If Darwinia Met G-Police: Vektropolis

By Jim Rossignol on April 18th, 2012 at 2:30 pm.


Gentleman purveyor of indie-game discoveries, Pixel Prospector, has pointed out the existence of the neon vector flying-shooter type game, Vektropolis. It’s still at an early stage, according to the devs, but it has some lovely visuals already, and that sort of free-flying Descent/G-Police way of doing things that was so popular for a while back there, but these days seems to have fallen out of favour. I wish there was actually a proper genre name for the flying-and-shooting-but-not-a-sim genre. Anyway, I am interested to see more of this. Check out the video below.

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51 Comments »

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  1. Mr. Mister says:

    Architecture reminds me a bit of Nitronic Rush ( http://nitronic-rush.com/ ), except for the mountains.

  2. Fierce says:

    ASS.

    Air Superiority Shooter.

    Though it is indeed a good question how one would gain air superiority without shooting. Air Superiority Diplomacy perhaps.

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      Gap Gen says:

      Indeed, the ability to *talk* to the enemy fighters would be a considerable step forward in this genre.

    • KDR_11k says:

      I don’t know about G-Police but Descent is clearly a first person shooter without gravity. You move only when you hold down a key (or enable cruise mode but I think those keys aren’t even bound by default), you strafe to dodge bullets and flying into walls has no negative effect.

  3. DogKiller says:

    I remember G-Police. I had it on the Playstation and it provided me with many hours of enjoyment and destruction. I particularly liked fighting alongside friendly forces and all the civilian traffic, which always made the environments seem quite lively. I wish GOG.com would rerelease it.

    • Prime says:

      Hear hear!

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      The Sombrero Kid says:

      I remember laughing loudly about how a friends pathetic Playstation couldn’t manage to spit this game out at 320×240 while my Voodoo 1 card was doing it at 2x that! Great game and the PC version was the definitive version.

      • fish99 says:

        Yeah the PC version of G-Police was really slick. Very fun game I regret not quite finishing. Pitty Psygnosis (now Sony Liverpool) are stuck making mostly wipeout games for the handhelds these days, I’d love to see them make a G-Police sequel.

    • ffs_jay says:

      Man, there’s nothing quite so potent as the “I’d forgotten that ever existed until you just mentioned it, then WHOOSH” kind of nostalgia. I remember G-Police being a slick, pretty bit of arcade fun, I’m kind of curious how it’s aged.

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      Gap Gen says:

      Yeah, G-Police was awesome. I remember playing it with my sister, with her as the gunner and me as the pilot, since I couldn’t handle all the buttons at once.

    • Reefpirate says:

      G-Police was one of those games that ‘made me’. Along side Syndicate, I was filled with dreams of open-ended cyberpunk awesomeness in the gaming future. Didn’t quite pan out that way, but perhaps the renaissance is upon us!

    • rivalin says:

      Classic intro:

      wow, the days when independent british devs were putting out AAA games non stop, sad to see how completely the british game dev scene’s been savaged by the likes of EA and Infogrames (how many british studios did those incompetents destroy?)

    • buzzmong says:

      G-Police was aces. Very slick in it’s presentation and had some really good cyberpunkish worldcrafting ideas and a lively world as well. Fun to fly about it too.

      I’d love to have a GoG-fied version, although I do remember the game getting a bit tough about mid-way through.

  4. Prime says:

    This looks incredible. I loved the look of Darwinia. I loved playing G-Police. Can’t wait for an official release!

  5. Brun says:

    You could always call it a Descentlike.

  6. danimalkingdom says:

    It’s The Thing soundtrack! Ennio Morricone + vectors sounds like a win to me.

    Reminds me of this http://youtu.be/bwOOkb-FyU8?t=2m15s

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    Harlander says:

    This reminds me of a toy I had in my youth.

    It was this visor thing you put up to your eyes and played a pseudo-3D wireframe Space Invaders-alike, where your Tron-tank-looking vehicle shot down waves of Recognizer-looking foes.

  8. Alexander Norris says:

    This looks awesome. I absolutely love the Gibsonesque cyberspace aesthetic.

  9. Hulk Handsome says:

    Free-Flight Shooter? FFS?

    Also, this looks pretty rad.

    HEY, WHO REMEMBERS TERMINAL VELOCITY. That game isn’t as good as I remember it. Still a great midi soundtrack, though.

    Descent II is still quite fun.

