Blasting Agent: Ultimate Edition (Nintendo 3DS) Review

By Matteo Carlarino 31.08.2017

Review for Blasting Agent: Ultimate Edition on Nintendo 3DS

Pixel art: such an exquisite amalgamation of human genius and digital perfection. It ultimately defines the very nature and appeal of many generations in videogames history, throughout entirely different styles and genres. Now, in Blasting Agent's regard, if there's one art its pixels seem to master… Well, that surely is the art of chaos, mayhem and destruction. Is this cubic run 'n gun a worthy addition to the 3DS' library of action platformers, or is it doomed to get blasted off by better equipped and more powered-up competitors?

Ratalaika Games' exploit doesn't really care to ground into the richest lore, or surround the player with an exceptional backstory. It literally is a case of 'you - the titular Blasting Agent - versus some generic bad foes', who go by the name of Black Hand of Fate. It's not like the game needed anything extra to sustain its frantic shooting mechanics, or legitimate the pixelated carnage, either.

Blasting Agent consists of a series of six multidirectional scrolling levels, filled with branching paths and secret areas, bullet-sponge enemies, bigger bosses to blow down, and gold to pillage, in order to clear out each stage with a perfect grade, and unlock new outfits and abilities for the Agent himself. One button jumps, another one opens fire. On top of that, three different power-ups - or 'gun modules' - can be collected to increase weapons' speed/range, spread and damage. As the action ramps up in difficulty, it is also possible to gather additional health stocks and conveniently extend our hero's chances of survival.

Screenshot for Blasting Agent: Ultimate Edition on Nintendo 3DS

That's pretty much all Blasting Agent has to offer in terms of gameplay stratification. Yeah, it's that simple, and the retro feel doesn't even end there. 'Minimalist' may be more appropriate to describe its style and the way it looks and sounds. Everything on screen is a multiple of a square - yet the generous amount of parallax somehow helps the graphics to hold up and remain appealing - while the bouncy chiptune provides a suitable background to the Agent's forays.

Surely, this is engaging and fun to play - with its rhythmical turnovers of sorties and withdraws - and some basic platforming skill is still required to manoeuvre through the more maliciously intricate maps. Nonetheless, Blasting Agent comes out significantly repetitive and frustrating at times, with one crucial flaw to highlight before wrapping up the verdict… The game suffers from severe slowdowns and screen judder, which is frankly inexcusable, especially since it doesn't feature sophisticated graphical features, and even lacks any stereoscopic 3D support.

Screenshot for Blasting Agent: Ultimate Edition on Nintendo 3DS

Cubed3 Rating

6/10
Rated 6 out of 10

Good

A brief couple of minutes' long test is what Blasting Agent takes to convince the player whether or not it's worth playing for much longer than that. It offers some robust and snappy gameplay on the one hand, but, on the other one, it just doesn't seem to perform at its very best on the Nintendo 3DS. In such a competitive scenario - where solid alternatives don't seem to run low - it's hard to recommend to anyone else than those action-shooting maniacs who want them all in their collection.

Developer

Ratalaika Games

Publisher

Ratalaika Games

Genre

2D Platformer

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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