Posted August 3, 2015 by Fin Carew in PC

Galak-Z: The Dimensional Release


Announced during Sony’s pre-E3 2013 press conference, Galak-Z (pronounced Galak-zed in the UK) is out this week for PS4 and PC at last. The latest in a long line of bird’s-eye shooty space nonsense with a stupid pun name, Galak-Z promises to revamp the genre for the new generation. First impressions have impressed so far, with emphasis on strategy and tactics over the ‘keep-going-and-hope’ technique the genre is so familiar with.


For one – something rarely seen in space shooters – Galak-Z has given you a pilot character to empathise with (as much as one can empathise with a picture of a human). The character’s gritting teeth and visible desperation throughout the fighting neatly mirrors your own and combined with permadeath, there’s a very real incentive to keep your little pilot guy alive. When the game threatens permadeath, what it really means is unless you’ve finished a five-episode season you shall lose every swanky new upgrade you’ve obtained. Galak-Z’s version of mercy is to extort your metaphorical game pockets. ‘Crash Coins’ – used to buy upgrades after getting permadeathed – can be exchanged for a respawn, albeit having to collect your upgrades from somewhere on the map.


It’s an often flaunted, but very cynical, method of gathering sales – latching onto the lost innocence of the average gamer by baiting them with nostalgia. It’s no secret that everyone in their 20s thinks the world was so much better when games were overly difficult, two-dimensional and only had one gaming mechanic (it wasn’t better, you idiots). Game developers (and often fans) love to rehash old ideas to combat the terrible inevitability that art is evolving, but you can’t throw Galak-Z in with that lot. Galak-Z is an example of taking your nostalgic nonsense and developing a next-gen idea around it, much like Capcom did with Resident Evil 4. With its focus on strategy and fights you can’t win with brute force alone, Galak-Z should make a popular choice this week. This is all without mentioning the ‘special weapon’ that’ll make manga fans wee through their ears – a space-ship/mech transformation that can’t possibly make things easier in a space battle, but whatever.

Fin Carew