Gastro Force (XSX) Review with stream

Playing as lone soldier tasked with fighting an army of aliens in space, Gastro Force is a straightforward retro FPS but with a player friendly mapping system.  

Unfortunately, Gastro Force is unplayable for me because I am a Y-axis inverter and there is no option to invert the controls in the options menu. Even if this is a budget release, not having this basic gameplay option, especially in a FPS released in 2023, is unacceptable. Not only did I struggle to beat the first stage because of this, I got motion sickness along the way.

However, if you are a non-camera inverter, then I can see Gastro Force as being a pleasant, yet simple retro style experience. With no need to reload, no jump option, and one button to shoot, it really can’t get much simpler. The optional dash move is also a nice addition, but the best part is the real time mapping system. Almost like the mapping system found in Super Metroid or later Etrian Odyssey games, squares are filled with colors as you navigate the environment. This makes it easy to see where you have gone, indicate where you should go, and where a secret might be. Since the retro visuals sort of make everything look the same, this mapping system really makes the game playable and what it is. I wish more games did this because it makes the experience all that much player friendly. Then, if you want, the map can be removed with the tap of a button.

Speaking of retro visuals, Gastro Force hits the nail on the head with this purposely pixelated visual style. I personally love these old timely sprites that harken back to the days of DOS titles. The generic rock music that continuously plays no matter what you do also helps carry the experience too.

In other words, it is a shame this game is unplayable for me due to the lack of an invert camera option because it seems like a more casual retro first person experience; hopefully this basic option will get patched soon. Not having multiplayer seems like a missed opportunity too, but this is a budget friendly game, costing under 10 bucks. So as long as you don’t need an invert camera option, Gastro Force is solid option for those looking for a mid-90s FPS experience.

SCORE: 5/10

Don’t Forget About: Chex Quest

Better Than: some First Person Shooters on GBA

Wait For It: a port of Duke Nukem Advance on modern platforms

By: Zachary Gasiorowski, Editor in Chief

Twitter: @ZackGaz

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