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Classification: Game / Platformer
Publisher: Below The Tower
Programmer: Carleton Handley
Music/Sound: Saul Cross
Year: 2021
Rating: ★★★☆
Disk: link...
Comet64 Friendly This game is compatible with the Comet64. more info...

Thank you to my supporters!

This review was made possible by those generous folks who've shown their support by Buying Me A Floppy. Funds they've provided went to purchasing a digital copy of this game to help support the developer.

What a great way to start off 2021! Here is a very challenging (at least for me) but very entertaining platform shooter, called RUNN 'N' GUNN. You play as Willy Runn and Wally Gunn, two ex-army infantry soldiers who, due to an experiment gone wrong, are fused into one body. Your mission is to exterminate alien invaders before they threaten Earth, using the unique abilities of each soldier to accomplish your objectives.

This game is both a static and scrolling screen platform shooter, where you have to navigate your way through the obstacles of each screen, collecting key cards to open electronic barriers, and dispatching the aliens that block your path. Runn has the ability of faster movements and capable of a double-jump. Gunn has more firepower with longer range ammo.

I've only been playing the game for a few hours, but I've enjoyed it and found it difficult to put down. Even though there are some elements to this game that frustrated me at first, I still had the desire to come back and give the game another go. Thankfully, you have the ability to make some alternations to the game's controls, which can help you make the game more comfortable to play.

You have three difficulty levels to choose from, Normal, Tricky, or Hard. You can also switch the jump and shoot controls. By default, the fire button jumps, while pressing up on the joystick shoots. You can swap these if you wish, but once I got used to it, I preferred this setup.

There are no save states (at least not what I've seen so far), but when you die, you begin again on the screen you died on; you do not have to start the level all over again. At the beginning of each game, you get three lives and each life has three shields to protect you from enemy hits. If you go through your three lives, you also have three continues (a.k.a credits) to help you along.

The game has a pretty reasonable difficulty curve, but what really surprised me was the range of game-play. I was never really sure what to expect when moving on to the next screen. At first, it seemed like the standard level jumping and shooting. But, then out of the blue, I'm in a chase, where I have to navigate through the screen as fast as I can to stay ahead of baddie that will run me down if he catches me! As you progress along, you also come across some larger platform levels that change up the static environment to include scrolling. The variety of game-play in Runn 'N' Gunn is really appreciated.

This is the first time I've had the privilege of playing a game from Carleton Handley. I have to say that I admire his skills at level design. The game has really been keeping me on my toes and, although they frustrate me at times, I'm anxious to see what happens next.

Saul Cross has also done a good enough job on the sound for the game. The tunes are simple but change ever so slightly as you progress in the game. There's some real nice variations that keep the background music from becoming annoyingly repetitive.

Not having played any of Carleton's games in the past (at least not that I'm aware of), purchasing this game was a shot in the dark for me. But, I really like what he's done here and am looking forward to see what Carlton comes up with in the future. For now, I think there's lots of content and challenge in this game to keep me busy for quite some time. I highly recommend you check out this game for yourself and help encourage Carleton to create more by flipping him a few bucks. You can buy the game on - check my link above.

Oh, and for TheC64Mini owners, the game runs great on the console. The save states also makes up for the lack of a save feature in the game. So, you can tackle this game in short gaming sessions and make progress at your own pace.


★★★☆ - Challenging game play with the odd change up between screens that keeps me wondering what could be next.

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reviews/rungun.txt · Last modified: 2024/03/25 12:44 by David