The discussion has moved over to Discord

Home Forums Other Games NeonXSZ or Sublevel Zero?

RSS Feed
Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
  • Author
  • #3399
    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 4
    Replies: 22

    I’ve got both games on my wishlist…waiting for a sale of some sort.
    Any opinions on either of these two games?
    Lately I’ve been playing the Overload demo A LOT, competing with my brother for high scores

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 18
    Replies: 81

    If you like Overload, I think you’ll really enjoy Sublevel Zero. Very Descent-like, and the whole procedural generation/crafting/permadeath thing really lends itself to multiple playthroughs. It reminds me a lot of Descent 1, if Descent 1 didn’t have save files and the bot AI was more intelligent. 🙂

    NeonXSZ is it’s own thing. I have it, it’s fun, but I’m not a massive fan. It’s also very, very different from Descent, Forsaken, Overload, etc.; it’s an apples-to-oranges scenario. It’s physics, graphics, and combat are really solid and I can’t praise the developer highly enough for pulling off such a polished, stable product in the end… But it’s pretty repetitive, as it’s an action RPG with little to no storyline. So, essentially, you engage in combat so you can get better weapons so you can engage in more combat.

    Also, don’t forget to check out Retrovirus! Everyone forgets that game. It’s refreshingly different, but very, very fun.

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 4
    Replies: 22

    I have retrovirus. finished the sp game, tried the mp game (it was meh), never played it since.

    Thanks for the feedback on SLZ and NXSZ

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 17
    Replies: 88

    Honestly, I was very disappointed in Sublevel Zero. Enough so that this is the only game I have ever refunded on Steam. It really didn’t do it for me.

    I was very excited when it was first announced and shown off as I had kind of forgotten about Descent at that point, and this awoke all those dormant memories of joyous romps through the mines. Unfortunately, it’s really nothing like Descent at all. It does handle pretty well with a controller, I will give them that, but pretty much everything else was disappointing to me.

    • The graphics are pretty, but it’s so stylized that the environments end up incoherent. It seems like everything is random shapes and colors. I don’t really understand what any of these materials or structures are supposed to be, so there’s nothing for my mind to grab onto to ground itself. It’s just very visually confusing.
    • As Luke mentioned, ammo is very scarce which requires you to stay very conservative, and even so I would run out of ammo which is ultimately just not very fun.
    • Adding crafting sounds like an interesting idea, but it’s either not implemented very well or ultimately just doesn’t really work for this type of game. You are constantly picking up weak weapons that you presumably need to break down, along with a crafting currency, necessitating constant detours into a very confusing menu system that just takes away from the actual fun part of flying around and shooting things.
    • Procedural levels is again a neat idea to make every run different, but I think one of the most important things that made Descent such a classic is the masterfully handcrafted level design. A procedural system will simply never equal what a clever level designer can create. I think it could be fun to have an optional “survival mode” addition using a procedural system, kind of like the Endurance DLC for Rise of the Tomb Raider, but it’s just not good enough to hang the entire game on.
    • Lastly, the nail in the coffin for me is the roguelike structure. This is entirely preferential on my part, I understand plenty of people like this kind of thing, but it simply does not work for me. As a grown man with a wife, kids, a full time job, a house, and a thousand other responsibilities, I simply do not have the time to sit down and play a game for hours on end to make some kind of progress, and the lack of an ability to save and exit whenever I want or need to, forcing me to start from the beginning every single time, is absolutely insane. I don’t care what your game is, I don’t care about your “design principles”, I don’t care what kind of feelings you want to elicit from your players. Not allowing me to exit at any point and pick it up again later with minimal lost progress is utter stupidity and does not work unless you literally have nothing in your life more important than video games and nothing that could ever pull you away, and honestly, that should not be the case.

    Ok, rant over. Sorry, I just really wanted to like this game and losing my progress whenever I had to quit absolutely infuriated me. It is just not the game I wanted, which of course absolutely does not mean that it can’t be exactly the game someone else wants. I’m just so happy about Overload for many reasons, and my disappointment in Sublevel Zero only makes me more excited for this, the game I really want.

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 4
    Replies: 22

    Thanks Darth.
    I’m in a very similar situation. I didnt realize that you cant save ever.
    That’s actually a deal breaker for me. Too many things on my plate.
    Sometimes I have a few hours to play. Other times I just have 15-30 minutes, which makes
    playing Overload perfect for my schedule.

    Thanks again for the input.

    I’m really likeing what I see about NeonXSZ though. Seems to be a great game from all I’ve read (if it was on sale, I’d buy it right now).


    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 18
    Replies: 220

    NeonXSZ has infinite turn speed and basically no textures making it look like Tron. It also uses the Unity engine. Last time I checked is wasn’t very joystick friendly, you may not be able to get your joystick to work properly (though works very well with a 2Dmouse.) Be sure to check out YouTube, here’s one video I found

    Apparently Luke Schneider worked on SubLevel Zero. I haven’t played it yet but it looks really cool I like that fact that it doesn’t have the roll into yaw effect, but that’t just a personal preference.

    I tried the Retrovirus alpha demo and I didn’t care for the low framerate. If only they made another demo.

