Stress-busting games: Nuclear Throne

Al Ridley tells us what game helps him relieve stress, and this time it's some real therapeutic action.

Al Ridley
5th November 2018
Image Credit: IGDB

Vlambeer’s Nuclear Throne is a roguelike top-down shooter set in a shattered world of bandits, ravens and interdimensional cops. From the very beginning, you know you face insurmountable odds: your health is low, enemies are plentiful and the road is punishingly long and filled with roiling plasma. Death is inevitable. Victory is almost impossible.

But the gunplay is so purely, viscerally satisfying that you won’t care how many mortal coils you shuffle off. Every gun fires with a chunky, screen-shaking thump that’s immediate, tactile and satisfying as all hell.

Shotguns ricochet violently, lasers make pure, clarion screeches, and explosions rip the very battlefield asunder. The corpses of your fallen enemies absorb your weapon’s momentum, too, becoming glorified, fleshy husk-bullets.

The gunplay is so purely, viscerally satisfying that you won’t care how many mortal coils you shuffle off.

It’s artless, heartless, bloodless, peerless carnage. There’s a place for slow and relaxing games if you’re stressed, but you have to admit: sometimes, you just wanna watch something die.

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