Galak-Z is a love letter to those who remember the classic anime that we often use to watch on VHS in our childhood. In fact, each mission is treated as an episode and broken into five episodes to turn into a season. There are four seasons and with each ending of the season there is a boss fight. Playing through this game remind me of Macross and Gundam anime series. With story in same vein of those anime, it’s about rebel force have developed an experimental ship that could turn into a mech in order to turn the tide of the war against the Imperials.
Galak-Z gameplay is solid with each button function being useful and you need to use all the skills in order to survive. Boost, strife the ship around, back-boost, and transform into a mech to survive. Using the boost makes loud sound and the sound aura for your ship grows. The louder it is, the easier the enemy detects and attacks you. Slow movement helps you stealth through the danger. Lastly there is Mech-style mode where you transform your ship into an awesome mechanize robot to fight. In the Mech-style mode you may slash enemies with the sword, grab and throw them to environments. Utilizing all the skills is key to surviving.
Upgrading your ship stronger, requires exploring places in missions to unlock items in the shop. There are free upgrade and supplies (health, missiles, currency) in missions as well. There are awesome upgrades to get and utilize at your disposal. At the beginning of each mission you may change your load-out to what you preferred to use.
If you die in this game you have to start over at the beginning of the season again without any upgrade customizations for your ship. Only one way you could replay mission where you died is if you have five Crash coins. This will still lose all your upgrades but you may find it in your mission to collect back. Though it sound harsh, it’s not that bad because Crash coins have another function where if you have leftover coins, you may trade it with shop to get 500 salvages (currency for upgrade) for each coin. This will work when you start a new season as it is the only thing that carries over from last season along with your health damage. On the PC however, there is a new Arcade mode where there are per-mission checkpoints and no restarting all over from episode 1.
Play this game either all out attacking or go through stealthily. Both will offer challenges in their own way, one is that enemies are mostly stronger than you; the other is enemies patrol where you extract to complete the mission. Best way is to do both, where you attack enemies from behind and destroy them before they could kill you. Baiting enemies into hazardous environments and destroy them. Another way is luring enemies like the Imperials to distract and attack other factions (Bugs and Raiders).
Overall Galak-Z provided an enjoyable time especially with the rogue-lite gameplay, humorous dialogue and nostalgia. The procedurally generated levels are not as varied but thanks to the A.I. enemies being challenging it is fun to come back to play more. It is a challenging game where you will die but it is possible to accomplish. If you want an easier version the PC Arcade Mode makes it more accessible to complete the game if it is too challenging. If there is a sequel in the future I hope there are more variety of levels and more mission variety. If your a fan of anime/mech and arcade lover this is a must play title on your list. Questions or thoughts let me know in the comments below.
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Developer: 17-BIT Publisher: 17-BIT
For Fantasy Violence, Mild Language
Released On: Aug 4,2015 (PS4), Oct 29, 2015 (PC) Platforms: PS4, PC
Players: 1 Price: $20