Orbital Bullet is self-described as a “fast-paced 360 degree action-platformer with rogue-lite elements, where all actions take place in a circular pattern”. That’s pretty much self-explanatory right? So does this game that’s currently in Early Access deliver a lot of enjoyment and is it worth picking up right now while it’s still undergoing development? I booted it up to answer these questions and the results were pretty damn good.
Orbital Bullet kicks off with players taking on the role of an unnamed soldier that awakens from a chamber and has to fight for their survival against various bug-like monsters. The main selling point of the game being the circular patterned level designs.
As the soldier that just awakened, players will slowly but surely make their way through the worlds of Orbital Bullet. Each level is procedurally generated and there are multiple planets on offer in the game. Players will fight their way through ring-shaped levels and face off against boss enemies on a special boss floor.
The level design in Orbital Bullet is excellent with the procedurally generated worlds offering rings that are all different. Some may have a tonne of enemies while others will have a merchant or some traps and branching pathways. When you die, you will respawn back at your base of operations and can upgrade your skills or perks, pick a new weapon and get right back into the action.
Orbital Bullet also features a dynamic skill tree system which allows you to pick between different skill trees while fighting through the levels. This means that you can mix and match various abilities together and get some truly amazing combos. For example, in one run I selected “Laser boots” which allowed me to jump and fire a laser from the bottom of my character’s boots. This instantly changed the way I would play that entire run since I’d make sure to jump and use the laser to do additional damage both to enemies and to the destructible environment on the rings.
Another run, I opted to use a multi-grenade launcher which again, entirely changed my playstyle since I’d have to avoid firing grenades that would bounce back and damage my character. Players can also pick up more than one weapon and can swap between these weapons should they want to. Later on in the game, you’ll also unlock classes, with each of the four classes having their own special abilities which can be upgraded even further too. The engineer class for example can place a turret and hack into terminals without using a keycard. These classes are great and it’s good to see that they introduce even more variation to an already extensive list of gameplay options.
Playing through Orbital Bullet, you’ll immediately be hooked by the game’s core loop. Loading the game up, blasting your way through a couple of levels, dying and doing it again never gets old because each run quite literally is immensely different to the last. While yes, there will be repetition in that you have to fight your way to victory each time, the way you play each run vastly differs due to the procedural generation and the additional unlocks and upgrades you’ve earned. It’s greatly rewarding.
Orbital Bullet also features a banger soundtrack with electro-synth and catchy beats blaring throughout. This adrenaline pumping OST perfectly matches the game’s intense bug-blasting and enemy destruction. The sound effects of the weapons and enemies are also on-point throughout.
Orbital Bullet, while still in Early Access, has already shown me that SmokeStab knows exactly what they are doing and can be trusted completely to make a fantastic video game. If you’re sitting on the fence regarding this game, you can rest assured that you don’t need to. The choice is simple. It’s a resounding yes, you must play this action-platformer shooter. It’s so good!
Grab this game in early access or release through steam here for around £10.29
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