This is the first Geometry Wars game I’ve come in contact with. I didn’t know much about the series at all before I picked this up off of PS+. I remember some of my friends back in the 360 days talking about it a lot and I always thought it was some kind of math puzzle game or something.
As one who isn’t generally drawn to ship shooter games, or isn’t exactly an avid player of dual stick shooters in general, I found this to be really simple and easy to get into. The controls felt slick and responsive, the movement was fluid, the visuals were bright, vibrant, and exciting. There wasn’t a period of “getting into the game” really, I was having fun with it right off the bat.
The game has a lot more variety than what I had initially expected. At first, I thought the spice would only come in forms of variations in the geometric stage layouts and numerous enemy types, but it’s often throwing completely different gameplay styles at you that would give you a different goal aside from just “shooting these enemies without dying.” I suppose it mostly dials down to that, but there was definitely enough variation to keep me satisfied and even surprised at multiple points throughout the game. One of my favorite levels took away the shooting aspect completely, and instead had you focused on flying through gates that would then explode and take out whatever enemies were around you, while rewarding you with the deserved points of course.
The game gets very hectic. If you want to mindlessly play through it, you should have fun. Well, you can’t be too mindless. You definitely have to be attentive and alert. It’s not an easy game, but I also rarely got stuck. Mastering levels takes a good deal of deliberation and finesse. Settling for one star was a bit too straightforward for most of them, but going for the maximum of 3 stars was usually too demanding for my tastes. Aiming for 2 stars was the sweet spot for me. There are bosses in the game, but they tend to be the easiest levels to pass with 3 stars in my experience. That last boss though was ridiculous and is a huge difficulty spike in comparison to the rest of the game. I was struggling to beat it for a while, but then I watched it being done on YouTube and realized that i’m good with not being able to complete it and moved on, lol.
There are also drones you can buy and upgrade that do different things to help you out in combat. There are two different types. One has a finite amount of usage per level, and the other is indefinite. There are a few different models that you unlock throughout the game, and those can help alter/define your general strategy/playstyle. If you find that one combination isn’t working out well for you in a certain level, switching up your drones can help. Though, I often found myself sticking with the same setup and only felt the need to change it up a few times.
The look of the game is very colorful and stylish, and really comes together great in motion. Its soundtrack meshes well with the game’s aesthetic. The fast paced electronic music helps you get in the zone and keeps you focused so you can output the best performance possible, and even if I don’t think the music is generally that great (there are 2 stand outs while the rest are just serviceable in my opinion) it’s still worth putting on earphones for that reason alone.
Extra Notes –
I played Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions on the PlayStation Vita.
The Vita version has less flashy visual affects than the console/PC versions.
I only played through Adventure Mode. There were a couple others there that I didn’t try out.