Science is a wonderful thing, but as often the case, it is best not to use it to break the rules of nature. Alas, human curiosity often gets the best of us, and that is where we find ourselves in Riddled Corpses EX, a new twin-stick shooter from the mind behind Project Xenon Valkyrie and with help from Brenton Fabrice, the man behind Demetrios: A Cynical Adventure. When demonic monsters from the underworld wreak havoc and threaten the future and the present, it’s up to players to grab their weapons and send the bad guys screaming.
A risky scientific experiment has gone terribly wrong, and in the arrogance of the lead scientist, horrendous monstrosities have entered our world, wreaking havoc and raising the undead. Only a small crew of characters, some dressed to kills, have the chance to stop the chaos before it’s too late. Ranging from the underworld to the future and the present, these characters will grab their weapons and slay the monsters hordes.
Riddled Corpses EX is a twin-stick shooter, designed for fast-paced gameplay against overwhelming enemies. Players choose from a variety of character, each with their own perks and weapons, and set off across 5 blistering stags to rid the land of wicked monsters. The evil of the underworld has twisted the landscape and all living things. Gargoyles, mutant planets, skeletons, zombies, and other monstrosities emerge from the Earth and are determined to annihilate you with impunity. It is a head-first assault into the bowels of the devils himself. Across 6 brutally challenging stages, you will come face-to-face with this vile vermin from another realm.
To describe Riddled Corpses EX is to compare it to a classic CAPCOM arcade game, Commando. The 1985 game had players fighting an enemy in hostile territory, but there were segments where the game’s landscape was in motion, and would also stop to fight a wave of enemies. Riddled Corpses EX plays out in a similar fashion, where the landscape will slowly be in motion, but then occasionally stop to allow players to, hopefully, survive a brutal oncoming wave.
Riddled Corpses EX is frantic, fast-paced, and chaotic, making for a wonderfully good time. SLaying the dozens of foul beasts that fill the screen is incredible, and the satisfaction of using power-ups is incredibly rewarding. Players can use slow-motion or dynamite to gain an advantage and eliminate their enemies. In particular, players can shoot cars or fuel containers to light enemies on fire, building their combo meter and gold count.
Gold is essential in Riddled Corpses EX, as it will allow you to acquire power-ups before levels and unlock new characters. Each level also ends in a satisfying boss fight, that will challenge your wits, nerves, and skills.
On stage four, for instance, I face a repugnant behemoth, which figures lobs of blue orbs and hundreds of pink bullets. I had already attempted to complete stage 4 a dozen times. As I fought the boss, my hands turned white, adrenaline surged through my senses, and I used the tiniest of movements to stay alive. On my last sliver of life, I was successful. Moments like that make the game quite special.
Accompanying Riddled Corpses EX is its presentation. The game sports a solid visual style and a rocking soundtrack. It makes the arcade experience quite enjoyable in the thick of the action. Spanish-based composer, Giorgist, in particular, provides a retro-inspired but thrilling and mysterious score that heightens the confrontation with darkness.
The only drawback with Riddled Corpses EX can be the repetition and lack of stages. There are only five stages, and players will be repeatedly playing each stage to build their gold count to upgrade abilities and unlock new characters. I wish there were more levels and boss fights, as the game does feature great action and the potential to move into different arcade shooting mechanics, as evidenced in Stage 3. However, Riddled Corpses EX is an arcade game and as such, is meant to be short but incredibly fun.
Riddled Corpses EX is a fun and solid twin-stick shooting experience. It’s retro, 8-bit presentation is sharp, its soundtrack is great, but its gameplay will keep you coming back for more. Whether you are slaying the evil undead with a friend or by yourself, you will not be disappointed with Riddled Corpses EX. Strap in, grab some friends and riddle those corpses with your skill and lots and lots of flaming bullets.