A 3D single-player arena shooter with purposely pixelated visuals, Rule No. 1 is a first-person action game designed around getting a high score. Although it suffers from repetition, there is just enough gas in the tank to see the trip to the final destination.
Like early FPS titles, the player can move throughout a 3D space but all enemies, items, and environmental objects are 2D sprites. Although it looks a little odd by today’s standards, it firmly hits that retro vibe on the head. All game modes take place on a flat plain. Without walls, change in elevation, and objects to hide behind or maneuver, it does seem emptier than it should be. At the same time, I guess this just keeps the action front and center.
Other than the simple Basketball mode, all gameplay options are slightly different, only changing access to weaponry. From a small 3D arena, geometric shapes and crazed zombie enemies will swarm the player from all angles. It is your job to defeat them all to advance to the next wave. Each kill earns the player points which are then tallied and uploaded to the online leaderboard to see where you rank against the rest of the world.
Thankfully, this first-person shooter has adopted a standard FPS control scheme. Meaning, RT shoots, X reloads, Y changes weapons, and A jumps. However, it is very odd that there is no controller map found in the options menu. It would have been nice to know about the grenade pickups or the dash move without trying to experiment in the thick of battle.
The other issue comes from cheap hits and the lack of a radar system. Since enemies constantly spawn from all angles and don’t make any noise, it is easy to get nailed from behind without warning. These cheap hits are the most frustrating especially when trying to maintain heavy crowd control as the arena can be filled with enemies. The audio levels are also skewed and it is very difficult to hear the nonsensical voice quips of the lead female character over the loud music, not that you would really want to anyway.
Rule No. 1 is a mindless and one-note arena shooter, one that has some problems, but still one that I appreciate and enjoy. Even though the enemy AI can be cheesed with basic circle strafing techniques, I still found myself wanting to snag those last few tougher Trophies and earn a higher spot on the leaderboard.
Also Play: the Thunder Kid games
Much Better Than: the Crazy Chicken games
Don’t Forget About: Duke Nukem 30th Anniversary
By: Zachary Gasiorowski, Editor in Chief myGamer.com
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