Description: Top-down action game where firemen are tasked with combating a blaze inside an office building/factory.
Conveniences: Small fires serve as collision obstacles but don’t hurt the avatar; the AI companion is invincible, only attacks fires within the player’s vicinity, and generally stays out of the way.
Annoyances: Long and unskippable text pop-ups; camera doesn’t adjust to the player’s facing direction making it hard to look ahead.
Standouts: Lots of unique gameplay elements (albeit not implemented realistically) that stem from various fire-fighting concepts.
- The player’s water-cannon has unlimited ammo and can fire a close-range burst at the ground, or a focused, long-range stream into the air. This has various gameplay implications as the player must constantly switch between the two modes in order to properly deal with fire.
- Different types of fire not only cover the environments, but also serve as typical videogame enemies. They possess unique animations, movement patterns, HP values, high and/or low presence (that syncs with the water cannon), and even unique functionality such as spawning other fires or exploding upon death.
- As fires move across the ground, they permanently scorch the areas they touch.
- Each level contains a boss — an out-of-control, borderline-sentient fire monstrosity.
- The player’s goal is to simply progress from one room to the next; putting out fires and rescuing civilians is entirely optional. However, both tasks serve as risk-reward systems.
Extinguishing fires is akin to obtaining collectibles, and the player’s end-level ranking is based on how many fires were put out. Locating helpless workers is also dangerous and time consuming, but it’s the only way to restore the player’s health.
- Scripted text pop-ups appear periodically throughout the game and provide the driving narrative. The non-modal ones are particularly nice as they don’t pause the action.
- Each level has a time limit, but nothing seems to happen when it runs out. The only disadvantage is that at about the 85%-gone mark, the player’s health is drained to a sliver.
- Despite the whole game being taking place in just one building, there’s quite a bit of variety in the visuals and mechanics of the environments. Ventilators and conveyor belts affect the player’s movement; boilers, windows, and lamps burst under pressure; heat damage collapses floors and hanging lights; airducts and make-shift tunnels force provide alternative routes; blowback from enclosed infernos explodes out as doors are opened, etc.
There’s even a section where the two firemen get to ride an elevated platform outside the building itself!