Bullethead


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Rating: 4.1/5 (108 votes)
| Comments (13) | Views (12)

Mikemike-bullethead-screen1.gifThere are three things that distinguish Bullethead from the hundreds of other similar, Space Invaders styled vertical shooters. Number one, it's by Nitrome, so you know it will be a high-production affair, with happy music and sound, and cute, colorful, pixelated artwork. The cuteness here is leavened with equal parts of weird-osity. You control a colorful anthropomorphic blob with an artillery cannon attached to his helmet, as you might expect. The [arrow] keys move, [<] shoots, and [>] jumps, though these controls are configurable. You strafe about the apocalyptic ruins of your home world as you fend off the descending hosts of alien invaders, who seem to favor jury-rigged, gunmetal gray ships and cybernetics, and a generally squishy appearance.

Number two, the variety and inventiveness of the enemy design. This style of shooter is so well tread that true originality is a far-fetched goal, but there were things in Bullethead I had never seen before, such as the critter who drops what I'm going to call the Doom Refrigerator of Extreme Inconvenience That Possibly Also Crushes You. My other favorites include the Death-Star-like vessel and the tiny, gibbering aliens contained within, and the slimy, bouncy, purple critters, possibly best described as Spheroids.

Number three, multiplayer mode. Yes, if you can crowd around your keyboard, you and a friend can play Bullethead together. Default controls for Player 2 are [WASD], [G] to shoot, [H] to jump. It's pretty much just twice the firepower in the same game, but there is something fun about playing with a good friend and yelling at them about what a hapless bungler they are, and hearing the same from them, and hey, that was my power-up, you already got multi-shot! Yeah, well you snagged that shield from me when you were already shielded up! As if such a degree of camaraderie and good feeling was insufficient, you can even give up one of your lives to resurrect a fallen comrade by standing over him and pressing the [down] arrow, leveling the disparity between player skill. Unfortunately all this activity on the screen does make the game lag a bit.

Bullethead is not rife with originality, but it's a well-implemented example of a familiar genre. Clever enemy design and Nitrome's signature style make it a worthy entry.

Play Bullethead

13 Comments

benjabby Author Profile Page May 13, 2010 12:29 PM

You know :)
im really proud nitrome is british :D

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I really am starting to get a bit tired of Nitrome and their games; uninspired is a good word for them at this point. Attractive graphics, not-brain-melting music, and banal gameplay doesn't keep me coming back for more, it makes me wish they'd try for fun rather than pretty.

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May I point out icebreakers was a rather fun and inventive game, as was the parasite game

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Even though the game style of Final Ninja isn't exactly original, it's the best I've ever seen done for that style. Ninja rules! When are they going to come out with more of it?!?

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Quickly I will chime in that I am also not that fond of Nitrome games, although in this case I am just finding this game to break a lot.

For example, after dying I am prompted to press the spacebar to try again. I do that, and am immediately launched into the pause menu, with the option to unpause if I press spacebar. Pressing said key does nothing, so I have to use my mouse to press the menu buttons. Not a huge deal, but it does break my flow when using the keys to move around the screen and shoot.

Another issue was in a level where it ended with the heat-seeking missiles being the last enemy.

They killed me, but since the game keeps continuing in the background, the missiles touched my dead character, exploded, and then when they were all gone I proceeded to win the level, and the menu popup went into the 'next level' screen rather than staying on the 'submit score' screen.

Clicking to continue just ended up in the game freaking out on what to do, so I had to go back to the main menu rather proceed to the next level/redo the level.

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Chaotick Author Profile Page May 14, 2010 2:40 AM

I must say, Nitrome was great for the first ten games and then dropped into a deep hole. Recently (tiny castle, chisel, this) they've been climbing out of it a bit, but this is a bit of a letdown compared to the other two.

Indeed, if Nitrome spent a year making a huge, polished game, kudos. The nitrome games that pop up about twice every month are far too focused on aesthetics. Better luck next time...

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All I can say is that the holes are a bit glitcgy and Level 20 should have been moved to Level 10, and something harder should have replaced 20.

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Maybe ganondorfchampion can give me a hint about level 20 because I am not finding it to be easy at all.

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N I T R O MEfan Author Profile Page May 15, 2010 11:49 AM

"Maybe ganondorfchampion can give me a hint about level 20 because I am not finding it to be easy at all." by Squint

Don't look at me. I'm stuck on level four.

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um im stuch on level 20 the mecanical snake guy soo i cant get hot to avoid the partwhere he goes down low. :/

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IUHoosiersFan (Cheesemeister) May 15, 2010 5:49 PM

When he gets down low:

Run up close to his head and wait for it to rise a bit. His body will move in a wavy formation, so run under his first "wave" section and you will be safe under his body.

I hope this helps :).

And Nitrome has not been releasing two games a month. In 2010, they have released 1 in Jan., 1 in Feb., 1 in March, 2 in April, and 1 in May so far. Their games are great, unlike pixeljam's and others. The game play is great, and everyone would agree if they were good enough to play the game.

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Joe Gona May 16, 2010 10:25 AM

Is it me, or does this game seem sad? It feels like the saddest nitrome game yet.

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Splurgy May 25, 2010 11:19 AM

The hit detection on this game is ruining it for me. I can't dodge the torrent of pink spheres on level 9!

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