to pass on two-player co-op, which should be mandatory for this genre by now. The game does look promising with some good backgrounds, but we’ll have to wait till early 2009 to see how this one turns out.