Review: Mothergunship – One big momma

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Mothergunship isn’t just your average FPS title, rather it’s about big robots, lots of bullets, and a whole lot of explosions going off at once. Welcome to the spiritual successor to Tower of Guns that features crafting your very own weapons, blasting your way through massive hordes of robotic foes and fighting your way to the Mothergunship in order to save all of humanity


Pros:
+
A plethora of customizations to choose from keeps the game entirely fresh
+Enemy actions are frantically paced, never allowing for a repeated pattern
+Dialogue is absolutely hilarious, allowing the story to remain rather enjoyable

Cons:
-Losing entire builds mid-mission to death is a bummer
-While rooms are procedurally generated, enemy variety does need expanding upon


Editor’s Note: Please note that this is currently a review in progress and the final score and or review could be changed at a later date.


I’m not sure what came first. The ringing in my ears, the splash damage from my massive rockets, or the fact I’ve fired off several hundred rounds of ammunition without a hitch. Well, I’m sure the scorch marks on my armor would say that I do indeed know which came first, but to what order they will tell you these came first? No one will ever know. Whether it’s from my flamethrower, the lava pit, my gun that shoots lightning bolts, or the giant ass spiked ball launcher that’s hooked to the right side of my customized “death machine”.

But I’ve been hard at work you see. I’ve wrecked my way through 15 missions, some side, some leading towards my prime directive: Destroy the MOTHERGUNSHIP. These alien arseholes haven’t gotten a clue what is coming their way, but what they I do know, they’re preparing for something and they’re preparing for something big. Just not as big as my damned gun, that’s for sure. I’m pretty sure the DOOM Slayer is already looking around trying to figure out how he gets a gun like mine. If only I could show him my workbench and how it works.

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You see, that’s my entire experience with the indie title MOTHERGUNSHIP by developer’s Grip Digital and Terrible Posture Games. Build a massive gun, use said massive gun to eliminate any threat that stands between me and my final objective. The only difference between this game and shooters of the past? My missions are segmented, forcing me to head back to my base of operations, leveling up my gear, picking out what stats I want to improve, checking in with my fellow humans and then heading off to once more lay siege against the MOTHERGUNSHIP and its forces.

Unlike other high-profile franchises (ahem, we won’t say names), MOTHERGUNSHIP isn’t going to be concerning itself with a Battle Royale mode, a seamless always-online experience, or pay-as-you-go microtransactions. No, this game doesn’t care about that approach. Rather, it cares about its explosive bullet-filled experience that sees players take off across countless missions, smashing, shooting, and blasting their way through waves of robotic enemies that you’d almost wish was apart of Skynet’s forces.

At its very core, MOTHERGUNSHIP attempts to avoid default weapon designs, giving players a chance to enjoy their own variant of a K’NEX style weapon system, one where players can erect their own vision of a robot killing machine. Every weapon you see on screen is something you may have seen before, but this time around, they’re designed by the player. Not by some development team deciding what your dream weapon should or should not be. The only limitation in this game? Making sure parts don’t collide with one another.

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That’s your end-game goal though. Build the most lethal weapon you can, tear waves of enemies apart as quickly as possible. This way you can earn in-game currency, health, and weapon energy as its jettisoned into the air from a fallen foe. But missions aren’t as stagnant as you may think. Sure, all your objective is – is to proceed to a designated staging mission. Clear the base, kill the boss, or obtain as many parts as possible. While this sounds easy, levels do become increasingly more difficult in this first-person shmup.

Even with my hours invested in the game, completing side-missions a few times over and then finally making my way to my main-story mission, I’ve had a lot of deaths. I don’t mean just one or two – I mean a lot of deaths. While there is certainly no doubt about my skill at FPS titles, I have actually begun to struggle with MOTHERGUNSHIP as my story progresses. I’ve seen missions start me out on a difficulty of 3.3 with only a machine gun and rocket launcher in tow while another may greet me with the inability to take anything at all and forcing me to use my bare fists in the first wave or two.

By the time I cleared them both, here I was, standing in a shop, staring down the parts it had to offer. Before I knew it, I was using the few coins I’d obtained over the course of my last assault before moving on, grabbing what I needed and heading into the weapon crafting system, which surprisingly enough, is a rather intuitive affair. The UI doesn’t hesitate to show how each part connects together, often indicating what can and can’t be placed together by the part being outlined in green while invalid is put on display as a massive red outline of parts colliding together and causing the function to be rendered inactive.

The whole point of this game? Learning to experiment. Learning to find what is best for you and ultimately learning what is best for you. It’s a game all about experimentation, survival, and dusting off your “twitch shooter” capabilities in order to proceed through the game. Over time you will find that your ability to proceed through the game will be become a bit more fleshed out when finding what works best for you. While combat is the games biggest focus, the gameplay itself is smooth as one would hope. Left trigger shoots your left gun, your right trigger shoots your right gun.

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Even if you build super powerful guns, Mothergunship isn’t just about building the biggest bang for your buck that you can. Rather, it’s also about awareness, smooth gameplay mechanics and challenging the player during the course of the game. Some levels will actually be rather forthcoming to rapid fire guns while others will benefit more off well-placed rockets that make a blast. Luckily, no matter how you approach the game, it’s always rewarding, it always has something to offer and it isn’t ashamed at just how much it wants to indulge people into using the creativity they might have lying inside of them.

But if you are looking for a game that isn’t about shooting the Hell out of every robot insight, smashing your way through countless waves and ultimately looking for something of an in-depth story, you are going be setup for one major letdown. Not because the game isn’t good by any means, but rather, because there’s nothing more than a dense story and a game that focuses on its bullet hell induced moments. Sure, there’s commentary that’s as funny as ever and a room covered in what one could consider a digital STD, but besides that? There’s nothing as far as a story is concerned if you aren’t one for a few good one liners and a nonsensical laugh.

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The only issue with this game is that death can be frustrating. It means starting missions entirely over as mentioned before. Even the limited stages can be a bit daunting at first, but the challenges they have to offer are never the same. Sure, you may be a bit shocked to see a few tilesets get reused in the game, but not in a sense that the game will be a dumbfounding experience. Rather, this is a game to write home about for those who love games with replayability, endless options of fully customized guns and endless hordes of robotic foes.

Thankfully, the games enormous robotic bosses do keep the game fresh. They do keep the game fun and they break away the monotony that does appear once in a while due to some room structures being re-used over and over again. The only thing outside of building guns, seeing if you can survive the increased difficulty is the upcoming cooperative play campaign that will make the constant sense of progression feel unique, rewarding and downright great to play.

MOTHERGUNSHIP – PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One
Developer(s): 
Grip Digital, Terrible Posture Games
Publisher: Grip Digital
Release Date: Available Now
Cost: $24.99

 

If repetition isn’t a turn off for you, then let the countless hours of destruction beckon you to them and consume you as you begin building your tools of destruction and venture forth to take on the MOTHERGUNSHIP its very self and save humanity once and for all.


Our review is based upon a retail version that was provided to us by the publisher of the game.  For information about our ethics policy please click here.


 Final Score: 7 out of 10


About the Writer(s):

dustin_batgr_prof

Dustin is our native console gamer, PlayStation and Nintendo reviewer who has an appetite for anything that crosses the boarders from across the big pond. His interest in JRPG’s, Anime, Handheld Gaming, and Pizza is insatiable. His elitist attitude gives him direction, want, and a need for the hardest difficulties in games, which is fun to watch, and hilarity at its finest. You can find him over on Twitter or Facebook.

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