The first Collider was a simple arcade game about venturing inside a particle accelerator at ever increasing breakneck speeds and tested player reflexes as they journeyed through neon coloured backgrounds and electronic tunes. Collider 2 takes the basic formula of the first game and adds more depth to the whole experience.
As opposed to guiding a simple dot through abstract hurdles in the first game, Collider 2 contextualizes the gameplay by including a space sci-fi theme into the mix, where the players have to navigate a spaceship through an enemy battle station to complete various missions during an ongoing space war.
Even though the addition of space theme adds a decidedly different feel to the game, at its core, Collider 2 is still essentially an on rails game about avoiding obstacles while going through a cylindrical tube corridor.
Unlike the one-hit-death system of the first Collider, this time, the game affords some leniency to its primary game system by introducing shields. If the player is unable to avoid an obstacle their ship‘s shield goes down and takes a few seconds to re-stabilise. During this time, any subsequent hit to the ship results in an instant game over.
In spite of this small reprieve, the game retains its challenging nature as it continuously tests players’ reflexes by throwing obstacles at break neck speeds.
The game adds further depth by including further secondary mechanics like; managing the ship’s acceleration and engine heat while manoeuvring through the levels.
Players can make use of different powerups littered through each stage to help them replenish their ship’s shield and acceleration boost, as well as score multipliers and credit magnets that help in collecting credits. These credits can be used to purchase different ships, skins, shield and boost upgrades.
In spite of all these additions, the game retains the ‘one more time’ addictive gameplay that is inherent to all good arcade games.
Collider 2 features two modes with which to experience its gameplay; the Survival and Mission mode.
Survival mode features the classic endless obstacle course, where the speed of the ship and the frequency of obstacles constantly increase with the level of experience gained. Players compete on a leader board by earning highscores achieved by the amount of credit collected and time spent in the level.
On the other hand, the Mission mode allows players to control their ship’s acceleration but tests players’ skills by giving them different objectives to complete. These include Time Trials, Destroying Targets, Collecting Artefacts and destroying Sentries which are essentially boss battle stages.
The mission mode is divided into 6 sectors with 9 missions each. Every subsequent sector ramps up the difficulty and features new ways in which the obstacles emerge in front of the player.
Each sector also offers a change in the environment which offers players some visual variety and keeps the experience from becoming a monotonous run through a steel cylinder tube.
For a budget arcade title, Collider 2 contains decent visuals that do a great job conveying the sense of speed experienced by the player and even features VR support for an ever greater immersive speeding experience.
The thematic shift from neon coloured backgrounds of its predecessor to a space sci-fi setting is also nicely encapsulated by its strong textures, background animations, lighting and particle effects.
Similarly, the first Collider game’s electronic soundtrack is replaced by space fantasy opera genre that simulates music from Star Wars franchise to a T. This goes a long way to bring together its sci-fi presentation, that is, until you realise that Collider 2 only has one track on repeat, which gets old real fast.
This lack of variety is also evident in its gameplay as its 4 mission types are spread thin across its 54 mission campaign mode. However, for a $10 game, The Collider 2 offers enough replay value and amount of unlockable and upgradable content to satisfy any player that enjoys its high paced twitch reflex gameplay.