Ares Omega, developed by Selenion Games, is a top down shooter with rogue-like elements and stages based gameplay. Running through a seemingly endless facility to destroy all robots inside and shut down the dangerous prototypes is the main mission. Being their first game, Ares Omega isn’t the most polished or the flashiest but it does bring to the table quite a bit of content for you to blow up.
There isn’t much of a story to this game, you are sent to a remote military base on Mars which is currently in rebellion with all the Robots and prototypes inside going haywire and killing anything they see. Taking the base by force is your only task, going in with minimal weapons to start off with but gaining more as you go deeper.
The main run of the game will last around 3-4 hours, depending on how many times you die or head back to buy new weapons or unlock new skills. Once you have completed the 11 floors there will be a harder Plus Ultra mode unlocked with no checkpoints between stages.
Ares Omega is rather easy to come to grips with control wise, WASD for movement and mouse for aiming and firing your weapons, 1-5 for swapping between your guns or using the mouse wheel. You can reload by shooting an empty gun or pressing R, F to punch enemies, boxes and walls and G for grenades. Finally you can eat a load of pills from med kits with Q.
As you go through each stage, which is procedurally generated when the level loads, you will destroy robots and gather up coins from their remains. Each kill gives you experience based on the stage, 10 per stage so at stage 11 you get 110 exp per kill, with your character levelling up after a certain amount gained. As you level up you will get more shields, health and skill points to unlock better aim, ammo capacity or increasing your health or shields more. The gold is spent on weapons before you start a new run of the complex.
Since the levels are procedurally generated the difficulty can take wide jumps, from short stages allowing you the ability to conserve ammo in comparison to longer stages that give you more experience but leave you with little in the magazine. As you go from stage to stage you will end each one with defeating a major Boss, possibly getting a checkpoint (Stage 1, 3, 5, 7) you might find that you will need to leave the game and restart to assign your skill points and buy higher grade weapons.
Overall Thoughts and Feelings
Sadly, Ares Omega really reminds me of a Student Game, from the quality of the graphics and gameplay to the feeling it gives off. The top-down view combined with the animations feels rather sloppy and doesn’t fill you with the passion of battle the game tries to demonstrate. Almost becoming a bullet hell at later stages, this game needs more polish to compete in the current market of games. The linearity doesn’t help either, besides the ability to take several turns in the maps all you do is shoot robots for most of the game.
The music is mostly non-existent, with most of the maps only having ambient sounds and music kicking in during the menus and boss battles. Filling the entire map with emptiness slows the entire pace of the game down drastically, making those times where you are searching for the end teleporter drag on even more. Again the lack of polish is shown here, adding into the other faults the game has scattered around it.
The game is stable for most of its runtime, however fps does drop at later levels with all the projectiles and explosions going off. I encountered a game crash bug about 6 times, which closed the game when hitting an end-stage-portal and halting my progress, becoming quite frustrating when it meant I had to repeat 3 stages at a time.
Overall Ares Omega gets a 4/10, it is passable and enjoyable for the first run through but with the lack of music, story and replayability there isn’t much going for the game. There is a harder difficulty to run-through but at level 45 you have all the skill points you need so you won’t be gaining much more than a couple more weapons. Fixing the bugs, adding some more content into the game on top of some music would improve this game immensely.