Deepak Fights Robots

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Deepak Fights Robots

JoshCRobots, man. They're the worst. Always pulling you out of your workplace and forcing you to battle them in a series of psychedelic levels. Blowing you up. Killing your cows. It's ridiculous. Luckily, we have Deepak, representing the everyman in the daily struggle against robo-baddies. Deepak Fights Robots, from RunMan: Race Around the World creator Tom Sennett, is loaded with mind-bending levels, quick arcade action, more colors than a rainbow drowning in a crayon factory.

Deepak Fights RobotsDeepak is an uncomplicated sort of fellow, simply running, jumping, collecting stuff, turning super, and smashing robots to smithereens. You know, like you do. Use the [arrow] keys to steer our hero to the flashing atoms. Once he collects them all, a big power-up appears that turns you into Super Deepak, robot-fighting machine. When you're super, one hit sends 'bots flying, so tear through the screen with practically no limitations, clearing the baddies away as you prepare to end the level and move on to the next.

Analysis: Though blissfully aware of its retro-simple roots, Deepak Fights Robots is a brand new thing, to be explored and savored. Here, so much of the beauty is in the discovery, in learning how and why the robots move, learning that Deepak can do a little more than run and jump, and learning what's going on with each of the various animals and power-ups. Deepak Fights Robots's atmosphere and high score list will stick in your head and force you to return again and again to try perfect runs, to try every power-up, to save every cow...

Deepak Fights RobotsAnd then, there's the music. Oh, the music. Provided by Family FUNKtion and the Sitar Jams, Deepak's soundtrack is a thing of beauty. Catchy and eccentric, relaxing but action-ready, it perfectly paints the mood of the robot war within the game. This, the Microsoft Paint style character designs, and the flashing neon levels create a game that is wholly original, though wholly reverent of the games that come before it. The levels stay interesting, making good use of the wrapping screen, the robot strategies, and the shifting rules of the game. Though never getting too difficult, everything stays fresh and challenging to the mind and the reflexes, as well as holding up to multiple playthroughs straining for that high score.

A big part of Deepak is its status as a nostalgia piece, though its simple gameplay and innocent attitude mean it's as fun for children as it is for adults. The game's relatively short length (under an hour for a playthrough) and single game mode means that those who aren't drawn in by it's atmosphere and addictive high score table may find themselves disappointed at the end. Things like a two-player mode, a level creator, or a time-attack mode would lengthen the experience and create more game for the buck. Live updates are included in the price, but it's hard to know if or when there will be new content coming along.

Brevity doesn't mean a lack of quality, and Deepak Fights Robots proves just that. Never overstaying its welcome and providing loads of arcade action firmly rooted in retro high score-achieving roots, this is one wild ride you won't get off of anytime soon. Also, you get to crush robots. God, I hate robots.

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