Thanks to my recent dive into the wide world of itch.io, I’ve discovered some really interesting shooters. However, none of them were quite deep or interesting enough to recieve their own First Person Saturday—at least not the ones I’ve played. None of them except one, and that is Gun Godz.
Unlike most games on itch.io, this title doesn’t have the air of “just made for a jam” hanging over it. And it’s rather obvious why once you realize who the developers are: Vlambeer, the same team who brought you indie hits like Nuclear Throne and Lufrausers. Despite being indie, this game has an aura of professionalism to it, and it’s much more of a complete package than its peers.
Gun Godz is a retro shooter, and I mean that in the strictest sense. There’s no mouselook, no jump button, and no headshots. Just a map full of monsters, four different guns, plus a melee weapon, and the exit. Levels are a lot more linear than what I’m used to from the likes of Wolfenstein 3D and Duke Nukem 3D, but they’re still jam-packed with false walls containing secrets.
The game is split into four chapters of three levels each, with bonus fourth levels being unlocked if you do well enough. Overall, Gun Godz is very short, and you can beat it in no time. Despite that fact, it’s a great example of a game taking advantage of its length and packing it with variety, so you never get bored.
Gun Godz takes you through some very interesting locations, including a high-security prison and a wine cellar. Throughout these levels you will face off against even crazier enemies, like scantily clad birds with machine guns and orange blobs with lots of teeth. The game also has two boss fights, one being a sewer monster—think Star Wars and the other a giant illuminati triangle piloting a helicopter. Yes, really—On top of the retro style and gameplay, Gun Godz has a nifty, pixelated art style and a slick hip-hop soundtrack. Despite the lyrics being unintelligible, I still managed to easily bob my head to the game’s tunes.
However, before recommending this game, I must give a word of warning. It does not run on Windows 8/8.1/10 at all. It just doesn’t. So if you still have Windows 7—or a Mac, you poor soul—then you can play this game fine. If not? Then tough luck. Hopefully, one of these days the game will be able to be played by a wider audience, but today is not that day.
And now, the best part about Gun Godz. While it was originally a Kickstarter reward for a strange Kickstarter ran by Brandon Boyer—If that doesn’t put up red flags, I don’t know what will—it’s now available for free on Vlambeer’s website and itch.io where you can name your price. Overall? I’d call Gun Godz one of the greatest throwback FPS games out there. If only it were a bit longer, then maybe I could say it is the best.