Tell me if you’ve heard this one before. An indie developer gets their start making and publishing digital games for the Wii U. Yeah, I never heard that one either, but apparently that’s just what happened with Petite Games, the maker of Super Destronaut DX and Super Destronaut: Land Wars.
Clearly inspired by Space Invaders, Super Destronaut debuted as a digital Wii U exclusive in March 2015. I mean, take one look at Super Destronaut DX and you know EXACTLY what it’s aping. The version I played was an enhanced port that released a couple of years later on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Switch, and Vita courtesy of Ratalaika Games. Much like the Space Invaders Extreme games, it’s a vivid, responsive homage to one of video game’s all-time classics, albeit without the actual license. This game didn’t have the depth, variety, or replayability as those games, but hey, it also appears to have been developed by a single person, so kudos.
On the other hand, Super Destronaut: Land Wars is a little more original. This high-score chasing first-person shooter launched on the aforementioned platforms in March 2020 (except for the Wii U, press F to pay respects). It shares the same qualities as its predecessor – vivid graphics, fast-paced, responsive gameplay – with one major addition: dubstep. The game has been changed. But seriously, the stylistic design and performance was impressive, especially on the Vita, and it was good fun running around the small arena blasting aliens.
Confession time. I didn’t buy these games solely because they looked like a good time, or because of word-of-mouth. They were on sale, and more explicitly, because they had quick and easy trophies that could stack. E.g., I could double up and get the same trophies on both PS4 and Vita versions. This tactic is a little mischievous, but short, cheap games with easy rewards aren’t new. They appeal to a niche market who care about that sort of stuff (like me, sigh). I don’t think I’d recommend Super Destronaut DX for any reason other than trophy hunting, but Land Wars was definitely worth a couple of bucks.