Hold onto your itchy trigger finger and never let go
Some games have over-elaborate twenty minute intros explaining the back story and gently introducing you to the characters and gameplay. Prismatic Solid is not one of those games. This is a classic Japanese vertical shoot-em up developed by Japanese Indie developer YO1 KOMORI. There is no intro or story of note with Prismatic Solid; it just throws you straight into the game and apart from a short tutorial in the first stage, you’re on your own.
What makes Prismatic Solid different from other shmup’s is its setting. It is set in an abstract world of shapes and lights, reminiscent of modern art and this makes it one of the most visually stunning games you will play. The rippling effects on the Water stage especially are so realistic. Speaking of stages, the game is made up of five of them: Ridge, Water, Space, Atoms and Shaft, all of which have their own unique look and feel. The Ridge stage for example looks like you are flying over a molten lava world full of asteroids, whereas the Atom stage looks like you are flying over some sort of giant kids ball pool (I half expected Sheldon Cooper to pop out and shout “Bazinga!”)
To make your way through these stages your ship is equipped with six different weapons. These will help you defeat any enemy that stands in your way. You also have three neon coloured tentacles that act as shields protecting you from the onslaught of bullets. These tentacles will change formation depending upon which weapon you are firing and will grow as you collect power-ups along the way. You can also send these tentacles out to attack and clear the screen. At the end of each stage there is a boss to defeat. If you manage to make your way passed all the stages without losing your three lives the game loops the stages, this time increasing the number of enemies and end of stage bosses. If you thought the screen was hectic on the first loop just wait until your second.
The controls for Prismatic Solid can be mapped to the buttons of your choosing but by default you fire with either L2, R2 or triangle; scroll through your weapons with L1 and L2; and use cross, circle and square to send the tentacles to sweep the enemies.
For such a short game Prismatic Solid certainly has a surprise up its sleeve trophy-wise; it has a platinum trophy! To get it, though, isn’t going to be easy as one of the trophies requires you to score 2 million points in one run without continuing. Other trophies included are earned by completing stages, having perfect runs on each stage and eliminating enemies.
Prismatic Solid is one of the most visually stunning shmups I have ever played. With only having five stages (and the extra one) on a continuous loop it is not going to be the longest game you will play but if you are a fan of shmups you should definitely add it to your collection.
NelMaNo Rating 7/10