Bullet hell shooters have constantly taught us that no matter how good you are at a game, no matter how many hours you put in, no matter your achievement score or trophy count, there will always be a genre of game that will beat you into the ground and make you beg for mercy.
Clouphobia is a game resurrected from the early 2000’s, where games didn’t hold your hand and help you through every little problem. Instead, it takes a step up from normal bullet hells and gives you an objective in addition to the general “Don’t die” mentality of the genre. In addition to keeping yourself alive and alert at all times, you’re also defending an unseen mother ship, and any enemy that leaves the screen other than being blown apart by you causes damage to her. If that wasn’t enough, you also have a time limit to contend with, and must defeat the level boss before the timer ends.
All those with weak hearts or who get angry need not apply.
At the start of Cloudphobia, as with all bullet hells, you’re given an option on difficulty and the mech type you’d like to use. Your first and most common pick is PLG-90, the laser rifle mech that excels in distance fighting and clearing out enemies quickly across the entire screen. If you’re looking for more of a challenge, you’re able to take on the role of Nullpunktur, the vibroblade mech. Nullpunktur has no projectiles, and uses only a sword as his weapon. This allows him to protect himself, but requires to be close to all of the action. Each character is outfitted with 8 missile packs that should be used sparingly or during appropriate situations.
After choosing your mech, you’re thrown right into the action. The game starts you off slowly on level one, giving you a moderate amount of time to get used to the action and speed in which the enemies come flying at you. Whichever character you decide to choose for your mission, your goals remain the same; protect yourself and the mothership, get to the boss as quick as possible, shoot for the highest score. At the end of each level, your score is assessed and you gain back a percentage of your health, the mothership health, and your missile packs.
As you continue through the game, new obstacles arise to stop you from reaching your goals. From simple enemies that closely resemble the ship from one of the oldest games, Meteor, to ships that fly in and transform to a mech not unlike your own to ruin your day, your eyes never stop moving through the missions. Even the bosses, which seem to have a pretty easy pattern will sometimes come with new tricks you don’t expect, this game will test your skills as a gamer and your reaction times without ever letting up.
The game company Rockin’ Android is well-known for their series of difficult games. Fans of other bullet hells on Steam may be familiar with the game collection “Gundemonium”, another bullet hell series on the cuter side graphically, but also just as frustratingly difficult.
As a gamer, I quickly fell in love with Cloudphobia as a challenge and a game. The visuals that make you feel like you’re truly in a war, the mechs fighting against you and knowing you could die at any time, and the added objectives beside the basic “stay alive” mentality make it quite a bit of fun to play and constantly retry. If you’re a fan of a challenge and going to the point where you want to rip your hair out, this is the game for you. If you’re the kind of person who gets angry easily and thinks that playing this game will send your computer flying out a window at mach 4 out of rage, it may be best to try a different game.
For your chance to play Cloudphobia make sure to listen to the radio this week for a free game code! Announcements on what times will be made on our Twitter and Facebook between Monday through Friday.