A while back, I was writing for a much smaller indie magazine known as Giga Geek Magazine. It was my first time publishing any sort of writing on video games, even though I had made plenty of opinion-based videos on Youtube prior to joining the magazine. Oddly enough, it wasn’t long before we started seeing indie game developers reach out to us. I quickly learned how to use Twitter out of sheer necessity, later catching an image of pixelated soldiers blasting massive bugs. On a whim, I asked about the project. A few weeks later, I found myself playing an early build of Hive Jump, even writing a couple posts back then about the game’s state. Now, Hive Jump has fully launched on Steam with a slew of new features and closer fitting that model hinted at in crowd-funding.
For those unaware, Hive Jump is like the video game version of Starship Troopers, that campy film about fighting waves of alien insects. The game is rooted in SNES-era gaming, creating some awesome pixel art that’s powered by an impressive lighting engine called Sprite Lamp. Players can tackle hives by themselves or with three other players, making their way deeper and finding upgrades along the way. Dying is temporary, but if the troops’ backpack is destroyed that’s it. Run over.
Fans of the rogue-like genre will feel right at home, as the game has a relatively steep, but enjoyable difficulty. Players will have to prioritize targets, know which weapons work for each situation, and sometimes haul-ass to the exit. Some of the most tense moments of the game is being on a good run, only to wind up surrounded by enemies by not clearing waves. Playing with friends does make things a bit easier, but the team will have to coordinate as the game gets harder with each unit added. That and everyone has to defend a singular backpack.
Those who have been playing the early access build will be pleasantly surprised by the addition of a new strategic campaign mode that lets players choose which hives to attack and more. We can finally tackle the infamous Hive Queen, a massive boss that challenges jumpers with her mighty roars. As of right now, I haven’t beat her, but her days are numbered!
Once again, Hive Jump is out now on Steam. Those who enjoy pixel art, science fiction, and rogue-like elements should definitely check it out! A Wii U version is also in the works for later release and is available for pre-order on the official site. A full Marooners’ Rock review is also in the works, but it will not be me giving my thoughts on this one since I have done so much with the game already. I’ll admit, I’m a little biased when it comes to Hive Jump. I’ll be anxiously awaiting more updates and the next big project from those at Graphite Labs.
For information, check out Graphite Labs’ official page for Hive Jump.