SYNSO - Squid Harder (PC)
Developed & Published by: Bag Full of Wrong Videogames
Released: May 19, 2009 (?)
SYNSO is a trilogy, consisting of the original SYNSO, followed by the sequel, Squid Harder, and finally, an updated revision of the original, dubbed SYNSO:CE. Short for "Squid Yes! Not so Octopus", the SYNSO games belong to a sub-genre more commonly known as an arena-shooter, and less-commonly known as a "twin-stick shooter", a name that is unsuitable for the games, as they lack a second stick.
And there-in lies the brilliance of SYNSO's design, unlike many arena-shmups, which allow free directional aiming, SYNSO, the aptly named hero of SYNSO, can only fire in the direction of his movement. This is an excellent design choice, because it greatly emphasizes the importance of zoning and herding, and makes for a much more difficult (and therefore rewarding) experience.
The original SYNSO was a nine-minute endurance run; a gauntlet of robots, and chattering heads, and other weird shit, proudly presented with that faux-16-bit aesthetic that was all-the-rage in 2009. You are awarded bonuses based on the amount of time you are able to persistently exist (likely not long), and points are awarded for picking up randomly generated gems, as well as shooting down enemies, resulting in retina-detaching explosions of, light, color, sound, and most of all, UI, all the while strange robotic voices whisper cryptic criticisms of the gaming industry.
It's a weird fucking game.
To compensate for the more forgiving time-limit, Squid incorporates a new rank-system, which subtly affects gameplay, encouraging you to replay the game, conquering each stage in a different order.. Although the effects the rank have are not as tangible as in most shooters, each rank rewards you a clever title. DoDonPachi never did that, probably because the guys at CAVE are a bunch of "Pasty Crowners"
|SYSNO : SQUID HARDER|
Seizure Warning: If you suffer from epileptic symptoms, watch this anyway, because it's worth it.