Back in 1981, there was a game called Tempest that had some revolutionary elements for its time. You could set your own starting level depending on your progress and it was one of the first games to have various level designs so that you were not playing the same levels over and over. It’s a game that at the time had a simple concept with simple graphics that was just fun to play either at the arcade or at home. You may even be familiar with Tempest 2000, Tempest 3000 or even TxK, but how is the new Tempest 4000 from Publisher Atari and Developer Llama Soft on PlayStation 4? Let’s check it out…
So what is Tempest 4000 about. In Tempest 4000 you control your ship called the Claw. Your objective is to destroy all the enemies, collect the power-ups, while surviving as long as you can as you try to get the highest score as possible. All while playing to some awesome music (more on this later). I mean if you think you can do all of that at once.
Let’s talk about the controls for a second…
As you can see, the controls are very effective while being very simple. When you use the left stick you will notice how fluent everything is and by just holding X and having the continuing fire just compliments the movement. One thing I like is when JUMP is enabled, it allows you to jump off the grid and attack the enemies So thank you Llamasoft on the simplicity of the controls.
Now before you jump in you have a decision to make. Do you take the Pure or Classic route? In Classic mode, depending on how you progressed, will give you the choice where you want to start. In Pure, you start from the beginning and see how long you can last. What I appreciate is the addition of leaderboards. It adds that competitiveness fun that we can all really appreciate.
Earlier I mentioned the soundtrack and it does not disappoint. When you also add in the beautiful visuals, the powerups, the fluency of the movement all at the same time, Tempest 4000 is something you could bring to an all-out rave, have it played up on a stage, turn up the volume, and hand out the glow sticks. I mean if that is your type of thing…if it is…run with this idea!! If it’s not, have it running in the background while it gives you the energy to do other things, that is if you can take a break from playing.
But there is something missing. Something that is very dear to my heart and soul. I did have this little void…this small part of an emptiness that needs to be filled…it needs to be able to complete me. The one thing that Tempest 4000 is screaming for…begging for is…Virtual Reality. Yes, I have always held a special for Tempest and what it brings to gaming. I know it had to be equal across the board on all platforms at launch, but we need Tempest 4000 with Virtual Reality support.
I admit that I have very fond memories of the Tempest series and it will always have a place in my heart for it. So does it deserve your time…yes it does. When you add the ability of leaderboards along with the visuals and soundtrack to a something as special as Tempest 4000, Llamasoft shows a clear path on how to pay respect to the past while showing that you don’t have to have this cinematic production in order to have fun today. Highly recommended.
Tempest 4000 is out now. A review copy was provided. To learn more about Atari, please visit their site, make sure to like them on Facebook, and follow them on Twitter. To learn more about Llamasoft, please visit their site and make sure and follow them on Twitter.
In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time I am going back in with my PlayStation VR headset and pretend.