We have been following the progress of the independently made video arcade game Skycurser for a while now. If you were like me and bought one of the beta kits then you also have seen first hand how the game has progressed over time, with various gameplay adjustments & bug fixes to bring it a ‘release ready’ level.
The Skycurser June 2017 Update
Level 3 to the game launched about a year ago with another update (that was more about game balancing & fixes) following in November. Between those updated, Griffin Aerotech added WiFi to the mix which made rolling out updates a bit easier (compared to the method of waiting on physical media to arrive in the mail). For those going through beta testing, it has been a process that is different from your typical arcade game but it is still impressive that an independent start-up has been able to offer updates in a way that you don’t always see major manufacturers do.
Pre-orders for the game’s ‘official’ roll out began earlier this year, with kits and dedicated units beginning to ship out this week. That hardware should be on its way to buyers with the latest software build, which adds:
- Gameplay tweaks; the most notable changes I have noticed involves timing between katana slashes; the shotgun blast radius also appears to have received some changes.
- New graphical touches. It is still a 2D game that looks like it came from the mid-1990s but there are more details such as green meteorites falling through the sky on level one, changes to the bosses, new screens in the attract mode, etc.
- Level 4 – Railroad Rampage. This features a new boss called Valga and as you’ll see below, a focus on an infected train
- 2-player co-op. This is one feature I’ve been waiting for as the game cabinet I have has two joysticks. This has confused people before but no longer as they will be able to play together. I haven’t had a chance to play it with someone yet to see how this affects the ‘feel’ of the game. There also appears to be a leaderboard just for this mode; I also like how player one has “Guys” and player 2 has “Dogs” (representing their lives). Nice touch.
More is on the way – Griffin Aerotech is not done with the game yet. That should include global online leaderboards and the two last levels. I’ll continue to keep an eye on this but from what I have played so far, this is really the best version of the game they have rolled out. At first the game was a bit easy – now it is a challenge…a challenge that will take some real practice to “1cc”.
Here’s the current Skycurser build in action with the video available on our Youtube channel.
Have you had a chance to play this game yet? If so, what did you think about it?