Your ship has crashed on an alien planet and you’re surrounded by hostile life forms. Is this the plot pitch for a new John Carpenter movie? Nope, just a little gem of a game by C404. Stranded is a standard defense game, but it doesn’t have any money or major breaks between the levels to travel to a mysterious store where you can buy more weapons and ammo out of thin air. Then again, what are aliens doing carrying around weapons that you can use against them and where are they hiding them?

WASD is used for the standard controls here. There’s no rotating weapons in your inventory, just R to reload your weapon. Aiming and firing is controlled by the mouse, so that’s par for the course. Controls are very responsive and your character moves pretty quickly, so dodging enemies while you’re reloading is possible.

The graphics are nothing to get giddy over. In fact, your legs look a bit like stuffed sausages when you first see them pop out from underneath your character. Animations are minimal but get the point across. What surprised me is that the blood spray from enemies stays around from level to level. In a lot of ways Stranded is like a less polished version of Endless Zombie Rampage except for having no base to defend.

Sound effects and music really make this game. The voice-overs are decent but the music…man, the music is just great stuff. The gunfire sounds really good but the hit sound is lacking. That and the fact that the aliens make no noise whatsoever when they are hit or die is a little strange. A few extra sound effects would have helped this along.

5/10. I’m no artist myself, but I’d coordinate with one were I to create a game. I know my limitations.

8/10. Fast, frantic, and fun. Can’t ask for much more.

7/10. Heavy metal to kill by, excellent.

7/10. Standard defense game with enemies coming at your from all sides. Watch your back!

8/10. Standard controls for a standard defense game. Tried and true saves the day.

Were the graphics a bit more polished I’d give this higher marks. As is, I’m scoring this as 7/10.

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