pax 2014

Blasting Through PAX With Geometry Wars 3

by Mike Futter on Aug 29, 2014 at 12:47 PM

After a hands-off demo of Geometry Wars 3 at Gamescom, we've finally had a chance to go thumbs-on with the twin-stick shooter. Sierra's coming out party is likely to delight fans of the previous entries, as developer Lucid Games (made up of many Bizarre Creations team members) looks to score a hat trick.

Our demo was an extended look at the single-player content, across multiple geometric shapes (spheres, cylinders, cubes, and a peanut) blasting enemies and building a multiplier for killer scores. After our last demo, many readers were curious about the two-dimensional play of the first two titles.

As we mentioned, that's back, and it's seen some improvements. Those maps twist and undulate, making for a visual delight. My fear was that they would feel bland after zipping around the blind curves of the other levels. Instead,the flatter planes present their own challenges.

We also played around with two different drones. One fires at incoming enemies, while the other darts out to ram incoming foes. In addition to smart bombs, your drones can be tasked with special abilities, like a map filling turret blast and a series of explosions.

Geometry Wars' signature difficulty is certainly intact. Even when competing for a high score against the clock with unlimited lives, the penalty of wiping out nearby enemies (and losing the multiplier burst) hurts.

It was hard to get into the bullet hell zone on the PAX show floor, but when Geometry Wars 3 is out later this year, I suspect I'll have no problem. A headset, a darkened room, and working through the single-player and separate co-op campaign with a friend should solve that problem.