|Release: April 10 , 2013|
|Players: 1 (2+ Online)|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p|
Of course, if all of this doesn’t sound to your liking, you can easily tweak the game to your own personal design. Railguns only? No problem. 1HP insta-death mode? No problem. 5 HP, sniper rifle only, low gravity, semi dark maps? No problem. Want to make you own map? Go for it! ShootMania Storm comes with an extensive suite of modding tools and very few limits. If you don’t like one of the maps in the game, balance it to your own liking. If you want to make your own game type, go ahead. You’ll find races, variations of tag, old school “defuse the bomb” maps, and even an interesting game mode where you play a sniper, shooting at opponents running through a maze. You have an incredible amount of liberty with this game engine, so go wild.
Of course, there are some flaws. For one, there is no single-player to speak of. This, combined with the lack of any sort of progression or level-up system, may give the game a short shelf life for gamers who are used to Call of Duty or even Team Fortress 2. There’s nothing to work toward, no numbers to watch go up, no Skinner box to keep you pressing the food button. The only thing keeping you here is the versus gameplay, and if the community doesn’t keep coming out with new maps or game modes, you’ll have little reason to sign back on and play the same game you played 100 times before.
Graphics and audio also aren’t ShootMania Storm’s strong points. The sound effects are pretty generic, and yes, this does get repetitive. With a game that hinges off community map support, you’ll find that lots of maps look the same and use the same elements that you have seen time and time again. The game runs smoothly, even on low-end PCs, but the arenas you play in feel as generic as the sound design. Your environments are little more than a collection of walls to shoot people in, and you never get a sense of personality that you get from modern day shooters.
Still, ShootMania Storm is a breath of fresh air in this world of carbon-copy military shooters. It’s a new take on an old genre that will satisfy anyone who grew up alongside the early shooters. If you were one of those kids who snuck a copy of Doom onto the PCs in your school’s computer lab, ShootMania Storm will make you giddy. It’s a game that knows what it is: an arcade-style FPS, and nothing more.
Angelo M. D’Argenio
Date: April 11, 2013