I’m very sorry, but something overshadows the news that Hypercharge: Unboxed has launched on early access. It’s a multiplayer wave survival (bear with me) tower defence FPS (please) where you play as a little action figure, running around household environments that dwarf your teeny tiny limbs. And laser rifles. And the hordes of robots coming to take out your hyper-cores.
I’ve had a poke and there isn’t all much to it, at the moment, but hopping about on toilet lids and trying to escape bath tubs does recapture some of thrill of the Toy Story 2 videogame. Which RPS has scandalously never written about.
Here’s what defending hyper-cores looks like. I have no idea what a hyper-core is, other than that they look like cylinders with brains in them and their destruction will mean “you can kiss your human friends goodbye”. They are somehow responsible for ensuring humans do not forgot what toys are. I dunno. Just defend them.
You can do that with up to three others, in split-screen if you want, building traps and walls and the like. One thing that did feel off was the 1000 coin requirement for machine gun turrets, which were the only fortification I could build other than cheap poison traps and walls of Lego. When I briefly jumped into a group that seemed a fair way through a match, they were still only on the cheap ‘uns.
Developers Digital Cybercherries plan to escape early access in the next six months, once they’ve added more enemies, maps, weapons and defences. A class-based character system is in the pipes, as are power-ups and end of wave bosses.
It’s the exploring side of things that most appeals to me, even though it only takes a few minutes to double-jump around every corner of each map. I’m not sure how much of the attraction boils down to me just enjoying being in a world where objects that should be small are actually very big, but that is fine and good.
Toy Story 2 did it better though. I think. I was a child.
You can grab Hypercharge: Unboxed on Steam for £11/$15/€15.