Tesla vs Lovecraft is an intense top-down twin stick arena shooter developed and published by 10tons -Ltd. The same developers who created other excellent top-down twin stick shooters like Crimsonland and Neon Chrome. It was released on the 26th of January on PC, PS4, Nintendo Switch and Xbox One.
You can buy Tesla vs Lovecraft on the Xbox Store for your regionэs price.
The game begins with Nikola Tesla in front of an audience claiming to have the key to giving unlimited energy by harnessing the power of lightning. He switches on his invention shocking the audience and then an angered H.P Lovecraft appears claiming that Tesla doesn’t know the powers he is messing with. Lovecraft is quickly escorted out of the building and described as just a harmless fiction writer however the writer is not as harmless as he would seem as he possess all the Lovecraftian horrors and can seemingly summon them at his will.
Deciding that it was too dangerous to allow Tesla to keep doing his experiments Lovecraft sets his lab ablaze and sends his horrors to dispatch the scientist. Tesla isn’t going down without a fight though, he gathers his weapons and later his Tesla-mech and fights back so he can continue his experiments. After this there's not much of a story and it’s a shame they didn’t do more with the story. They had an interesting premise but never developed on that, I truly believe that if the game had gone a bit further with the story then this would have been an incredible story.
The story culminates with on last battle which takes places at Wardenclyffe (for those who don’t know this was where Tesla did his wireless transmission experiments in New York in 1901-1902)
Tesla vs Lovecraft shares many of the same gameplay features that most top down shooters employ with you fighting on foot, picking up items like guns, health packs and other items that will help you defeat the horde of monsters headed your way. However, it throws in a few things that make it stand out from games of the genre.
The most notable being his Tesla-mech, after a few introductory levels you are given the Tesla-mech; a powerful machine with twin mounted cannons which will mow down the Lovecraftian horrors. There is a small drawback though, that being the short amount of time it appears on the field. After a short while the Tesla-mech will leave you fighting on foot again, the mech can be respawned though once you collect six pieces so stay on the move and try to pick up the pieces whenever you can.
Another major ability Tesla has at his disposal is a short range teleporter that can be used to get out of sticky siеuations. Think of it as something similar to Tracer from Overwatch’s ability. This can get you out of trouble and allow you to blast away at the creatures from a same distance however it can only be used on foot but who would use a teleporter when you’re in a giant mech?
There is quite an interesting level up/upgrade system which resets at the end of every level. When you level up you are given a choice of two upgrades, these range from increased weapon damage to increased health. I’d have liked it if this was a constant system that stayed with you throughout the entire game but that would have made you supremely powerful and left the impressive Tesla-mech pretty much unneeded.
Other than the campaign of the game you can play a classic horde mode and play with up to three other players locally. I spent a lot of time playing the former as I am a fan of games with a horde of endless enemies to mow down, I enjoyed the horde mode possible more than the story mode simply because it’s challenging to try and get just a little bit further each time.
The latter on the other hand is a different story, I am usually a big fan of multiplayer games especially local ones however this game just is not made for local multiplayer. When the enemies start running at the four of you there is so much going on that it’s hard to track who’s who and what exactly is going on especially when you started shooting mini-guns and smart bombs.
Graphics and Audio
I was pleasantly surprised by the graphics of Tesla vs Lovecraft, I hadn’t expected it to look great since it’s a top down twin stick shooter and while some have looked good it’s never been a selling point of the games. This however is quite pleasing on the eye, the Tesla-mech and enemies especially the bosses are all well designed and it’s easy to distinguish them from the background which other games of this genre sometimes struggle with. The short cut scenes have a clean, bright and colourful style which is simple yet effective
Now onto the games audio and I have to admit that the guns sound do sound pretty good and the music is very fitting for the setting although the cries of the enemies are basic to say the least and there isn’t a great deal of variety between the monsters cries. I’d have to say my favourite part about the audio is that the cut scenes are voiced rather than just silence which I appreciate, it would be vary easy to just subtitle it and just give you that, but they went to the time and expense of actually voicing the characters.
In a world where top down shooters are plentiful and mostly generic Tesla vs Lovecraft stands out from the crowd. It has come up with some new ideas, some excellent twin stick shooter game play and a small bit of history thrown in to seal the deal. While Nikola Tesla and H.P. Lovecraft where both disgraced in their owns times I don’t see the same thing happening to the games based on their epic battle of fact vs fiction.
|+ Fun and addictive shooting||– No story development after the beginning|
|+ Easy way to kill some time||– Can get repetitive after a few hours|
|+ Very good graphics for an twin stick shooter with some destructible environments|
– The enemies all act in a very similar way, they crawl along the floor and attack you when in range
|+ You get to kill Lovecraftian horrors with Nikolas Tesla in a mech! I never thought I'd get to say that.|