Galax-e-mail is a twin stick space shooter where you control a ship that must deliver emails to different locations in the universe. Is the game a Royal Mail or a Royal Fail? (UK postal joke) read on to find out.
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Galax-e-mail is set in a randomly generated universe which sees your ship collecting and delivering an email while destroying all the enemy bases to complete the level. The levels are set in a kind of open maze like design with electric barriers acting as walls. A handy arrow will point the way to the next enemy base, which once all destroyed will open the exit. The level designs are not overly challenging and you will rarely get lost, but you will sometimes get a bit confused on how to get to a base as the barriers block the obvious path.
Your ship is changeable between classes of ships which have advantages and disadvantages, a fast ship with weak weapons, to a slow ship with powerful weapons. The medium ship is useful for small scale combat, the slow ship is vital for attacking the bases, the fast ship is useful when travelling to the next base. The bases spawn enemy ships and should be destroyed before attacking the base as they are quite strong and can withstand quite a few shots. Other obstacles to get in your way include meteors which break into smaller chunks and whirlwinds which suck in and spit out your spaceship sending it into a random direction.
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You only get one life to start with in this game but you can collect wingmen which as well as following and fighting with you, also acts as your life system. When you die, your ship explodes and you will take control of one of your wingmen. I like this new twist on the life system and it makes the game more fun as you will need to find wingmen before entering a large battle for the extra firepower and lives.
Power ups are spawned when an enemy or obstacle are destroyed and can have positive or negative effects on your ship. Power ups range from increased firepower and auto aiming, to ship slow downs and reverse controls for a period of time. The variety of power ups are good and the randomness makes you think twice if you should pick them up or not, more often not as it is the dreaded reverse controls 🙂 In addition to power ups, you have a number of special weapons which can be replenished, these are a nuclear bomb, a shield, a useful weapon that destroys an electric barrier and finally a warp which will transport you out of danger to another part of the level.
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Galax-e-mail has an interesting difficulty level design where you can choose the difficulty setting for the following level. There are 100 levels in total, so if you choose the difficulty ‘about right” setting, the difficulty will increase by one level, while choosing ‘effortless’ will skip twenty difficulty levels. There is no option to decrease the difficulty so the game always gets harder but you basically set the pace on how hard you want it. I found this to be a nice change to the normal easy/medium/hard difficulty levels and really makes the game a lot of fun as enemies get more powerful and faster and bases have much stronger defences.
Graphically the game is nothing amazing but they do the job. The sprites are well designed and are easy to see even when in a big battle. The music is a relaxing background space synth theme and adds to the atmosphere, it works better than a repeating music track often found in twin stick shooters. Sound effects are used well, I especially like the boom when a base is destroyed! The game presentation is done well with an old email text style interface giving hints and tips between levels.
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Galax-e-mail brings some good new ideas to the table which makes it stand out from other generic twin stick shooters. The difficulty system allows both novices and advanced players to play the game at their preferred level. While the game can get a little repetitive, the fast paced nature and big battles keep it interesting as you guide your fleet of spaceships to the next delivery. The game costs 240 :MSPoints: and there is just enough to warrant the price compared to other games in this price range. Galax-e-mail gets a thumbs up from me.
More information about Galax-e-mail as well as the trial and full versions of the game can be found on the Marketplace.0