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Alexandre Guimond

Crossfire review

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What could possibly make a classic formula, even better? After all, video games have been in constant evolution and there is a place for innovation even in the smallest forms. Back in the 1980’s, it was common place to see arcade shooters released by several developers. Taito was one of the few Japanese companies at the time, who took advantage of the arcade scene and created several classic games for the platform. Space Invaders came first, followed by Galaxian who evolved into Galaga. From this point on, we would see a lot of clones and spiritual sequels made.

With time you would think that the simple concept behind Galaga would have become revolute. Well, after several decades of proving the exact opposite, it seems like there is always place for inspired titles, even if we think there’s nothing more to improve. Using Galaga’s principle to lay its fundamental basis, Crossfire is the second game from Radiangames to hit the XboxLive Arcade indie section. Since the XBOX360 is quite gifted with a whole bunch of fantastic arcade shooters, let’s see if Crossfire was able to stand apart from the flock.

Seeing how much indie games on XBLA normally go for, it’s not surprising to see the price of entry as affordable (It’s only 3$ which translate into 240 Microsoft points). With that being said, is it really worth the extra couple of points you have lying around? Well yes, it is not only worth it, but Crossfire stands on its own as a challenging and hectic experience.

The game is basically Galaga, however, there are some new features that complement the experience. You have the possibly to warp freely between the top and the bottom of the screen, giving a sense of verticality to the game. With this versatility, enemies are also able to fire upwards, which means that you’ll have to rethink your strategy from there.

Crossfire is divided in a succession of 50 waves, which are simple at first and are led into trickier phases later. From there, the game becomes more like a puzzle game than an arcade shooter. Some enemies will have to be destroyed before others. You’ll be constantly dodging bullets while trying to break the blocks who act like protectors for adjacent foes. It will be frustrating in some cases, since the firing-rate of your enemies will increase, depending on how much you’ve destroyed of them.

The normal mode isn’t too hard to beat, but you will unlock the Turbo and Megawave mode after beating the game for the first time. The extra modes are definitely where is at considering you can also play 2-players coop which makes things a tad bit easier, but all too confusing at the same time.

There are no noticeable flaws to the game, it is very well designed. The controls are sharp, like any other arcade shooters on the console. The big problem however, which is completely circumstantial, it that you will have a hard time dodging the enemy bullets if you are color-blind. It isn’t technically the developer’s fault, but it would have been appreciated if there were more obvious color schemes. Overall if you are an experimented player, you won’t have too much trouble fighting your way through the waves of invaders.

Crossfire is to Galaga what Shatter was to Arkanoid; it is absolutely fantastic, challenging and original. It reinvents the principles around a classic arcade title and makes it even better. There are no gimmicks here, the game controls are sharp and accurate. The warp system works perfectly and the enemies act differently depending on their types. The game is incredibly hard, and you’ll definitely have a run for you money in the additional modes. If you are looking for an amazing arcade shooter with fast-paced action, a great difficulty setting, with a tad bit of puzzling, look no further. Crossfire is the game you need.

Alexandre Guimond
Assistant Editor

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Updated 06-09-10 at 07:39 by SteveSawyer



  1. GameGavel's Avatar
    Wow! That game looks great. Wish I had a 360

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