Retro-styled first-person shooters appear to be all the rage at the moment. Though when they provide the type of fast-paced action on display in Turbo Overkill, we’re okay with it.
Any game that calls its protagonist Johnny Turbo is good by us. And when it further equips them with a chainsaw for a leg, we’re well and truly sold. But the truth is, Turbo Overkill doesn’t need gimmicks: its gameplay does all the talking.
This is a fast-paced FPS inspired by classics such as DOOM and Duke Nukem. Levels are open, requiring you to explore and find keys to progress through them. And along the way, there’s a considerable number of enemies out to put an end to your endeavours. You might want to clean up Paradise, but those under control of an advanced AI called Syn have other plans.
As Turbo Overkill is currently in Early Access, only one of three planed episodes is available so far. That episode offers eight levels though, as well as five difficulty levels, six weapons and 14 enemies to slaughter. Needless to say, by the time you’ve played through the first episode, you’ll have a good idea of what to expect from the rest of the game. And chances are you’ll be quite eager for it, too.
Mobility is king here, with Johnny Turbo not only being suitably nimble on his feet, but also being able to double jump and dash in the air up to two times. Add in the ability to slide on the floor with his chainsaw leg extended, and you have a game that rewards those who make use of the space they have. To survive in Turbo Overkill you need to make use of the environment and your traversal skills, avoiding enemy attacks while dishing out your own punishment.
When you’re not chopping up enemies with your chainsaw leg, you can make use of firearms such as dual-wielded pistols and a shotgun. And each weapon also has an alternate fire mode, adding yet more strategy to the action. On top of that, Johnny Turbo himself can be upgraded, making him an even more efficient killing machine. You’ll find some mods as you explore, and others can be bought. Visit the appropriate station and these mods can then be installed, providing various bonuses.
Before you jump into Turbo Overkill via Early Access, however, there are some things you might want to bear in mind. One is that there’s currently no controller support, so if that’s your preferred way to play you might want to think twice. The game also opts for checkpoints rather than allowing you to save, and they’re not always placed that well at the moment. It can lead to some frustration, as Turbo Overkill certainly isn’t a walk in the park.
You might encounter other issues, too, due to the unfinished state of the game, and some advertised features such as slo-mo aren’t available yet. But when you consider that Turbo Overkill is currently available for just £15.49/$19.99 and already provides hours worth of solid entertainment, you can’t really go wrong. And that price is set to increase when the game leaves Early Access.
So, if you’re on the market for another retro first-person shooter, you’d be wise to consider Turbo Overkill. It’s ridiculous in the best possible way, and combines an attractive futuristic aesthetic with exhilarating gameplay and a pounding soundtrack. And chances are it’s only going to improve as more content and features are added. Even better, a free demo means you can try it yourself without paying a penny.