AIRHEART is a twin-stick shooter sort of game developed by BlindFlug Studios, but not with the vast amount of action you would normally expect from one. The game has you take on the role of Amelia, a young woman in the Skyfishing business. She flies her plane and catches as many Skyfish as she can, all the while avoiding the competition who want the fish for themselves, and Amelia out of the way. The game is set to release on October 13th, 2016 for Steam into Early Access.
The game is split into different stages, or layers. These layers are small areas in which you can fly about and find a host of fish to catch and enemies to defeat. Once you have done all you can, or want, you will find a machine on the level which shoots your plane up higher to the next Sky layer, but only if the enemies around it are cleared out first.
The higher up you go, the more difficult and varied the enemies become, but also the richer the rewards. You’ll start fighting more than just other enemy planes, sometimes you’ll come across stationary towers which use different weapons against you or huge floating fortress ships with multiple different kinds of weapons and a huge amount of health. Destroyed enemies occasionally leave behind a few items, such as oil or health, which is greatly needed. The oil goes into the same collection pool as the Skyfish that you catch, and when you return to your workshop, you instantly trade it all for money.
The money you earn in AIRHEART goes towards upgrading and customising your plane. You can buy new parts, craft new parts and find blueprints around the place for your plane. Doing so grants you better stats, such as hitpoints, speed and agility, given to you from different types of parts. You can change the chassis, the engine, the wings and the weapon on your plane, and all of these add up to show you an overall rundown of how good your plane is, giving you an indication as to how well you may do using that plane.
The different parts you can equip make the game easier and allow you to constantly get higher and higher as you go, and it is really noticeable, not simply small little changes that hardly show. For instance, one of the first things you can buy is a new weapon, which changes it from a semi-automatic, relatively weak weapon, to an automatic machine gun which makes attacking enemies and defending yourself a lot easier. They also change how the plane looks, so for those of you out there who care a lot about aesthetics and statistical changes, AIRHEART has you covered.
There are two ways to get back to your workshop. You can choose to leave from wherever you are, which causes you to start flying directly down while having to avoid crashing against every single floating island you’ve gone past. Navigate this drop successfully, and you instantly trade all of your resources for money. The other way is when you lose all of your health you will instantly start to drop, this is a lot harder to control and you can even miss the landing, crashing into the desert below. Regardless, even if you crash land on your landing strip, you will lose all of your resources and you will earn a small amount of scrap from your destroyed plane. Fret not, though, for your plane will be ready for another flight as soon as you wish to depart.
BLOT Gaming recently had the chance to have an interview with Jeremey from Blindflug Studios, the creator of AIRHEART. Jeremy spoke incredibly passionately and deeply about his game, and it shows how much care he and his team have put into it. If you’re interested in hearing what Jeremy has to say about his game, you can check it out here.
Want to check the game out for yourself? You can try out a free demo on the game’s website here. Make sure to check in with BLOT Gaming for a full review of AIRHEART when the game is fully released.