In The Keep Podcast – #26 the_hack (Glitch Arena)

Ali “the_hack” Dark is the developer of Glitch Arena, a new independent Arena FPS with a refreshing, simplistic design. This game takes the Unreal Engine and creates a totally new, more Quake-like experience set in a maze of beautifully lit polygonal maps with John Carpenter-esque sounds.

My chat with Ali was very inspiring. We see a lot of developers who are out for a quick buck. Some go to work for corporations because they want to make a living. the_hack is not that guy. I see him as a soul searching artist. Part of his creative journey is making this game and as we all know, AFPS is not exactly a profitable genre, even at the Triple A level. JJ and Ali of Shock & Rockets are just out to make a really cool game for the sake of doing it.

Glitch Arena

Glitch Arena logo

Glitch has a lot to offer to someone looking to join into the Arena Shooter genre. It excels at being simple and easy to pick up because of the points I’ll make below:

Movement

In a genre riddled with lots of intricate tricks, Glitch makes the movement system quite intuitive for a new player. Strafe jumping, dodging, wall gliding… it’s all there. But the developers have succeeded in making it feel a bit more fluid. You won’t have to continually mash the jump button because auto-jump is there right from the start. Zipping around the map is a breeze with a unique but smooth take on strafe jumping. You won’t be taking full on CPMA style corners; you will be pressing the W key. But that’s the sort of thing that can go totally missed or rejected by a potential new player.

Weapons

It can be daunting for a new player to learn to manage 8+ weapons. This game cuts down the learning curve because there are only 5 weapons.

… Wait, what?!!

Before you get all uptight about your plasma guns, and your heavy & light machineguns/shotguns, hear me out. All 5 of these weapons are awesome! They are well balanced and they feel GREAT to use. More importantly, you don’t have to bind as many keys: a huge plus for a new player!

Your default is the shotgun. It’s chunky, it has a nice spread, it does plenty of damage. CHECK. You’ll find a really cool lightning gun that makes you feel like you are literally shooting lightning by charging more as it’s being fired. CHECK. You’ll find the rail gun which is exactly what a rail gun should be: quick, snappy, un-invasive for the user. CHECK. The rocket launcher… the quintessential weapon of AFPS… You better believe it! This little pixel-box packs a punch! And yes, you can do all of your favorite rocket jumping tricks. CHECK. Finally we have the nailer. Don’t let the name deceive you. This is not a Quake nail gun. The nailer is a unique and recent addition to the game which shoots singular projectiles which do 50 damage. You can also shoot the bolts with your LG to make them explode… CHECK!

LG!

Style

I can’t say enough about how beautiful this game is. It’s pixel-y, simple, clean, it has neon lights… What do you want?! Its a blast from futures past! With the sexy original synth-wave soundtrack, this game creates such a compelling atmosphere in which you truly feel that you ARE a robot in this arena. You CAN roll around bouncing, shooting, feeling nostalgic… And the sound design is so fun! You really need to hear the jump pad sound for yourself to truly appreciate the wonder of Glitch Arena.

Links

Glitch Arena

Website: https://shockandrockets.com/

Discord: https://discordapp.com/invite/rjUu96b

$2.99 ON STEAM: https://store.steampowered.com/app/1083800/Glitch_Arena/

The Keep

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