Review of New Bartlow Dread Machine

If there’s one thing I absolutely love, it’s Nostalgia. The games that make me a little Arcade rat who pumped all his pocket money into machines scratch that itch beautifully. We go back to the days when it was worth spending time in the playrooms because they knew that some of these cabinets would never be worn to anything else. What does this have to do with the price of fish? Well, I played Bartlow’s Dread Machine on Steam and not only does it really amuse me, but it also appeals to fourteen-year-old me and I love it. By the way, I have already mentioned this game, so for a slightly shortened Version you can look here.

Bartlow’s Dread machine is therefore a railway shooter in the truest sense of the word. You literally play a character (or characters if you play with a buddy) who moves on a system of metal rails. We go back to the beginnings of fun with this idea (No, I wasn’t there, thanks for the request), when we didn’t have cabinets with screens and they literally used mechanical devices to play. Think of Sideshow games, but more advanced and they’re kind of there. I mention all this not only to give you an idea of how the game feels, but also to pay homage to the developers who not only have a unique idea, but also an idea rooted in history. and this is to be applauded.

In Bartlow’s Scare Machine, you play as a government agent in a story that is a bit… that’s silly. I mean, of course, in the best possible way, but President Roosevelt was kidnapped by an evil force and you need to take up your weapons and save him. You have a wall of undead and worse on your way, so you will have to do your job for yourself if you want to do your job. The plot is a bit eccentric, but if you are looking for a new adventure, you could definitely do much worse.

Bartlow’s Scare Machine is best described as a pop-up book on rails. The levels unfold around you in the most beautiful way while you play. The fact that your character is a metal puppet only adds to the mood and gives the impression of a moving puppet show. Even taking damage sounds fantastic because the enemies are making holes inside you. Her little doll looks worse and worse, the more damage she takes, until she literally falls apart. I can’t stress my love for this enough. Everything is so skillfully and lovingly put together that you really have to have seen it to believe it.

The level design is smart. It’s not just about pulling things off rails. Bartlow’s Dread Machine has very well thought-out Puzzle elements that make the game fresh, even if the basics don’t change. I’m going to take an example of fucking snipers, and let me make it very clear. So these sneaky and sneaky Gits will do a very good job of killing you. To avoid this passed away you need to hit switches that position the targets from which you need to bounce balls so that they are not in the viewfinder. There is also a boss who uses these mechanics, so yes, it’s fun too. You need to be precise, so only spraying and praying will not win if this is your chosen method.

The striking mechanics in Bartlow’s Horror Machine are fun, although sometimes a little frustrating. Have you ever played these Sideshow games on the living room? Where should you shoot down moving metal objects? Yes, well, that’s down to the Ping sounds they made when you meet them. The fact that you move on rails is also fun, but you have to get used to it, because it limits your movement somewhat. Little Narke here… it is possible not to go far enough and get stuck between the rails. It’s not revolutionary by any means, but it’s a royal pain in the back when things are striking at you or chasing you.

The railway mechanic also makes it difficult to pick up things. The bags of money that enemies drop disappear after a few seconds and because you can’t just crush and grab them, they often disappear before you can get there. I would like the Pick-ups to stay on the field a little longer to give them a greater Chance, but that’s quite apart. Money is important because upgrades in the form of hats, shirts and pants, apart from the obvious weapons, are not inexpensive. I don’t maximize everything in the first levels, but for balance, they give us less money in our pockets that we can easily get, or extend the timer and make them disappear. Basically, a confront opportunity would be nice.

My only real complaint about this absolute masterpiece of a game (and I don’t use such words lightly) is the lighting. Sometimes it is not easy to immediately see where the strikes are coming from, because in some areas the enemies appear on the board by jumping. This means that you are focusing on one thing and do not immediately see the most urgent problem that could be right behind you. There were a few times that I missed what should have been really obvious, and my only conclusion, why, depends on the lighting. The lighting is not bad, but in a sense, it is sometimes too good that the level is beautiful to hinder the Gameplay a little. This did not spoil the fun for me and is not a colossal complaint, but just an observation.