I was a big fan of shooters as a kid – I’m not talking Quake, Doom and Wolfenstein – I’m talking Duck Hunt and Time Crisis, games where you physically held the gun. A-10 is that, except on a whole other level. A-10 grants you two weapons – and it’s your choice as to which you choose to fight with, either two blasters, two lasers, or one of each. Before you begin you’re presented with a menu, allowing you the choice of Practice (endless), Time, Survival and Attack modes. Depending on which mode you choose you’re either racing against the clock, being shot back at or just trying to hang in there for as long as possible. So, what makes this different from every other shooter out there, what distinguishes it?
The ability to dodge and a 360° playing field.
When those laser streaks come towards you, step left, step right, duck, weave, dodge. A-10 is a room scale shooter, meaning wherever you’ve set up your mat/floor space, that’s your platform – and you can move anywhere on it. This adds a whole new dynamic to the normal run of the mill shooters. Like the run of the mill shooters, simply aim down to reload. Pushing the VIVE centre top button allows you to switch weapons mid-game to change up your play style – with the blaster being a fast shooting multi-blast weapon and the laser being a direct fire semi-automatic weapon.
The game is beautiful – and just looking around at the highly detailed environment would be stunning enough, then you’re greeted with your “foe” a variety of floating, dashing, twirling space satellites and debris that appear from the portals around you and either rush at you, or dash passed you – firing off lasers as they go. The game’s 3D models and artistry are amazing – and you’re genuinely enjoying the view every second of the experience.
A-10 is well designed, and feels responsive – movements in-game are very mirrored to your real life ones – and we never really felt a moment where it was out of sync or delayed. Hit collision was the only issue we struggled with – sometimes we felt we’d easily dodged a blast and got struck – other times we thought we’d been hit but it was a clear miss. However, still being in the extremely early phases I wouldn’t be surprised if this was cleaned up with an update.
Should you buy? At only $4.99 USD ($6.60 AUD) you’d be mad not to pick this up. Excellent for a fun time-killer, excellent for improving reflexes and hand-eye coordination, this game is a steal and is thoroughly enjoyable. Hell, even if you leave it running for the upbeat modern soundtrack, still worth it.
A-10 is available on the HTC Vive via Steam.