Please also read the Public Apology for the Negative Review
Hello, everyone. Kyle here.
If ever there’s an overly critical review of a game by Cenokga, I want to try to address what the concerns or issue were.
This post is in response to a review left on Christ Centered Gamer. Now, I did give them a free review copy of Starclaw: Battle of StarSpace Nebula. So, I’m not saying that they choose to review Starclaw: Battle of StarSpace Nebula out of the blue. But I felt that this review, was overly critical, or the reviewer didn’t understand some aspects of the game since it did have some issues.
Before you read the review, I myself and Cenokga, always to to make things right. Whether it’s a bad review, bugs/glitches or something else. I want repeat business and to get repeat business is to earn the trust of potential customers.
I will start by addressing some of the things brought up in the review. Which have all been fixed. So there’s really nothing true about the review anymore. It’s mostly based on likes/dislikes and opinion.
I ask that you form your own opinion of Starclaw: Battle of StarSpace Nebula by actually playing it for yourself.
The first thing I noticed when starting up Starclaw is that the player ship is massive
This of course is a matter of one’s opinion. I feel the player ship is just the right size.
Speaking of powerups, there are many in this game, but the powerup system isn’t implemented well.
The basis for this statement is that when you get a power up like a shield, that only guards the top of the ship, you can’t get any other types of shields until the current shield is gone. This is made to be that way to make the game more hard and to choose what items you get wisely. This happens with all the other items as well.
Levels move at a snail’s pace and there are long transitions between enemy waves, so more often than not, the powerup that you’ve obtain will run out by the time you encounter more enemies.
This again is intentional to balance the game and play experience to not get overwhelmed by enemies. Sometimes you can get so many power ups that you defeat all enemy waves on the screen so that it makes the next wave seem like it takes longer to come, when actually they are space about the same amount. This is one of those times when it’s a change style situation. Sometimes you’ll get a power up to clear all enemies in a matter of seconds or you may not get a power up at all.
The controls are very simple and Cenokga recommends the use of a gamepad so I went with their suggestion. They do end up awkwardly placed as movement has a small delay and it kinda feels like the ship is skating on ice.
This is do to the individual controller you are using. On the Steam description page, it is pointed out that the Xbox One controller is the officially supported controller. Some other XInput controllers may work, but it’s not guaranteed. Even some wired Xbox One controllers do give a stuttering effect to the player movement. But the Official Xbox One controller by Microsoft works as it should.
X/Square is to shoot, B/Circle is to use your bombs, and A/Cross is to advance dialogue. Unlike basically every shoot ‘em up in existence, your shots actually start from the sides of the ship and you need a powerup to shoot from the middle, unless that is, you charge up your shot. Why the bombs aren’t mapped to the Y/Triangle is a mystery since Y/Triangle isn’t even used. Even the triggers and bumpers aren’t used either and controls cannot be remapped. Using bombs and shooting at the same time is uncomfortable as it either requires a painful thumb position or the “claw” method. Using a controller is pretty much pointless and if you’re right handed, just stick with the keyboard, even if they are just as weird, with D-key to shoot, S to advance dialogue, and A-key to use bombs.
The control style is based on the SNES controller. Which only had a D-Pad, Start, Select, A, B, X, and Y. That is why no other buttons on the Xbox One controller is used. That is also why the Laser fire button is X and the Bombs are B and the A Button is to advance dialog.
The 2 paragraphs about the bosses being hard is another matter of opinion. They are hard because old NES games where hard and I think games nowadays are too easy. The stars are intentional to give the bosses more HP.
For some reason, your ship can leave the field of view by simply holding down until it isn’t visible anymore, but if you stay off-screen for too long, you lose two lives, not just one. At least every boss beyond that insufferable moment is pathetically easy (but still as much of a slog). Although, I will not know of every other boss in the game because I encountered a bug that causes the game to crash when trying to transition into the second boss for the fourth world. Some sort of error with event triggers, but alas my space-faring adventure came to an abrupt cliffhanger. Other glitches include repeated dialogue triggers for every centimeter moved and one moment where I simply lost a life for no discernible reason.
Again, it is intentional for the ship to exit the top and bottom of the screen as a way of making the game more hard in case an enemy pushes you out of the screen or you can use it as a means of taking a chance to avoid certain enemies and bosses.
The losing 2 lives when outside the screen for too long has been fixed. I couldn’t recreate the error with the 2nd boss in the 4th World. Perhaps it was an issue with their computer or using an older version of the game. Since it has received some updates.
Other glitches include repeated dialogue triggers for every centimeter moved and one moment where I simply lost a life for no discernible reason.
The dialog looping has also been fixed and for just losing a life for no reason, again, it could’ve been an older version that had a glitch.
going into volume control on Windows 10 and lowering it to a 1/10th of the volume of everything else, it is still noticeably loud.
A volume option for the BGM and SFX has been added in a recent update that now allows for people who’s computer’s speakers are more loud to change the volume.
Also, the part about it being too loud. It depends on your computer’s sound card. When I have the Dolby Enhancements turned on, on my laptop, the music is louder and more clear sounding. When I turn off the Dolby enhancement, the music sounds better, but, lower and not as high quality. So, this is an individual computer issue and not a game issue.
I have added the ability now to lower the BGM and SFX in the game itself for people who have issues with soundcards. Also, with the Dolby Enhancements turned on, the music seems to fade or prioritize certain sounds over another.
My experience was met with dull scenarios, tedious enemies, obnoxious bosses, literal game-breaking bugs, and absolutely nothing explained. I had to find out what most of the mechanics even did in the first place from pure trial and error because Starclaw sure didn’t want to do it for me and some of the choices made in the game mechanics are simply baffling.
There was an issue that was overlooked that passed most of the cutscenes that has now been fixed. Also, since older NES games left the controls up to the player to find out, so did I when releasing the game.
Everything that was brought up in the review has been addressed. And future improvements will still continue to happen.