    • jonfitt says:

      Terminal Velocity was great. I remember roaming around the planets searching for hidden tunnels which you would fly down in a manner reminiscent of Return of the Jedi. One planet also had a trench run. I also think I completed it, as unusually for games of the time it wasn’t punishingly hard.
      I also recall that the afterburner made your ship fly extremely fast. Whoosh!

    • YourMessageHere says:

      I was trying to remember the name of this just yesterday. Thankyou.

  10. Wolfman says:

    I was reminded of the really, really old game called Starglider. Had it on the Amstrad. Went and looked on youtube. It’s nothing like it. Rose tinted specs eh? :)

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      Harlander says:

      I had Starglider on the Atari ST. It looked good for its time but it was nowhere near as visually dense or intense as this.

      Also..

      Staaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaar gliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiider! *synth guitar riff*

      Also also: Starglider 2 was even more impressive, though I never actually got to play it

    • Kefren says:

      I immediately thought it looked like Starglider 2, my first Amiga game and one that impressed the hell out of me. I played it non-stop for weeks, and kept reading the novella (mentioned here http://karldrinkwater.blogspot.com/2011/03/auraluxurious-genre-experiments.html) and listening to the audio cassette of music. A whole solar system to explore, with haunting space whales in the gas giant’s upper atmosphere.

  11. Alehr says:

    This is a David Lynch film?

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    AmateurScience says:

    There was a bit of a glut back in the day with descent, g-police and forsaken, arguably rogue squadron/leader too. They were the last ones I remember. Brilliant they were too.

    This looks ace.

  13. GallonOfAlan says:

    All my life I have waited for a playable version of the Escape From New York Gullfire landing.

    > snif <

    • LionsPhil says:

      I am 100% in favour of games which look like film computer graphics from the ’80s.

      This one really is beautifully done, even I can’t see what on earth he’s shooting at most of the time.

      • wiper says:

        Even better: film computer graphics that weren’t actually computer graphics, but in fact black models with strips of reflective tape stuck to them then filmed under a black light to make them look like the computer graphics that the future would surely be filled with.

  14. Caiman says:

    I’d pay good money, extremely good money, for a new Descent. This one looks cool if they can get the frantic gamplay right.

  15. Joseph says:

    I thought it was 360 degree shooter? From descent’s original marketing!

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      From the vid it looks like you have 6 degrees of freedom, so it could be a 6DOFFPS. To be pronounced Six dofffppssss :) Or just 6DFPS. I dunno, I think you have to be someone important to invent a genre name :D

      • LionsPhil says:

        6DOF is indeed another term Descent threw about I believe.

        ‘Tis on GOG and a good lark. Never played it at the time but with a little control rebinding it flows beautifully with moose and keyboard.

  16. Ernesto says:

    Looking good. Love the curly trees :)
    Although this makes me add another point on my wishlist: Playing as a cop in a flying car set in a Bladerunner-like dystopian city.

  17. James Murff says:

    I believe the term for shooters of this sort is “6DOF Shooter.” Alas, does not roll off the tongue.

  18. MadTinkerer says:

    Well, it’s official. We’re now truly in the 21st century. Go back to the mid-80s and show them this clip and they’d say “Well don’t all videogames look like that in 2012?”

    I’d Kickstart that.

  19. edwardoka says:

    Curiously this reminds most of all of Hardwar. I miss that game. Such a flawed gem. A current-gen Hardwar that was given sufficient time to be a fully realised autonomous world would be awesome.

  20. Spacewalk says:

    I like the look of the grainy, low-res Youtube footage more than the crisp hi-res images on their website but if I had to be honest that’s not really going to dampen my interest in this because it looks like ace fun.

  21. SkittleDiddler says:

    This game = seizure waiting to happen.

  22. rockman29 says:

    I almost fainted at G-Police…

  23. Iliya Moroumetz says:

    Oooh…. pretty. Let’s hope the final product is good. :) It looks fun.

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    VelvetFistIronGlove says:

    But… this is nothing like Descent. This game still has an “up”.

  25. vivlo says:

    Been watching the original Tron 4 days ago, and it does really look and sound like that. As everybody says, it’s a kind of lost aesthetic from an era where they thought it would be today’s dominant aesthetic.

  26. YourMessageHere says:

    Make the cities big and I’ll buy this. Make them procedural and I’ll buy it and then buy it again. Looks wonderful.