By Henry Badilla / March 14th, 2018
|Title||Acceleration of SUGURI 2|
|Release Date||March 7th, 2018|
|Genre||Shoot ’em Up|
I have always found it interesting to examine the differences in game design between Japanese devs and North American ones. Take the indie scene, for example. A huge part of America’s indie devs want to either do something unique, with a story that makes you think, or a combination of two genres that the creator likes. Japan on the other hand usually starts with the waifus and takes it from there. Acceleration of SUGURI 2 is the sequel to a spin-off of SUGURI, which I understand was a Shoot ’em Up. Acceleration of SUGURI 2 however is a mix between a Shoot ’em Up and a fighting game with an all-female roster, AKA the waifus. Let’s take a look at what this unique combination has to offer.
Since I haven’t played any previous games in the series, let me start with what the game tells you about the story. Apparently a spaceship crashed on Earth, and there’s been some unusual energy radiating from the impact point, so our heroine Suguri goes to investigate. To be honest this is all I could understand while playing through the Story mode of this game, as it doesn’t make any effort to introduce you to the plot, or what has happened in past entries.
After a bit of research online I found out that the plot is that Earth’s pollution has come to a point where most of humanity has abandoned the planet. However, a group of people is still working on saving the planet. This leads to the creation of Suguri which is, from what I understand, a cyborg that defends planet Earth while helping heal the planet. In a previous game there was an invasion of sorts which Suguri averted, but now she needs to see what’s happening with the strange energy coming from the remains of the spaceship.
So as you can imagine this is my first problem. For a game which apparently has such big lore, there is no way to know it in-game. The story mode is basically an Arcade mode with some dialogue between the characters at the beginning and before the final boss. And even those dialogues don’t give enough details to completely understand what’s going on. Maybe if you have played the previous entries you can understand the plot better, but for me it doesn’t make much sense.
Moving to the gameplay, this game is more similar to a Shoot ’em Up than a fighting game. Combat occurs in a circular battlefield in which you control your character with the left analog stick. Since your character is flying there’s no limit on which direction you can go, but there’s a limit on how far from your opponent you can be. Each character has two different attacks, a beam-based shot and a bullet-based shot. There is an alternative version for each of these shots if you press down the special button while shooting, and also the animation or attack can change depending on your distance from the opponent.
You can also run, which will increase your overheat meter. If it goes over 100% it will increase how much damage you take, and you can fill up to three bars of special attack that can be used either to launch a super attack or use a bar to block an incoming attack. I feel that in general combat in this game is needlessly complex. From the start the CPU will start running around, shooting at you, and some of the characters leave mines or other obstacles on the stage which makes it very difficult for you to try and approach them. Most attacks do not chase your opponent so it becomes a battle of chasing your opponent to be as close as possible, while avoiding their attacks to see if you can at least land one attack of your own.
Even at the easiest difficulty it is really hard to hit the opponents and they all keep spamming all their attacks, so the only viable strategy is to spam your attack with the best range and hope for the best.
Besides the story mode mentioned above, the game also has an Arcade mode, in which you simply battle a series of random enemies until the end, Local match to play against the CPU or a friend, and Online, which unfortunately I couldn’t test as there were no lobbies available for me to try it.
Graphically the character’s drawings are quite simple, going for the “Moe” crowd. And while there are several different characters with different attack patterns and attacks, graphically they look a bit similar, so it’s easy to miss where you’re at alongside all the missiles, beams and other animations during combat. In the sound department, the soundtrack is composed of electronic music tracks which are quite catchy and pumps you up for each fight. Definitely one of the highlights of the game.
In the end, while I appreciate the unique combat system, Acceleration of SUGURI 2 doesn’t offer too many features or manage to tell a good story. With a confusing combat system and unforgiving difficulty it’s hard to really appreciate the mechanics introduced for the game. The game costs $7.64 on Steam and the story or arcade can take around 30 minutes to beat it. From there it’s all up to you how many hours you want to invest on it, but I don’t see much in regards to replayability. This is only for fans of the series or people looking to play something unique.
Review copy provided by the publisher.
Acceleration of SUGURI 2Fruitbat FactoryOrange_JuiceShoot 'em upSUGURI