Gaming Guru: Review of Auralux

Gaming Guru: Review of <i>Auralux</i>

Gaming Guru: Review of Auralux

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by TRACY-MARK GORGAS / Special contributor to NWCN.com

NWCN.com

Posted on February 4, 2011 at 3:00 PM

Updated Friday, Nov 1 at 8:08 PM

Auralux (originally titled Aurora on release) is a game in the notoriously hard real time strategy genre. Instead it’s simple and artistic, but is it fun? Read on.

Story

Auralux has no story, only an objective.  You are a blue sun, with the goal of taking over all the suns on the map.  Against you are the game’s A.I. suns, green and red.

Controls and Gameplay

Auralux takes the real time strategy game and strips it down to one unit and one goal. The controls are very simple; point, click, and drag to move units and spin the mouse wheel up or down to zoom in and out. 

Graphics and Sound

The graphics are simple but visually interesting.  Developer, E. McNeill, took images of the sun from NASA and used them as the base for the sun graphics within the game.
 
ReMon, from their album Rooftop 120, is the band whose music is the backdrop for the game.  Atmospheric, ambient, and techno, it fits surprisingly well with the graphics and gameplay.

Overall

Auralux is one of those surprising little indie games that come out of nowhere and impresses.  It's also a game that helps fuel the argument over whether or not video games can be art.  It's a fun game, whose graphics and music elevate it into an art piece.

From a gaming perspective the stripping down of the real time strategy game to having only one type of unit with one goal makes it very easy to play and pick up for those that tend to be overwhelmed by other real time strategy games.  The difficulty curve causes it to get slightly harder as you progress between the maps. Because of this you will find yourself thinking a bit more about  tactics.

Auralux has a few problems; it’s a short game, only 15 maps long, which means a good player could knock it out in a single afternoon.  Also there is no multiplayer component to the game.  The simple battle style of the game lends itself to a multiplayer option, but it’s not offered.

The game is fun and great to relax to.  I give Auralux 4.5 out of 5.  Auralux does not have an Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) rating, but I personally feel it would be good for all ages.  It is available now for Windows PC only.  You can find it here.  The trailer can be viewed here.
 

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