The feeling of being trapped and alone on an unknown planet is horrifying. That feeling is what Escape from the Red Planet hopes to encapsulate. This game is developed and published by Frosty Pop and takes place on Mars, the Red Planet. It features simple yet fun strategical tower-defense gameplay with first-person shooter elements. While it doesn’t have many negatives, it doesn’t have a lot of content to keep the player hooked on the gameplay.
As stated before Escape from the Red Planet takes place on Mars, after crash landing upon its surface. With only her trusty computer at her side, Commander must find a way to evacuate the planet while surviving against the incoming hostile Martians. While the story features some twists, it mainly serves the purpose of creating new unique gameplay scenarios. This works out in the game’s favor as it allows the enjoyable mixed-genre gameplay to be further highlighted.
Incoming Hostile Martians!
Escape from The Red Planet has three modes, Survival, Last Stand, and New Mission. Survival mode has you last as long as you can against the alien menace. New Mission mode is the story mode of this game and tasks you with surviving each level. Lastly, Last Stand mode has you last as long as possible however, you must do so exclusively in first-person mode. All three of these modes have the first-person mode, where you can manually shoot enemies after they have been targeted by the auto-target. The auto-target moves slowly, so it is better on enemies further away than up close, this adds another layer of depth to the gameplay that I enjoyed. However, the auto-target feature is not in Last Stand mode; you can manually aim your shots. This makes Last Stand mode the easiest of the three game modes making it my least favorite game mode.
In both New Mission mode and Survival mode, when you are outside of first-person mode, you can build defense mechanisms such as turrets, walls, and turbines to help defend against the Martians. Each of these mechanisms will need solar energy to be built, which can be obtained over time. While the walls and turbines get destroyed upon attack, the turrets will destroy themselves after a set amount of shots have been fired. This further adds to the tactical gameplay by making it so you need to constantly replace broken-down turrets rather than placing down the strongest turret and winning. The many different enemy types all have different weaknesses that you need to exploit. For example, the flying Martian can be slowed down by the turbine. This further adds to the strategic gameplay and leads to an overall fun experience.
A Very Red Planet
Escape from The Red Planet’s visual presentation is good. Each enemy is bright and vibrant compared to the dark reds used for the backgrounds, helping them stick out more. This is important as it helps identify when dangers are getting too close to the home base. All the character and object models are well done. The only fault I have with the visual presentation is the environment tends to blend thanks to all the red used. However, this is a small issue. The main issue with the presentation of this game is the music or the lack of it. The game has one song that is used constantly, making long play sessions a slog without switching it off. Despite that, the presentation of this game is distinct and beautifully executed.
Stay on The Red Planet
Escape from The Red Planet may have its flaws, however, it is still a fun game. From its pleasant visuals to its engaging gameplay, this title is an enjoyable experience. Despite the repetitive soundtrack and the lack of content within the game, I recommend playing this game.