Gatling Gears is a simple third person shooter game. You take the role as Max, an ex-pilot for the Empire. Now when I say pilot I don’t mean planes, you drive a walker. One similar to an AT-ST walker in Star Wars. Yes, you get to control the walker and you have some weapons on board to shoot the bad guys. You have a Gatling gun (left mouse button), cannons (right mouse button), grenades (space bar) and a shock bomb (shift button) which can only be used once every level.
This game has lots different enemies which does means there are various methods of killing them. The campaign is kept simple, you used to work for the Empire but you quit due to different views and morality. Now you (and your niece if you play co-op) must fight them cause they are destroying the land, ripping it apart for their own use. There are 6 chapters with five levels in each of them with a boss fight at the last level. At the end of the other levels there tends to be a big wave of enemies. As you go through killing enemies they drop gears which adds to your score and your multiplier if you don’t get hit. Also, there are gold bars which you need to collect if you want to upgrade your weapons. Not only can you annihilate enemies you can demolish the features like trees and buildings. There is also Survival, where you have been given an objective like do not let the water towers be destroyed and of course there are waves upon waves of enemies coming to get you. The style of the game is like an old PlayStation game “Future Cop LAPD”. Go around, destroy stuff, kill hundreds of folk, destroy more stuff. These games are very entertaining at the start but can easily fall into the trap of being repetitive after a while.
The graphics are very well done, it reminds me very much of “Ratchet & Clank” with bright and colourful lands and cities, with some wacky machines and vehicles which look fantastic. Whilst firing at your enemies you have got to weave in and out of incoming missiles, this does add to excitement when you’re against a massive wave . The weapons are some what ordinary for a vehicle like this but can lead to pretty fireworks especially when you blow up a big bad ass tank. The big boss fights at the end of each chapter are a delight. It feels like you are David battling against Goliath, dodging its fire and returning a sucker punch to face , watching it fall to the ground hard.
Unfortunately that is where the all the positives about this game end. The camera for Gatling Gears is incredibly annoying. It tends to follow you about quite far back so you end up right at the sides of the screen begging the camera to keep up with you. And whenever you want to stay in a place to pick up all the gears your enemies dropped then it tries to push you through the level, and you cannot go back. So you will find yourself losing out on points. The path you follow is very narrow so there is NO exploring, it feels like you are being forced along rather discovering it yourself.
With large explosions you get to feel amazing causing so much chaos but you always find at least one enemy that didn’t die and you can’t see him because of the explosion and he just continuously attacks you till you realise that it is this tiny person which has taken off most of your health. Like most mass killing games it fails to stop all this killing feel repetitive and eventually boring, I found myself feel like killing enemies was more of a routine rather than fun. When a 1998 PlayStation game has done a better job you know that playing this game just doesn’t make the time put into it worth while.
Gatling Gears provides excellent fun for the start of the game but rapidly turns dull and routine. The cool graphics, the introduction to new enemies every couple of levels and the boss fights barely make this game worth playing.