“Interstellar panic simulator.” It’s not immediately clear why System Status 100 creator Jonothan Rubock calls his free browser game that. It’s easy-peasy at first, simply giving you a little froggy space robot and a steady stream of space bullets to jump over. Survive for 25 seconds and another box will open on the screen, starting another one-button minigame. Oh. Then another comes at 50. And another at 75. Then you’re experiencing interstellar panic. I’ve never quite reached 100 seconds, so I don’t know what happens, but the game has space for another four games. Crumbs.
It’s a wonderful and horrible game of trying to concentrate on more things than you can reasonably concentrate on, and trying to recover from mistakes. While healthpacks restore a little health, the more you lose, the more glitchy artifacts start flickering around the screen, then you mistake those for bullets to dodge or rocks to drill and panic and start mashing keys and everything goes wrong.
And I keep playing it. I’m starting to slip into rhythms, instinctively checking the right screen at the right time, but it’s a tricky one all right. Every space mission I’ve been in charge of has ended terribly.
(Use the number keys to play the first few four games, gang. Look for the numbers flashing up as they begin.)
I’m determined to hit 100 and see what happens, as the instructions say mouse controls come into it too at that point, but my highest is only 95.79999999042454 seconds. It’s quite precise with your failings. Reader dear, please play this game a whole load and tell us all what happens.