Week in Arcade: Galaga Legions, Backbreaker, Half-Minute Hero

A trio of games this week, totaling out to $35 for all.

Galaga Legions DX

Dual analog controls don’t work in this minor update to the 2008 Galaga Legions. The stressful, time-based gameplay isn’t as fun, and the control changes are a killer to the retro vibe and feel. Menus and modes remain mostly the same, which worked for Pac-Man, but not here where the changes are significantly more subtle. Even enemy patterns are familiar and copied, meaning the challenge is more or less dealing with the sloppier controls and sluggish rate of fire out of the gate. Disappointing.

Half-Minute Hero: Super Mega Neo Climax

Taken from the PSP, this rapid-fire RPG is great fun in small doses, just as intended. The rather awful updated sprites rob the game of its retro charm entirely, but for those that hate pixels, it’s something. The basic design creates entire story arcs around 30 seconds of gameplay, stopping only for brief moments of shopping (or dialogue). Battles are automatic except for items, and the frenzy never dies down. Even the vintage music keeps up the hectic pace. A worthy adventure for those on a time crunch with $10 to burn.

Backbreaker: Vengeance

Ported from iOS, this $15 dual mini-game collection casts the player as an offensive player or defender in brief, “run down the field” jaunts in attempt to score/stop the opposing side. There’s no meat on this ones bones, perfect for a quick session on a phone, absurd for a $15 Arcade game, especially considering how full the other releases are this week. You can actually get the full Backbreaker retail release cheaper than this, and that has actual football. No sale.