Neon White, out now for Change and PC, is definitely probably the greatest video games of the 12 months. Between the anime vibes and the kickass soundtrack from Machine Woman, you will discover a deliciously trendy speedrunning gauntlet that is as straightforward to be taught as it’s arduous to grasp. Over the previous few days, I have not been capable of put it down. This is some recommendation I wanted I knew earlier than beginning.
Do not consider it as a shooter
Writer Annapurna Interactive could technically invoice Neon White as a “speedrunning FPS,” however it’s not fairly that. It is definitely not a typical first-person shooter. As an alternative, consider every stage — whereby it’s important to make it from begin to end and kill each demon you see alongside the way in which — as a puzzle with an answer. Your purpose is to seek out the quickest route via after which… efficiently pull it off. The earlier you rewire your mind away from a Doom mindset, the higher at Neon White you will be.
Playing cards are positioned deliberately
You decide up weapons in Neon White by working via playing cards strewn across the map. However every gun is not only a weapon. By discarding it, you will additionally get a one-time-use traversal potential — a pistol turning right into a double-jump, an SMG turning right into a ground-pound, and so forth. As a rule, these playing cards are positioned precisely the place they should be so that you can use them. In different phrases, in the event you decide up a gun that turns into a touch, get able to sprint.
Your deck is proscribed
Lest you get the improper concept, Neon White is emphatically not a deck-building sport. You possibly can solely carry two varieties of playing cards in your hand, although you possibly can (based mostly on my testing) maintain limitless numbers of every card. Your hand is cleaned on the finish of each stage. Positive, you have got a everlasting card for a sword, however
Melee assaults suck
You begin each stage along with your sword, and you’ll’t eliminate it. It is functionally ineffective in fight; do not waste your time making an attempt to make use of it to kill demons. However if you wish to save ammo, you need to use your sword to smack varied useful in-game objects — explosive barrels, chests (which normally maintain playing cards for weapons), and the like.
Nail down a run earlier than making an attempt to good it
Even when you understand you are gonna end a stage with a horrible time, it is price seeing it via to the top. Merely finishing the extent offers you the bronze medal, present you the occasions wanted to clock silver, gold, or ace medals, and open up the choice to replay that stage and discover its reward (extra on that in a second). Beating the silver time will spawn a specter who reenacts your earlier quickest route, supplying you with a private benchmark to compete in opposition to mid-run. Gold offers you a touch for the extent, actually useful for determining the way to cinch the ace. And in the event you do this, you’ll see that stage’s leaderboards — that is when the actual sport begins. (Beating your folks by a millisecond is a thrill.)
Rack up gold medals
At sure factors in Neon White you will encounter a stage gate: To unlock extra missions, it’s essential to enhance one thing referred to as your neon rank, your measurement in opposition to all the opposite fictional characters within the sport’s story. You begin in one hundredth place. Each time you clock a gold or ace medal, you go up one place. It is simpler to get a gold on an early stage you have run via beforehand than to set it first attempt on a later one.
Replaying ranges you have accomplished additionally lets you discover presents, which you’ll then give to different characters within the sport, courting sim-style. Doing so will construct your rapport with them, ultimately unlocking side-quests — normally a skill-based trial. However within the mere act of discovering presents, Neon White turns into extra about exploring than racing. There is no stress to set a greater time. (As soon as you discover the reward, the extent ends.) You are simply poking round, looking for a brightly coloured field with a bow on it. Neon Whiteit seems, may be very, very fairly whenever you decelerate and take within the sights.
Bonus tip: When in search of a present, maintain on to any weapons you have got. Additionally, attempt to attain the very best level within the stage. You possibly can generally see the glint of the reward, formed like a brightly coloured field.
Assault merchandising machines for additional weapons
Most ranges have merchandising machines tucked away in some corners. Smacking one offers you a card, usually one it’s essential to attain the extent’s hidden reward. In the event you’re making an attempt to set a quick time, and you’ve got the leeway to work together with a merchandising machine, you have already failed. However these are enormously useful for granting additional traversal methods that’ll will let you discover presents.
All explosions launch you
You possibly can toss away an assault rifle to plant a bomb the place your cursor is. Neon White says you possibly can launch your self by leaping above it proper when the explosion occurs, which is true, however you additionally needn’t time a soar. Merely standing subsequent to an explosion of any variety will robotically launch you into the air — and approach larger than you possibly can usually soar. There are methods to make use of this information for surprisingly helpful impact. For example, ground-pounding onto an explosive barrel will ship you fairly excessive. Floor-pounding onto two explosive barrels will ship you even larger (actual measurements but to be decided). And you will not take any splash harm, so experiment with explosives to your coronary heart’s content material.
Attempt to not multitask IRL
As a result of ranges in Neon White are so transient, usually lasting 30 seconds a chunk, you may get the impression that it is a really perfect sport for multitasking — y’know, fireplace off a couple of emails, play a stage, get again to work for a bit, play a stage, and so forth. Uh, yeah, about that. When you begin enjoying, it may devour your time earlier than you even notice it, and no matter you have been making an attempt to “multitask” will get completely left by the wayside. You have been warned!