The once resurgence of retro style games has now become commonplace in the industry. This is most apparent in the indie scene where nostalgia fuels developer’s love for making games more so than any other aspect. Despite countless NES and SNES influenced titles on the market these days, the GAMEBOY has gone significantly overlooked. Although you will occasionally find an obscure game or a few levels in Super Meat Boy, for the most part, the GAMEBOY is commonly pushed aside for the more vibrant sprite work of its counterparts of the “bit era”. However, Alpha Six Productions hasn’t forgotten the little gray bricks and their latest old school title, The Joylancer: Legendary Motor Knight, aims to bring you back to the days of fighting off boredom in the back of your parents’ Toyota.
The gameplay, music, and overall presentation fit the expected homage to the classics, but it is the true feeling of a GAMEBOY title that really gives Joylancer some clout. Attack and jump are all you need and mix those with the directionals for diversity, and you have yourself a set up for Nintendo portable gold. Progressing through each area with a less than straight forward waypoint only adds to how true to form the title feels. Your main attacks double as navigational tools as you charge up your lancer in order to utilize all its capabilities. Slamming trough the ground, spinning sideways through the air, or launching yourself upwards with a giant uppercut are just as offensive as they are tactical. Everything is dictated by how much you charge up the lancer in advance so your fingers will alway be busy, even in slower sections. Mastering these moves are essential to maneuvering around the maps and reaching the titular bosses.
The simple controls and graphical quality harken back to the retro portable days of old, but the team was kind enough to give more modern gamers a chance to customize to their comforts as soon as you start up the game. Simple, modern-day options like rumble and tutorials can be toggled on right from the get go, but purists can be satiated with options for original palettes or classic GAMEBOY color schemes (all activated with buttons and directionals from the title screen just like the GAMEBOY itself). There are even options to simulate flicker and slowdown and it’s all served to you in a fourth-wall-breaking introduction survey.
Joylancer: Legendary Motor Knight is now available on Steam, and for those of you longing for more GAMEBOY action but are too lazy to go out and buy AA batteries, this might just be exactly what you’re looking for. You can also grab it for ten bucks from Alpha Six’s website where they also offer a free demo and game guide for those still weary of the quality. They’ve also just launched a big update for the game to ensure upkeep as things progress. Why not show some support and check it out right now?