Review: HyperParasite – Beautifully Brutal Roguelike Twin-Stick Shooter

Review HyperParasite

Developed by Troglobytes Games, HyperParasite is a twin-stick shooter which also happens to be a solid roguelike. Both twin-stick shooter and roguelike are two genres that are pretty big on their own and we have seen plenty of decent games arrive in both of them. What happens when you combine both of these crazy genres together and create a game which is nothing like we have ever played before? This is our review of the PS4 version of HyperParasite in which we switch some hosts and drop some enemy bodies until we lose the count.

In HyperParasite, you play as an alien blob parasite that has arrived on the planet earth and now everyone wants to kill you. However, you come with a unique power that allows you to snatch any host, get inside them and control them like your own body. This coupled with the twin-shooting mechanic set in a world full of synthwave music and neon lights from the 80s deliver a unique experience that no game has ever managed to deliver. For someone who likes roguelikes and twin-shooter, you are in for a treat with this game.

Review: HyperParasite –

HyperParasite features retro visuals that give a strong neon vibe of the 80s and early 90s. The accompanying soundtrack is also pretty much from the 80s so it suits the overall theme of the game pretty well. The animations of the game are spot on and you will often find hints of humor here and there are you play the game. The overall presentation of the game is extremely well and it is also very stable. It seems like the Early Access period was a great success for the game and the developers have released an extremely stable game with plenty of content and feature offering hours of gameplay. Technically, HyperParasite is flawless and I did not experience even a single glitch or bug during the time I spent with the game.

The gameplay of HyperParasite is pretty simple as well and if you’ve played a bunch of twin-stick shooters, this game will feel right up your alley. You move around your character with the left stick while the right stick is used for aiming and then R2 is for attacking. I used attacking here because some of the hosts you will possess in the game are ranged so they will shoot while some of the hosts in the game are melee fighters so they will slash, ram or attack in their own respective manner. Apart from the normal attack, each host also comes with a special attack that deals tons of damage to enemies however it normally has a long recharge time and you cannot use it too much during fights. You can also dodge using the L1 key.

The gameplay is pretty simple and you will easily get used to the controls however the real fun in HyperParasite begins when you master these controls. If you are playing it for extremely short sessions, chances are that you might not end up liking the game because you will die a lot. The trick here is to master the controls because HyperParasite is not a forgiving game when it comes to enemies. The enemies are tough and they come in great numbers are you progress through the game. You move around in levels that feel like arenas and you must clear an arena of all enemies before the doors open and you are allowed to move freely again.

Your main goal, as the name suggests, is to be a parasite. This means that you need to find a host to become more powerful and there is no shortage of hosts in HyperParasite. You can take over a large number of unique hosts in the game that range from trolley-pushing homeless people to aliens to werewolves. Each of these hosts comes with their own weapons and abilities and once you have ‘snatched’ a host, you have full control over their weapons and abilities. You can then unleash their full potential to massacre everything that comes in your way. Purchase some upgrades from the shop to make them even more badass.

Review: HyperParasite –

While some of the hosts can be snatched normally, to unlock some powerful ones, you first have to defeat them in the real world, grab their brain and then head over to a shop of yet another alien species who will then take the brain along with some of your coin and give you access to a brand new host right from the start of the game. You can also store the bodies of certain hosts in this shop so that you can quickly shift to them if you want later. The same shop also sells you different upgrades and powerups as well which are exceptionally helpful during the game when you consider how tough the gameplay actually is.

Apart from these upgrades and powerups, you will also find random alien remains that can be used to upgrade the basic stats of the parasite. You can increase its defense, attack stats, get an extra life or a chance of respawning if you die from these alien remains. These upgrades are however pretty rare in the game and you will not find them a lot in the game. These upgrades are crucial because you will not always have a host at your disposal. As deadly as hosts are with their weapons and abilities, they are also quite fragile and cannot take much of a punishment. When your host dies, you will be on your own for a while so unless you have these upgrades, you will be extremely fragile and will not survive for long.

Review: HyperParasite –

One of the mechanics I found quite annoying in the game was that since the game is about using a parasite to find new hosts and using them against humans, certain sections will have enemies where you are just unable to take control of any human and if you lose your current host, you are stuck with using the parasite which is not that good during fights. It has a basic attack and its special is to take over hosts so if you are unable to find a decent host, you are stuck with using the parasite’s low damage dealing primary attack. This makes getting those alien goo upgrades even more important. You can manage this later on in the game but during the early sections, relying just on the parasite is a nightmare.

Dying is a major part of the game and I died a lot in the game. My experience with roguelikes is a pretty new one as I started playing roguelikes only recently. Having played some of the best ones in the genre, I can quite comfortably say that HyperParasite, despite bringing a brand new formula into the mix, sits proudly among some of the best roguelikes. It is not common for a game to introduce some brand new mechanics into a genre and get away with it but HyperParasite does that pretty easily. I really enjoyed spending my time bursting open hosts to switch to a new host and using them as my slaves to kill everything that came into my way.

Final Verdict:

If you are a fan of the roguelite genre, HyperParasite is a unique blend of different mechanics and you will surely love it. It can be a shooter; a melee combat game or an enemy slashing fest depending on your choice of host. Procedural generated levels ensure that no two runs are the same. The enemies eventually remain the same such as the mini-bosses that you have to defeat in order to get their brains and unlock the characters but the levels are different in every run. Each of the hosts in the game feels unique with different powers and offers a good deal of fun. Highly recommended if you are looking for something that offers fun in short gaming sessions or even longer gaming sessions. Co-op makes it even more fun and boss fights are amazing.

Final Score: 8.0/10

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About the Author: Umair Khalid

Founder of GamesHedge, Umair enjoys a wide variety of video games ranging from RPGs to racing games. Currently busy with The Crew Motorfest and Way of the Hunter.

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