Developed by Chimeric and published by Pixeljam, Nova Drift is an action-oriented space shooter. The game is still in early access but there’s already enough content here to keep you busy for literal hours on end. So, what is it about this title that will grab you?
In Nova Drift players will take on the role of an ever-evolving bio-mechanical spaceship. Games are quick in Nova Drift and there are plenty of rogue-lite elements on offer in this game. If you aren’t a fan of repetition to unlock things in video games, you might find yourself getting tired of the game’s formula after a while. There is however a myriad of randomly generated waves to keep you interested as well as multiple “Challenge” modes on offer in the game.
If you are a fan of rogue-lites, Nova Drift’s surprisingly deep strategic gameplay involving creating the perfect ship build to annihilate foes, is extremely enjoyable. Each run will be different and each run will deliver a lot of fun as you experiment with different builds.
Players can load up the “Endless” mode and immediately get to battling enemy forces. Mysterious ships will appear out of the void and you will have to fend them off with whatever weapons you may have. Defeat enough foes and you will unlock an upgrade. You can choose to upgrade your ship’s base gear or you can select from a range of upgrade mods that provide bonuses. Choose your upgrades carefully though. Some builds are vastly different from others and changing something like your ship’s body type to a form such as a carrier, over a smaller faster type, can have a drastic effect on how long you’ll survive.
At its core, Nova Drift is all about risking your ship with upgrades while taking on waves and waves of enemies. Survive long enough and you’ll eventually face off against massive boss enemies. These boss battles are extremely challenging but incredibly enjoyable. Beating a boss enemy feels like a massive achievement and is super satisfying.
Nova Drift, therefore, combines what’s can be described as “bullet hell” with numerous rogue-lite elements in a neon-lit gorgeous arcade-esque package. Enemy designs are varied and watching projectiles fly across the screen looks incredibly flashy. The sheer number of upgrades and mods available all look great in action and there is a visual feast for the eyes to be had in each unique run through the game’s “Endless” mode.
The soundtrack does the job of keeping you amped throughout the action and we’re hoping that additional tracks are added to the game throughout its development. Graphically, Nova Drift looks great despite featuring primarily glowing lights. This is especially true during some of the later waves, when your ship is extremely well-equipped and firing off numerous different projectiles with various effects tacked on. Late game you’ll be facing off against literal hordes of enemies and it really does get chaotic. This however is where it truly shines since both skill as well as sheer blind luck can factor into your inevitable success or failure.
Nova Drift is a still a work-in-progress game but even in its current form, it gets a recommendation from us. There’s well over 100 hundred mods available for your ship. You’ll unlock more of these with each run through the game and there’s a lot of solid space shooting bullet hell action gameplay to be had here. If you are a fan of games such as Geometry Wars, Asteroids or Flow, Nova Drift will appeal to you.
Nova Drift is currently in early access (03.03.2021) and can be purchased on Steam here for £11.39
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