I’m not going to lie – I don’t see the big deal with achievements. I’m not vehemently opposed to micro-gaming and achievement grinding; however, it wouldn’t be the deciding factor as to whether or not I’d purchase a game.
Bulletstorm, on the other hand, appears to have used the concept of Achievements as a game mechanic.
Bulletstorm boasts that you need to find innovative ways to kill people, but in my eyes it’s a glorified list of Achievements that the player needs to fulfill by killing people in weird and wonderful ways. To my surprise, it’s actually quite fun and breathes some life into the tired genre (and it looks the goods while it’s at it).
People Can Fly and Epic have thankfully given us some interesting weapons to play with – apart from your mighty boot that launches enemies into the air and your electric leash that yanks them towards you, there’s a nice array of weapons that explode, bore, rail, immolate and decapitate with pleasing effects. Environmental hazards also go beyond the standard explosive barrels (of which there are several) and extend into high drops, man-eating plants, electrical storms and helicopter blades. There are more than enough ways to ruin a freak’s day in this game.
Creativity is not simply rewarded but necessary – doing those fancy trick shots and being more innovative in your gunplay earns you more points, which are needed to unlock secondary fire modes and to purchase more ammunition. It’s rare that you’ll run out of ammunition even if you’re barely trying to play the game, but it’s a nice incentive to do as you’re told.
Despite the variety of ways to kill people, though, the style of gameplay is ultimately boiled down to a set of instructions – to get the points for this Skillshot, you need to do A, B and C…and so on, for each weapon and each environmental hazard. It’s still exciting when you stumble upon a Skillshot unexpectedly and rack up a multiplier on your points bonus; however, the genre is really starting to struggle under its own weight.
It’s definitely a fun game, but I’d struggle to find any replay-value here.