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 18
    Replies: 81

    Actually, you can save in Sublevel Zero. When you finish each of the six sublevels, the game allows you to save your progress and continue where you left off (each sublevel takes roughly 15 minutes to an hour to complete, max). You just can’t save mid-level and return when you want to – also, when you continue, your save is gone, so if you die, it’s game over. That’s all part of the fun though – Every move and decision you make is important, because when you die, it’s back to the start you go. 🙂

    I will say though that you really can’t go wrong with either game… I know some 6DOF fans are “meh” about SL0 and completely head-over-heels about NeonXSZ, whereas I and others are exactly opposite. But I respect NeonXSZ and definitely got my 15-or-so bucks worth out of it.

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 1
    Replies: 24

    Sublevel Zero and Retrovirus were both excellent, despite their shortcomings. Sublevel Zero had no multiplayer, was a perma-death rogue-like in the spirit of Descent, and played exceedingly well. Retrovirus had multiplayer and its single-player story was quite entertaining (Descent meets Tron 2.0), but had horrendous performance problems and bugs when first released, so nobody gave it the time of day by the time it had been polished from a turd to a golden bauble of great value. They were both genuinely worth more attention than they got, even if they maybe didn’t deserve it on day one of their release, and that’s a shame.

    Shortly after the game was released on Steam, there was talk of Sublevel Zero adding multiplayer at some point, but I don’t know if they’re sticking to that plan or not.

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 57
    Replies: 421

    …by the time it had been polished from a turd to a golden bauble of great value…

    The funny thing here is that the last time I played Retrovirus I seem to remember the enemies looking just like little 6Dof flying turds ;P I did like the gameplay though 🙂

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 4
    Replies: 122

    By the way, I have serious bugs not only in Retrovirus, but also in D2X-XL on some levels. I do not know why. Of course, it’s bearable, but annoying.

    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 10
    Replies: 185

    Although I wouldn’t disagree with what darthkarki says above, I still enjoyed Sublevel Zero a lot more than NeonXSZ. Perhaps because I was in the middle of a 6dof drought at the time, but I enjoy the procedural and roguelike nature of that game. It’s a real challenge to get through all the levels without dying, so it’s more like an old-fashioned arcade game in that sense (which I grew up on, which perhaps is why I don’t mind roguelikes!) and the limited ammo is probably necessary for that, but it can be frustrating when you run out of things to shoot with.

    NeonXSZ is just… weird. I don’t know, I just can’t get into it at all. Perhaps I’ll keep trying and it’ll click with me one day, but it just seems off. Perhaps it’s because I’m trying to play it like Descent, but it has a very different way of doing things.

    Retrovirus was fun for a while, but I played it on my older PC and the frame-rate just wasn’t up to the task. I keep meaning to go back now I have a decent GPU. I didn’t enjoy it as much as Sublevel Zero because the flying experience was poor due to the low framerate, but again with a decent machine I’d probably like it more.

    There are various other 6dof games out there I keep meaning to try, but then I just load up the Overload demo instead. 🙂

    What’s the state of that other Descent game these days? You know the one. 😉

    Topics: 10
    Replies: 29

    Sublevel Zero leans very heavily on its rogue-like aspects but sadly they didn’t really understand what makes rogue-likes enjoyable. I have a review on Steam if anyone is interested in a more analytical breakdown of why I don’t recommend it. (

    But in short, they’ve spliced together very bland rooms that are designed by hand by using a procedural process. This is great for creating unique mazes but they have a very limited variety of rooms so the end result is that it becomes tedious very quickly. SLZ basically has nobody on the team who understands good environmental design and has no concept of how to produce interesting situations through skillful management of space, the AI and the player’s abilities. For example, many of the rooms are just an open space with exits and bots are randomly spawned inside. As soon as you attempt to enter a busy room one bot aggro’s and then so do all the others. The result is an endless volley of laser-fire at the porthole you just came through. The choices are then to run forwards blindly into the room or back up to safety. However, if you back up then you end up with no way to enter the room as the bots cluster towards the entrance and your battle becomes very dull as you now have them all in a choke-point.

    Because the level design is so poor, you then have to look at the rogue-like elements for replay value. But unfortunately the game doesn’t fare very well here either. Rogue-like’s offer replay value through gameplay choices. Classically you have your strong melee/weak ranged, weak melee/strong ranged and perhaps more situational builds that offer stealth, proxy battling via pets and so on. Sublevel Zero doesn’t do this at all. You have your usual weaponry for close/mid/long range but you can carry all of these in your inventory at once so your ‘build’ can be changed at a moments notice. Sure, you can force constraints upon yourself by choosing to go sniper only but there is no incentive to do that.

    SLZ ends up having the fortune of being a mediocre game released at a time when there was absolutely no competition in the 6D genre and to a fan-base that was ravenous for any 6D titles. Under any other circumstances it wouldn’t have gained much of a following due to its quality.

    Haunted ParraspHaunted Parrasp
    Kickstarter Backer
    Topics: 31
    Replies: 428

    Sublevel zero had its flaws but I still enjoyed it. That being said I normally only really play it when I’m bored with too much time… it’s a great game to have when you get snowed in for days like I was last week.
    The ship control is good and the combat is fun — I don’t generally like roguelikes but it still managed to catch my attention in a good way.

    Haven’t tried neon yet, and I’m not sure I will.

    Ship’s cat, MPSV Iberia
    Check out his original music @

Next Unread Topic:
Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)

Forums are currently locked.

Previous Topic: AutoHotKey Hat Switch Work-Around Next Topic: Electric / EMP / Viral Weaponry