Initial Release: 17 October 2017
For a game with such a unique selling point, Megaton Rainfall finally offers the experience that so many VR consumers will have been waiting years for. And at such a scale!
Developed by Pentadimensional Games, Megaton Rainfall could be Playstation VR’s most intriguing debut. In a world where super heroes dominate the big screen, permeating our media and our culture, the experience of emulating the super hero is still a tertiary experience. Even in mainstream gaming, playing as super heroes and gods we are still watching over the shoulders of our heroes, merely a guiding hand as we help our heroes along their story. We still lack many games that put you in the shoes the super hero itself, Megaton Rainfall seeks to change this, Megaton Rainfall seeks to make you into a god.
The game takes many of its narrative cues from another famous superhero. You are an alien. The fact you don’t belong on this planet has gifted you super human abilities. You can fly, explode into the stratosphere. You can blast raw energy from your hands. And as the game progresses, you will unlock your true potential.
The narrative is kept relatively minimal. Foreign invaders from space (NOT space invaders) have come to …invade your planet… from space, and of course, you have to stop them. Thankfully you are no longer a mere mortal. In the world of Megaton Rainfall you can fly across cities in moments, ascend into the starry sky and plummet straight back into the earth. You are strong and fast, you are capable, you are a hero and it is liberating.
As you complete more missions you will gradually unlock more powers. These involves abilities such as enhanced speed, laser sight, time control and epic energy attacks to name a few. As a superhuman, death is not on the cards for you. But the game ends when the cities you protect and the civilians therein take too much damage. But as the game progresses and you become stronger, enemies adapt and become more of a challenge to keep the game in balance.
One of Megaton Rainfall’s most amazing assets is its size. Not only can you fly around the world, visiting multiple cities, most based on actual places, you can descend to floor level and below. There are pedestrians, automobiles, life. And when you realise you can blast off into the sky and watch them become tiny ants as you leave earths atmosphere you realise this is more so much more than open world. It is an open universe.
Earth is not your only option here. The best part, no loading screens. Flying through the rings of Saturn and watching the rings slowly form into rocks and clusters is wonderful. The sheer epic proportions of the universe from a studio of this size is a massive undertaking, and it’s pulled off with great success.
The mission structure plays similar to that of a wave shooter, destroy the onslaught of enemies before the city takes too much damage and you will succeed. Fail to do so (or cause too much collateral damage yourself) and that will result in a mission failure. You are ranked for your attempt and the rank and score is uploaded to the leaderboards. Different enemies appear as you progress and it’s up to you to find their weak spot. Most enemy types are manufactured with a giant red self destruct button so it really isn’t too hard to get to grips with how to take them down. It’s whether you will be able to keep up with them that’s the real challenge and they are not planning on making it easy! However enemy types are varied. Starting with small and speedy UFO types, soon you will fight giant sky scraper eating worm bots. There are even enemies that can hide in plain sight camouflaged as buildings. The game’s ability to keep you guessing and make this so much more than a wave shooter is well implemented and goes a long way at ensuring longevity.
Graphically the game does well. Certain things have been given more attention than others. There are some wonderful ethereal projections and ghostly spiritual power ups that look beautiful. Certain things like cars and pedestrians have a serious downgrade. You clearly weren’t expected to be spending much time at ground level but it’s a small trade off for the fact they even managed to have pedestrians in it. There is so much to see and explore. Buildings crumble pretty well under pressure and destruction and kinetic energy blasts make a great impact (Go and make your mark on the moon, that should be a game in itself!). And this game is really more about the experience, to which point the graphics provide a decent level of immersion.
The soundtrack however. Is nothing short of spectacular. Booming blockbuster worthy scores and eerie but beautiful sci-fi electro music accentuates a wonderful experience. It’s the sort of music you would want to listen to outside of the game. A particular highlight is your first trip around the Earth. These smart decisions to implement sharp futuristic sounds really give Megaton Rainfall a sense of grandeur and spectacle that really helps to bring pace and drama to the action.
With a game that strides to achieve so much, there will always be a few downfalls. Sometimes textures can be blurry and there is a little pop up which can make navigation difficult when you are speeding around the world at mach 8. The game has a ‘look at what you want to fly towards it’ aiming system which is great, however sometimes it means looking down your nose at a target. And sometimes that can have a result of double vision.
As appealing as the prospect is that you can leave earth and explore the most outer edges of space, beyond a handful of collectables, there really isn’t a lot to see… but maybe that’s not a bad thing. It is space after all!
For a game with such a unique selling point, Megaton Rainfall finally offers the experience that so many VR consumers will have been waiting years for, and at such a scale! You would be surprised to find out the game costs a meagre £12.99. With so much to experience at such a price, sure it may have some minor flaws but with such unique and fun gameplay, a great soundtrack and extra modes after completion, how can you deprive yourself the chance to see what lies at the edge of the universe?
Verdict- 8 Out Of 10
We were provided a copy of the game by the publisher for review purposes