Tidal Shock is a crazy underwater arena shooter that has players trying to boil their competition! Developed by Moonray Studios, Tidal Shock is in Early Access at the moment and has a planned release date of May 4.
Tidal Shock is a fresh and fun experience well-worth your time!
What makes Tidal Shock instantly a stand-out experience is the gameplay you get from it.
Moonray Studios’ underwater shooter offers players a unique 360-degree combat experience with a spherical map design set in moody, atmospheric aquatic settings. (I took all this from the Developer’s statement on Steam, but it really does explain what Tidal Shock is well!)
Although, like any third-person shooter, Tidal Shock isn’t the hardest game to pick up and start playing… It can be bloody hard. The fact that you’re underwater and the 360-degree combat means that you have to check your back… And your underneath… And your overheads. You have to have your wits about you, be on high alert, and hope that you have a good deal of luck if you want to win!
Although the gameplay would suit it being a battle royale game, Tidal Shock offers up smaller lobbies with objective-based games akin to King of the Hill. In your typical game, players have to chase after a reactor and give it enough charge. When you get enough charge in it, the reactor activates a tidal shock (see what they did there?) and you win! This gives you a nice glowing Charge Cube, which is pretty to look at.
Graphically, its atmospheric battle arena is truly a breathtaking place to get repeatedly shot at.
The gameplay isn’t the only thing that makes Tidal Shock stand out. Where you do all the shooting and charging is also just as good. Arguably, it’s better! Moonray Studios have used the underwater aesthetic to perfection. There’s a charm to the way that light is used to bring life to the murky deep. The pale blue illuminates the numerous facilities while dark reds highlight menacing sea mines. All this, amongst the other luminous neons creates a mesmerizing atmosphere to play in. I don’t think I’ve played a shooter quite like it.
It’s almost a bad thing that Tidal Shock’s arena looks so good. I found myself getting distracted by it when I should’ve been chasing that damn reactor!
Tidal Shock offers all the features you’d expect from a game like it.
I won’t lie to you; Tidal Shock gives me Fortnite vibes. Not in a bad way, though. Fortnite is popular for a reason. One of those reasons, and the way it makes so much money, is through its ever-growing collection of cosmetics. Tidal Shock also offers a whole host of fun skins for players to unlock and purchase.
During the beta, which I was fortunate enough to have access to, Tidal Shock offered free access to two DLC packs. The Dive Crew DLC and Surfers DLC each offer up four extra skins for players.
The Dive Crew DLC has Emoji, Kraken, Dino, and Shark. The Surfer DLC pack has Bone, Froggy, Creature, and Crabby. All of these skins would seem at home in a game like Fortnite, to help you get a gist of how they’d look. They’re all charmingly colorful and perfectly stylized.
There is a number of weapons with varying degrees of rarity.
Thankfully, you start with a pistol that has an unlimited ammo pool, so you’re not completely helpless in the deep blue. It’s not even that bad, in truth, but there are better weapons out there. Submachine guns, assault rifles, shotguns, and more all show up dotted about with varying degrees of quality. They aren’t your typical firearms, though; they all fit the setting perfectly with fun near-futuristic designs. Sadly, you drop everything when you respawn, so I wouldn’t get too attached.
There’s also taunts, both a health and shield bar and several abilities. The taunts are a fun feature that helps you mock those you’ve killed or those you’re about to kill. Abilities also bring a further degree of strategy to the shooter. There’s a hexagonal one-way shield that conceals movement as well as blocks bullets. You’ve got a dash feature that can help you maneuver tight spots and gain the edge in a bit of conflict.
Then there’s the torpedo sled. Oh boy, this one is good. It reminds me of something you’d see Sean Connery ride in Thunderball and is by-far the best of the three. It can be used similarly to the dash feature, but also you can use it to kamikaze into a fight. It’s a lot of fun, and I’m not even mad when people get me while using it. It’s not the easiest.
My final thoughts on Tidal Shock?
There was only one major flaw I found when I was playing Tidal Shock, and that was trying to play Tidal Shock. It was near-impossible to find a match. I understand that the game is in early access, so that won’t impact my review, but it was truly a shame. The wait times were ridiculous, and I really hope that they will be reduced when the game is fully released. It really puts you off wanting to play it when its competitors are so well-established and wait times are a fraction of that.
Other than that? This game is fun. Like, really good fun. It’s challenging enough that it makes any successes rewarding, yet I wasn’t put off by it like I am by Valorant. Tidal Shock could be massive; for the sake of Moonray Studios’ small team, I really hope it is. They deserve it.
I also have to admit, I really liked the way it all sounded. The menu music was fun, and the equipment sounds fit well with the action. I do think they could have added music in the actual game, but then that would take away from the low rumble of the deep that encapsulates the whole experience.
Tidal Shock is currently in Early Access on Steam, with a planned release date of May 4, 2020. For more of the latest gaming news, reviews, features, and more check out @GamezoGG on Twitter and Gamezo.co.uk!