Arcade games always hold a special place in my heart. I love going to Dave and Buster to play some of these new arcade games and spend hours on them. When I play this game, I often think to myself, “How cool would it be to have one of these at home?” And now thanks to the power of technology, you can have some of those arcade games on your consoles. Atari launches storm 4000 on the Nintendo Switch, but should you play it at home or just leave this game at an arcade store? Let’s find out.
Developed by: Jeff Minter & Llamasoft
Published by: Atari
Released: March 22, 2022 (Atari VCS, PC, Playstation, Switch, Xbox)
storm 4000 is a space shooter where you control a claw-like ship inside the prisms and your objective is to destroy everything and anything that comes your way. This kind of gameplay reminded me a lot of Galaga if Galaga was in 3D. The game in Storm 4000 is quite simple; you’ll spend all your time shooting objects, collecting power-ups, and trying to beat your own score. The shooting felt very responsive and the power-ups were very helpful, but that was all dragged down by how busy the screen gets with every explosion and every kill. I had a really hard time trying to keep up with everything that was happening on my screen. If you’re playing this game in handheld mode, all I can say is, “good luck.”
Storm 4000 comes with two Survival mode and Pure mode and aside from the number of lives you start with, these game modes are very similar. Not only do the modes feel similar, but the ‘levels’ you clear in your playthroughs feel equally similar. In one of my first playthroughs, I didn’t even know I was progressing levels until I saw that on the bottom left of my screen. Now a game like this would benefit from an online scoreboard to challenge your friends or people around the world who might be playing the same game; after all arcade machines all had dashboards but Storm 4000 does not have this feature. For the kind of game Storm 4000 is, an online dashboard feels almost essential and I hope the developers add that in future updates.
Heavy in wedges, light in content
With the number of games coming out right now, I can’t see myself going back to Storm 4000. This kind of arcade game in my opinion works better in an Arcade store than it does on the Nintendo Switch. The gameplay that is here is very good, but the lack of content makes me not want to go back to this game. I get that arcade games tend to be light on content, but when a game is priced $20, I expected a little more Storm 4000. If you’re a fan of old school arcade games, you’ll have fun with this, but don’t expect to be blown away by this retro game.