Take control of marooned Astro-Explorer, Captain Phoenix Valentine as you're compelled to explore, jump and ray-gun to survive the dangerous attacks of an alien planet's inhabitants. In order to get home, Phoenix needs to retrieve his space ship's power supply (a wind up key) and locate his tin rocket ship.
Bailter Ray has had a very sneaky release on ModDB, creating a profile with all the media and downloads intact and since then nothing else has been added, it has not escaped my eyes though and I must say initial impressions where very high for this mod. Having a filled out profile with great looking work with a focused art direction, what more could I hope to ask for? Well for starters the gameplay has touched on a genre that most mods tend to over-look, that is the Metroid style games. I.e. a 2D platformer built around a semi-sandbox universe. Granted that Bailter Ray does not have any powerups, pickups, hidden rooms or multiple objectives but it has captured that feeling really well. The project as it stands right now is a game prototype for Unreal Tournament 3 made in 12 weeks as a student project in the RMIT's Game Program.
You play as tin spaceman Captain Phoenix Valentine, an Astro-Explorer who has crashed onto an alien planet. The sole objective for Captain Phoenix is to find his spaceships power supply which happens to be a wind up key and the spaceship itself. In-between Captain Phoenix and his salvation is a maze made up of an alien landscape filled with platforming puzzles and enemy AI. The AI takes the form of both turret like plants which shoot fire and goo and patrolling robots who would rather shoot lasers at you then stop and chat. Players can navigate the environment in your standard 2D side scrolling ways (X and Y), with jumping and shooting feeling quite natural using the WASD keys to move while leaving the mouse to aim and fire Captain Phoenix's trusty ray gun. It seems quite a bit of TLC has been put into the player movements as double jumping with the rocket boots has a very honest feel about them, this is the same for the overall abilities of Captain Phoenix. The coolest move in the Captains skill-set is the ability to dodge projectiles on the Z axis, pressing space bar at the correct time will have Phoenix sidesteping into the background, it both looks awesome and has a real benefit to the gameplay.
Since Bailter Ray is a prototype mod its almost expected that the experience wouldn't last all that long, it is a very short game but that should not stop you from downloading and experiencing what BR has to offer. If anything supporting these guys with this release should hopefully help them to create a more fleshed out experience, because the developers really do have something cool going on here.
Since 2002 we have explored, played and enjoyed mods of all shapes and sizes just like Bailter Ray. We love games like Unreal Tournament 3 that have opened themselves up to modding. Because of communities like Workshop, Nexus, Curse, RTSL, GameBanana and Mod DB, more games support modding today than ever before.
Let's celebrate modding
As mods play a bigger role in the future of gaming, we believe it is important to recognize the effort the teams behind the work put in, giving us countless hours of enjoyment while asking nothing in return. We have the power to change our games and that needs to be celebrated to ensure it remains a big part of PC gaming's future.
It all started
In 2015, when the paid modding dispute left many gamers and modders worried about the direction the industry is headed. Things have since settled down, but we believe it is important to continue this small tradition to show we are not alone in our love for mods, and the open platforms that embrace them.
Mod Appreciation Week
Nothing is more motivating than knowing something you've built is being enjoyed by others. So this week if there is a mod you love on Mod DB (or anywhere else), make the effort to shout out to them, mention and link their mod in a tweet, blog, forum or facebook post with the hashtag #modlove2016 (or click the icons above for a pre-built post).
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