Reviews Archive

Retro Weekends Episode 69: Sub-Terrania

Retro Weekends plays and reviews Sub-Terrania for the Genesis. All gameplay footage taken from real hardware.


What we thought

"I really love this game. Successfully making those millimeter movements to get through a gap, reverse thrusting to dodge a bullet at the last minute, or just making that landing with a tiny amount of fuel to spare, it all just makes for a fantastic playing game when you manage to get it all right. I can see people getting frustrated with this game and giving up but if you persevere with it then you are rewarded. The puzzles are really good as well, reflecting lasers and manipulating air pressure and such, all little elements that add to the fun. Music is excellent and graphically I like the game better than Rich too as I think the graphics do what's needed of them. Overall this is actually one of my favourite games but I understand that its not going to be everyone's cup of tea as its so difficult, so I can't give it the full score."


"I'm quite a fan of these gravity shooters, they're admittedly quite niche (due to how much skill and practice is required to play them), but they're really rewarding to get good at. I think Sub-Terrania does a pretty good job of updating the genre for the 16-bit generation here because this really does add quite a few new elements. It has the mission briefings, there's more variety in the level design, and there's also levels focused around boss fights and such. The soundtrack in the game is also good, its a thumping and distinctive techno soundtrack from one of the more talented sound programmers who worked on the system. Graphically its not that detailed perhaps but I'm not sure this is the type of game where you want a lot of clutter in the background. Some bad points; I feel like the controls could deal with some work sometimes, specifically in regards to when changing equipment on the fly, that can be a real pain. Also the bosses can be difficult to work out, they would benefit from flashing when you're hitting their weak spot perhaps. All in all apart from a few niggles I think this is a fantastic and underrated game, though I'd admit its not the most accessible of titles. In a lot of ways this is really a love letter to fans of the genre and that's really who its aimed at."

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