Volcanoids: A practice in wasted potential


Need a practice in wasted potential? You could try Volcanoids.

This game, made by a developer of the same name, had a lot of potential. A steampunk title about building a drill vehicle to tunnel through the earth and discover what happened to the once dormant volcano of the island.

The aesthetic, while nothing special, isn’t bad and the concept seems compelling enough. The problem is that none of it really came together in a way that makes for a good game.

Practice in wasted potential
While this is a cool concept I found myself hard pressed to get any interesting screenshots.
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So where did it all go so wrong?

Believe it or not, it’s not the usual bugs that come with early access games that did this one in.

To start off, the story isn’t really interesting. It has potential but right now it seems like an unfinished screenplay about mysterious robots with a 1950s aesthetic who want to kill all humans, preferably with liquified rock. It could be something interesting but after the initial explanation there’s zero plot development.

In addition, the gameplay loop just isn’t very rewarding. It was fun at first when I was making new additions to my drill and adding in more floors and walls to create a home. That didn’t last long though as I quickly grew bored of fighting the same enemy with different paintjobs.

You’ll find yourself collecting the same few resources and crafting little more than more bullets and grenades after you’ve finished expanding your drill. There’s just not enough here to stay interesting for more than the first 5 hours or so, if that.

Practice in wasted potential
Mutiny aboard the USS Copper Brick.

So, give it a try or not?

I’ve gotta recommend a hard pass on this one. It’s just a boring game and there’s too much else out there worth your attention. Maybe they’ll fix it with some major changes during the early access phase. But until then, just don’t bother.

Check out more EV Barnard gaming reviews

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