REVIEW: Paper Galactica

Of all the trends I’ve noticed in indie gaming, whether it be the shoehorning of zombies into every available game type, or avatars for everybody, the one that fascinates me the most is the idea of ‘paper games’. I use ‘fascination’ here to mean ‘odd’, as other than going for a visual edge in design, I have no clue who is behind the phase or who is clamoring for all these paper-based games to be made. Paper Galactica ($1.00), you intrigue me.

Paper Galactica - Screen

And I use ‘intrigue’ here to mean ‘baffle’. Paper Galactica is a Frankenstein of several classic shooters where your ship moves only horizontally at the bottom of the screen. I use ‘classic’ here to mean ’simple’, as outside of the distinction of appearing on paper, it plays exactly in that classic sense; no frills, no new wrinkles.

Enemies drop down, singly and in packs, in numbers sufficient for the challenge. Nothing taxing, though the size of your ship means you’ll have to keep on the move to avoid fire. There’s your typical allotment of powerup shots (triple, quadruple, missiles, mines, etc.) and score bonuses, and a handful of boss fights that differ only in appearance.

The whole thing is dreadfully underwhelming, phasers set to stale just a few minutes after you start. Waves go on for too long, the enemy art is bland. With no additional modes, no extras (more ‘paper’ choices doesn’t count), and no fun, this game equals no sale.

Paper Galactica - Screen2

There’s nothing to recommend here. Unless you’re a fetus, it’s impossible to get excited by a game you’ve undoubtedly played a hundred times over in some form or another. Paper Galactica may move the action over to a ‘sheet of paper’, though developer 3T Games should’ve just saved some digital trees and recycled the idea at conception. And I use ‘recycled’ here to mean ‘destroyed.’

23 thoughts on “REVIEW: Paper Galactica”

  1. The “paper games movement” is pretty simple to understand. As as an aspiring game developer myself with no prowess for arts whatsoever, I considered going down the scribble book graphics lane for my first project at some point. It was more like half an hour of frustration that I couldn’t get my concept drawings right, but that’s the point: I can only suppose these games come from programers that can’t draw a straight line to save their lives (like myself) but don’t feel intimidated to put their project in the market anyway (unlike myself…)

    1. Hmm, that could be it, although the trend has died down some. At least for Xbox Live Indie Games; I can’t speak for mobile / PC. I know I give developers some crap for their art choices sometimes (but I’m getting better! I swear!), but true enough, not every indie project can afford an artist. I’d be okay with any kind of art style so long as the gameplay held up, or had an interesting mechanic. In the case of this game, a simple shooter isn’t enough to hold your interest for long.

      Thanks for the comment! 🙂

  2. Well, I cant even draw a kite so I have to give the developers some credit, I can draw boobs though. But what DLMayday said has some truth, sometimes you just want experience, and in XBLIG you cant put your game for free, even if you do a crappy game just for fun, you have no choice but to ask money for it. I still think the best indie game on Xbox is OFDP, but is sad that you spend so much time and effort in a game and does not sell well. Is like, if you are original, you dont sell, be “inspired” (Castleminer Z) and you get more dollars than the strippers in my nearby nightclub. Sometimes ppl forget indie developers are humans, and need support and courage to keep going, they are employers and the gamers are the bosses, they need to know when they doing a good job. Just as will Tim like to know when a reader discover a game thx to him. Now, where is Astralis?

    1. Guess I’m ahead of the curve, then, as I can draw both a kite and boobs (and a boob-shaped kite!).

      I know what you mean, though, and I do like to give credit where it is due. Even when a game is bad, I’ve sort of adopted a way of saying it’s terrible without being too mean. Constructive criticism and all that. I’ve also seen the dark side of it, too, where people can make great games and be completely ignored, while others can make clones and find success. Consumers are to blame for some of that, too, but again, it’s all part of a larger argument that has no real winner or loser.

      Astralis is coming! Not sure when, but they’re taking their time to make it the best it can be. All indications point to it being a really fantastic shooter. My most anticipated game right now. 🙂

    2. I hope Astralis is open world.
      I really need an openworld for my xbox. Might get saints row 2 for it. I like motorbikes, and samurai.

    3. ‘Tis open world, indeed.

      Though no motorbikes, no samurai that I’m aware of. The Saints Row games have a commanding lead in the market for ‘Wacky, Over the Top Open World Where You Can Beat Someone With a Dildo’.

    4. So this blonde goes to the dentist and says Dr. can you fix all my chipped teeth. The Dentist looks into her mouth and says how the hell did you chip all your teeth like that. She said my boyfriend got me a vibrator for my birthday.

    5. Sorry that whole beating someone with a Dildo remark got me remembering that old joke.

    6. @David: Ha! Never apologize for telling a joke.

      @Saansilt: I stand corrected. I thought the series had ‘evolved’ earlier on to allow you to wield dildos. 🙂

    7. Yeah.
      Scrap Saints Row.
      This game here could’ve been mich better.
      The guys go trough all the effort for release but don’t add any zing. Its liked unsalted french fries (The Food, Not foul mouthed frenchmen being flamethrowered).

  3. I’m going to date myself here but the first games (before computers) was paper games. I remember as an 8 or 9 yo playing war on paper and using a flick of the pencil to determine where the rocket/mortar etc was fired. If it hit an enemy they were destroyed and I would spend hours setting up the battlefield while I should have been listening to a teacher. Then during recess the battle would ensue and either I won or I won. OMG I was a lonely person! LOL

    With that being said, this is a complete waste of computer technology in my opinion and I agree with you Tim that these games just showed up out of the blue and have no real merit.

    HOWEVER, I do believe it might of been someone like me from the pre personal computers age that may have started this due to games we made up on paper as children.

    1. Oh and BTW I’m formally David Loves Sandy. <===that isn't working out so I have to change things.

    2. Ah, so it’s that nostalgia from the pre-videogame era that brought this upon us? That’s cool. I’m old enough to appreciate it (I passed around plenty of ‘hangman’ games during my time), though I suppose my ire should be directed at the game type itself.

      There’s so many ‘classic’ games / reproductions on the channel that it really begs the question on what these developers are thinking. You really expect me to hand over a dollar to play the same game I was used to as a child, when I could just go back and play the (usually superior) original, either on the system itself or on one of the numerous classic gaming sites?

      Until developers actually attempt to do something different with these games instead of shoveling out the same thing over and over (and changing the background), I don’t know how they can logically expect to find success at it.

    3. I think that the whole nostalgia, 8 bit trend is holding indies back as much as zombie wave shooters are. Not really anyone wants to go in new directions but a select few. Too many play it safe.
      This one?
      Too ‘safe’.

    4. Certainly. The argument on indies is a little wider than we often discuss it in, but really, what is the point of indie development if you’re not going to innovate? Then again, like what was said before, if you don’t put boobs or zombies in your games or on the box art (at least on XBLIG), you might not sell anything. It’s a complicated argument, but bottom line, yes, you can’t play it safe and expect to compete. Or get a nice review… 🙂

    5. I think some developers just want to develop and don’t give a rats behind about sales. Just the experience alone is that they are in it for. Like the old saying it’s not the destination but the journey.

    6. That’s a good point / side to the argument as well. I’ve just always been of the opinion that if you’re developing for fun, or releasing it more as a learning experience, then do so for free on PC or through other means of distribution that doesn’t require you to charge. $1 or not, it has to judged based on the perceived value.

    1. Yep. Wouldn’t have made the game any better, but had somebody sketched some cleavage onto the paper background, or a pair of lip-locked unicorns, the demo would have been downloaded a thousand times already.

The Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s