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The Polynomial: psychedelic shooter will melt your mind

You know how sometimes, when you're browsing the store and something catches your eye that is just SO goddamn cool you have to buy it there and then? That's what happened to us over the weekend when we saw The Polynomial - Space of the Music for the first time.

Developed by Dmytry Lavrov, words do not do this game justice - hell, even the gorgeous screenshots We've liberally scattered through the article don't. This game is a crazy psychedelic mind-melting experience. A little bit Rez, a little bit like the space combat in the old Elite games from the 80's. A lot like you have no idea what the heck is going on!

The controls are simple: you use the mouse to aim, left mouse button shoots, right mouse button to zoom in (just like if you were using a sniper rifle) and WASD speeds you up, slows you down and rolls your ship left and right.

The bar across the top shows your energy, the little bar to the left of your sights shows how fast you are going and the radar in the bottom corner shows you where everything else is in the world.

The world itself is totally abstract, with everything you see being mathematically generated and updated in time with the music. You can tweak almost everything about how the visuals are generated in the game's built-in editor. Change what's drawn, how much is drawn, how the music is interpreted, how frantic the game play is - it's great!

So far we've figured out that you shoot the weird jellyfish marked with orange squares, protect the ones marked with blue squares (they're on your side) and collect the power-up icons as you fly around for extra firepower etc.

Scoring is based on what you've done in the last 1, 5, 20 and 60 minutes as well as how much you do in the space of one lifetime. This means that if you were on a huge roll and got killed it's not totally going to destroy your game. Your score is constantly updated based on these factors and can lead to some crazy multipliers!

You can pause or restart the currently playing music track at any time, or skip to the previous or next track using the , and . keys. The music range is pretty nice for this sort of game, everything from chilled piano tracks to chilled ambient techno - but if you don't like any of the tunes that it comes with you can just use your own! The game even lets you use your mic as a sound source - what more could you ask for?


You can grab the free demo right now from Steam: Steam

With thanks to Rock Paper Shotgun for bringing this game to our attention!


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