The primary time I charged up my rocket launcher, unleashed a volley of 9 missiles, and explodified a rampaging horde of alien crystal beasts, I knew I used to be hooked on Cygnus Enterprises.
The primary providing from Shanghai-based Group Miaozi, Cygnus is an amalgamation of kinds. Half top-down run and gun, half base builder, half motion rpg, it places you within the sneakers of a contractor working for the galaxy’s greatest megacorp. Despatched to a distant planet to revive a wayward set up to profitability, you end up caught after your ship is destroyed by mysterious forces.
Accompanied solely by your mercilessly capitalist private digital assistant, PEA, you spend your days gathering assets, rebuilding your base, and happening missions to additional the story and discover the planet. Finally you run throughout another characters—the disposable Max, galaxy class influencer Daniel, and altruistic Mei from the Free Commerce Union.
At first, I believed we might be exploring some critical themes about capitalism sooner or later. Cygnus will get our contractor in manner over his head, Mei spends time railing towards megacorps, and the development monitor actually has you rank as much as Deputy Supervisor. Nonetheless, it’s saved fairly gentle. As an alternative of lamenting his scenario, our protagonist makes quips about how absolutely a corp the scale of Cygnus may study to goal the rattling drop pods.
After one mission protecting a lot of terrain, he complains about his ft being sore solely to have PEA remind him that he has accrued <null> sick days. The perfect mission on this Early Entry model of the sport is one the place the influencer, Daniel, has me check out a brand new beam weapon dwell on his stream. Shoutouts to the chat.
And talking of beam weapons, let’s speak for a second about weapons. Candy, candy weapons. Cygnus is at its finest within the missions, the place you tackle swarms of monsters with a lot of enjoyable superior expertise. You may specialise in six completely different disciplines, every of which grants passive bonuses and unlocks ability timber as you progress. They every even have a few completely different weapon varieties related to them, and armor that amplifies the spec’s themes. Just about each gun I attempted out was nice, from the fundamental laser pistol all the way in which as much as the engineer’s swarming incendiary rocket launcher.
To get all these great toys, it’s important to construct up your base. Beginning out with primary buildings and dealing up from there, the gameplay loop has you harvesting a couple of assets round city, queueing up stuff to construct or analysis, after which happening a mission that places you thru to the following day. It retains the pacing of the sport tight—you gained’t end up slowed down in hours of determining precisely the place to place your subsequent conveyor belt or energy station.
You may spend some further time fishing, chatting with guests, or arising with the menu in your canteen, however finally the sport will get you again within the motion rapidly, which is nice. I took just a little greater than the developer’s estimated 12 hours to complete off the Early Entry content material, however principally as a result of I took a couple of further days to craft a legendary laser rifle, which was completely price it.
Enjoying by Cygnus Enterprises left me wanting extra. By the tip, I used to be zipping round with a number of motion expertise, an insane laser rifle, and a dropship able to deploy drones or bombard my enemies, however all I had to make use of all this energy on was the identical few enemy varieties I’d fought dozens of occasions earlier than. The bottom introduces an entire squad system the place you recruit folks that will help you out, however regardless of the structure being there to equip and specialize them, there’s no actual motive to. I solely interacted with the key story characters a pair occasions, and all of it felt just a little clipped.
There’s motive to be hopeful, although. Group Miaozi has stated that they’re including storylines, new monsters, a brand new continent, and new buildings in your base to the ultimate launch, which ought to be out within the subsequent six months or so. I gained’t spoil an excessive amount of, however the ultimate boss is a stable demonstration that they know find out how to design difficult encounters. I used to be breezing by the sport, vaporizing the whole lot in sight when it confirmed up with a number of phases, telegraphed one shot assaults, and all types of bullet hell nonsense. I simply may have used a few of that within the earlier missions.
With tight pacing, nice gunplay, satisfying character development, and a killer soundtrack, Cygnus Enterprises is certainly price testing. I simply want we had the entire sport.