Super Trench Attack!
Super Trench Attack! opens with a surprise attack by the Black Army as they invade the homeland of the Green Army. After suffering a great number of losses the Green Army scrambles to get new recruits. Players get to join the battle as one of these recruits, but will soon realize that nobody else appears to be getting the perilous missions. Instead, it is up to players and an AI partner who joins them along the way, to almost singlehandedly drive out the Black Army and put a stop to their terror.
If it wasn’t very clear already, Super Trench Attack! is a World War themed shooter that doesn’t take itself very seriously. The action is depicted from an isometric overhead view, which makes it easy to see all the glorious pixel art that surrounds you. To save the day players have to complete a total of sixteen missions that are spread across four large areas. These missions range from destroying enemy radio towers and tanks to clearing out bunkers and retrieving important intel. Players will also encounter plenty of opposition along the way, which must be countered with some well-placed headshots or footshots depending on the situation.
The boot camp in STA! serves as your base of operations where you’ll find not only your own tent but also a few shops and the Green Army headquarters where new missions are handed out. The shops provide you with access to everything from new weapons and more bullets to health kits, special items, and even traps. Your inventory is limited, though, so be sure to leave some space for the collectibles that can be found hidden throughout the game world. There are twenty of these and once discovered you can take them back to camp where they serve as decorations for your tent.
Most of your time in STA! will be spent either roaming about exploring and shooting enemies or heading towards specific mission goals while shooting enemies. The game also throws the occasional boss at players and these battles are generally quite good. There are also a few shooting galleries, which will be very familiar to anyone who has played Operation Wolf. For these sections, the viewpoint shifts to first-person as enemies pop up everywhere behind the scenery.
Players must then shoot these enemies before they have the chance to take a shot. Although it is mostly an arcade-style shooter, STA! also features some RPG elements. In addition to buffing your character with things like shoes and helmets you also earn experience points. Upon leveling up you can then boost character stats, such as health, grenades, rifles, handguns, and so on. It’s pretty basic as far as these things go but does add a little depth to the game.
Visually the game features a very hand-drawn style pixel art look, which fits its goofy theme nicely. Some of the exaggerated animations found in the game actually reminded us of the Metal Slug series, so players can expect to see enemies fall over with their pants around their ankles when stabbed or spot other soldiers hiding among the scenery. Enemy designs are also quite wacky and along with regular soldiers, you can get attack by dogs, knife-wielding monkeys, and more. The different areas are not that large, but the addition of tunnels that serve as fast travel points when discovered is welcome. Players are free to roam about for the most part and there are even sections that they will never see during the missions, so exploring comes highly recommended. In total it took us about six hours to complete the game and go back to earn all 24 available Steam Achievements. It’s not a very lengthy game, but considering the budget price, it still offers more than enough value for money, especially if you are a completionist.
The audio in STA! is just as over the top as the visuals with all kinds of death screams and yells by enemies. The sounds of guns and grenades are also very exaggerated, but unfortunately, all the conversations are text only as there is no voice acting. The game can be played with a controller or keyboard and mouse, but we found the latter to work best, especially for the shooting gallery sections. STA! isn’t very difficult as most individual enemies can be dispatched with ease, but if you encounter them in large groups it is easy to be overwhelmed. Thankfully, the game is quite forgiving and you can retry a mission if you fail.
Super Trench Attack! is a lot of fun, but the humor might not be everyone’s cup of tea. We would also have liked to see more variety when it comes to the weapons as all you have access to are increasingly more powerful guns and rifles. Grenades and Molotov work great against large mobs or tanks, but RPGs, machine guns, and flamethrowers would have been even nicer. Despite this, we had a lot more fun than expected with Super Trench Attack! and the game definitely exceeded our expectations. If you are looking for a casual shooter that doesn’t take itself very seriously you can’t go wrong with Super Trench Attack!