Zombie apocalypse meets 80’s/90’s VHS style graphics in this new 2D top down shooter game that is the latest to ride the nostalgia wave in entertainment. You are playing an ex drug dealer named Butch, a man who wakes up after an accident in a parking garage with no recollection of the events leading up to all manner of creatures taking over the area. Furthermore, much like Mario, there is a damsel in distress and you have to go through a long maze full of the creepiest things imaginable in order to save her.
It’s no secret to anyone who really knows me that I’m a sucker for most things that fall within the zombie apocalypse and retro categories. Therefore, when presented with Garage: Bad Trip you can imagine my excitement. Does it stand the fangirl test? Continue reading to find out!
Gameplay, itself, is pretty typical using standard PC gamer controls. Butch begins with nothing but his fists to fight is way through things, but the weapons advance with progression from axes to guns. My biggest gripe besides there being moments of awkward pacing with unnecessary fillers is the rats! What I mean is that they can only be killed by kicking or shooting, and since you have to be careful with your ammo it to a frustrating adjustment period but then the game goes on. Seriously, be careful with your ammo rationing and you should be fine.
In spite of the pretty standard plot and basic gameplay, Bad Trip has some great qualities depending on your point of view. The graphics and sound effects have the feel of an old school video arcade, and really helped bring out the atmosphere of the pixel art journey high energy beats to amp up battle scenes and somber tones to enhance slower moments. Not to mention it was amusing and fun toward the beginning of the sequence when you are forced to use an axe to behead the zombies. It was comical way the head would roll away while the body blindly ran around the room for until they ran out of juice. However, as the game progresses the weapons become more gratifying. (Shotguns, AR-15’s, grenades, etc.) To add to the hilarity, there is a point in the game where you will be forced to consume a type of drug that will send you on a psychedelic trip while still trying to find your way through the maze.
In addition to the details mentioned above, the greatest thing about the game is that it wasn’t just a straight up shooter game. It involved many instances of challenging problem solving, and had more moments of suspense than it seems at first glance. Perhaps this is because of the top-down shooter view, but you literally cannot see anything coming until you stumble on two or three zombies or the rats. Furthermore, there was both a motorcycle and raft escape sequence to break up all the shoot out scenes.
Garage: Bad Trip was a bloody, challenging good time with fascinating pixel art with fun challenges, and a soundtrack that was just on point. If you’re looking for a shooter game with a retro vibe and multiple objectives that will make you think give this game a try!
If you’re not a PC gamer, Garage: Bad Trip is also available on Switch.