Super Space Rubbish
You like Dino Run SE, right? And Nanotube? Well, imagine a game that's nothing like either of those games but co-created by the makers of each. Imagining that? Now stop and check out Super Space Rubbish, a game that satisfies the wildest fantasies you've had since starting this review, and does so with a fantastic retro style. Super Space Rubbish looks a lot like the classic Asteroids game on the surface, but really it's a mining/upgrading sort of experience where you customize your ship using materials extracted from asteroids smashed with your turret.
The game is as simple as this: steer your Griffiths BX-7 Material Recovery Vessel using the [arrow] keys, thrusting forward and in reverse and turning your ship to control direction. The screen doesn't scroll, so you can fly off the edge and wrap around the other, just like the asteroids and enemy ships that float by do. Tap [c] to fire your weapons, and use [x] to activate your shield. Moving and using your equipment costs energy, so you can only do so much before you have to pause for a fraction of a second to recharge. Don't worry, you won't have to conserve energy in this game. Just don't go mad with the turrets and shield and you'll be fine!
Various chunks of rocks float through your little patch of space, and you can shatter them to tiny bits with your guns. You want to break them down as much as possible, both to minimize the chance you take a hit and to extract more compounds from the debris. Floating support drones will occasionally stop by, allowing you to dock and exchange your payload for cash and upgrade your equipment. The upgrades shop is a strong part of the game, as there are plenty of things to bump up a notch, all of which have a serious affect on the rubbish harvesting you'll spend most of your time doing.
It's not all asteroids and compounds, though. Lifeforms often pay you a visit, bouncing around the debris field and causing general havoc to the area. Many can be absorbed by your shield, while some visitors will require different measures to deal with. Oh, and there's big ships. Comets will visit you, too. And they're neat!
Analysis: Super Space Rubbish has the feel of a nice, casual browser game in many ways, but its ability to call you back for more and more sessions is what makes it so deliciously special. We all love mining games, and we love games that let us upgrade things out the wazoo, too. Super Space Rubbish combines both, wrapped lovingly in a retro arcade shell and coated with the nicest of electronic soundtracks that can be surprisingly awesome to listen to outside of the game.
Adapting an arcade experience into a game that includes strategy-like elements isn't always successful, and one of the problems you can run into is repetition. Super Space Rubbish avoids this by introducing new events every once in a while. It's often a long wait between upgrade drones, leaving you all by yourself to beat up asteroids and avoid their debris. Events like comets flying by or aliens paying you a visit keep things new and interesting, breaking up the monotany of black and white fields of asteroids to boot.
In what could very well be an indie gaming first, Slakinov and PixelJAM are selling Super Space Rubbish packaged along with its soundtrack via Bandcamp, a site traditionally reserved for music. Really, you can think about Super Space Rubbish as a bonus you get for grabbing a great five song electronic soundtrack, all for, as the official website accurately puts it, a "disgustingly reasonable price". There's even a DinoRubbish bundle that includes Dino Run SE, Super Space Rubbish, and soundtracks for both games, available for barely more than Super Space Rubbish alone!
Glowy neon artwork, simple gameplay that gets so much better the more you play, asteroids that go "BOOM", and high-tech spacecraft that can upgrade handfuls of equipment and dock with futuristic geometric shapes. Yeah, it's safe to say Super Space Rubbish is a big pile of awesome.