Blacksea Odyssey [official site] is about driving spears into the fleshy bits of giant spacebeasts till they’re wounded enough that you can embed a harpoon in their bloodied flesh and pull off parts of their limbs. Pretty gross! Also pretty neat, and the Kickstarter it’s running right now offers an alpha demo to horrifically tinker with.
I spent around 20 minutes playing the alpha build, plowing through the tutorial and then trying – and failing – to defeat the easiest of three missions. The enemies in each are randomised in number and placement, along with modifiers to your movement and attack speed. Aside from fighting enemies, you can also find keys to unlock chests embedded in the destructible, crystal environment, each one containing a modifying runes. The runes can either be applied to your ship to speed up your movement or improve your defences, or to your spear, taking the initially weak and slow to fire weapon and making it making it fire like a machinegun, shotgun or rocket launcher.
It’s the harpoon that makes the game feel slightly different though, and with which I had the most fun:
Enemies fire projectiles and spin to whip you with their pointy appendages, which makes the slow chargeshot of the harpoon a risky maneuver. If it strikes its target however, it’s satisfying to then wrench it back out, pulling a fin or a jawbone with it. You can download the demo yourself from the Blacksea site.
The Kickstarter is hoping to harpoon $10,000 USD to finish the game and is just over halfway there with 14 days to go. The $10 (around £6.65) pledge tier will get you a copy of the game when it releases next year, and $25 (£16.62) will net you early beta access.