ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Albert Lichi 18.02.2018

Review for ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun on Nintendo Switch

Even in 2018, there is no escape of Flappy Bird clones. ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun is such a clone that has managed to sneak its way onto the Nintendo Switch eShop. The thing with these Temple Run-style games is that the simplistic and easy to pick-up-and-play loop that frequently makes them addictive. Having a bit of personality certainly can go a long way and maybe ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun just might have what it takes to be the proverbial "good" auto-run title.

RunGunJumpGun is exactly all there is to do in ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun. The little spaceman runs indefinitely and the only input from the player is firing his gun in one of two directions: straight ahead or down. Obviously, firing forwards will obliterate obstacles and enemies, while firing down is a makeshift version of jumping or, in this case, ascending. The ascending operates much like how the flapping works in Flappy Bird and will take a surprising amount of finesse to master even after several lengthy play sessions. The gameplay couldn't be any simpler and yet also feels quite polished and responsive.

With very little exception, the levels are very short. An easy way to assess how long each run can be is by the collectible count, which is rarely over 15. Generally, each stage can be completed in about 30 seconds, but given the high difficulty, it can be easy to dump 10 minutes in some instances. While it may seem daunting at first, after coming to grips with the mechanics of how the shooting and hovering operates, ATOMIK becomes a pretty straightforward runner with average challenge.

Screenshot for ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun on Nintendo Switch

This might have to do with the fact that the running spaceman can take two hits before restarting. Two hits is actually too forgiving for a game like this that has extremely short stages. It becomes unrewarding to be able to cheese some areas knowing that the spaceman can take that one hit and still beat the level. There is not much of a real incentive, either, to do a perfect run or to even get all the collectibles since, for some reason, the developer put an option to unlock every stage from the start. Perhaps this was done because of the nature of ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun was that it should be enjoyed at parties since it has an amazing soundtrack and lurid visuals.

By far the crowning achievement is its aesthetics. This has some really interesting and surreal pixel art that has a '70s acid trip vibe going on and the pulsing electronic music only enhances the experience. Between each stage, there is a very bizarre character portrait and they usually dole out some vague world-building details. This unorthodox means of storytelling is effective, does not intrude on gameplay, and the vignettes are written in an amusing yet manic manner. Believe it or not, reading what these oddballs are going to say is actually engaging and seeing their portrait gradually change in subtle ways really gives the impression of a descent into a nightmarish drug-fuelled frenzy. The flashing colours, the scaling pixels, and the way the game simulates image-tearing makes ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun really stand out from other runners. It is almost a shame that it does not play more like a standard run and gunner like the Contra series where the action might have been more engaging because the only thing really holding ATOMIK back is the tired genre of auto-running.

Screenshot for ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

As far as auto-runners go, ATOMIK: RunGunJumpGun is solid. It does not really do anything to win over anyone to partake in games like this but will be worth having around when there are a lot of guests around and can be a DJ understudy for the soundtrack alone. Maybe if the art was repurposed for a more interesting genre, ATOMIK could have been a real winner. Only fans of auto-runners need apply - for everyone else, just go and buy the soundtrack instead.

Developer

ThirtyThree

Publisher

Good Shepherd Entertainment

Genre

Action

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

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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