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TxK is an explosion of psychedelics and retro shooting

Llamasoft's successor to the classic Atari Jaguar Game Tempest 2000, TxK, is a colorful mix of retro shooting, beat-heavy tunes and arcade-style fun, as demonstrated by our time with the game.

We got a chance to explore several of the game's levels on PlayStation Vita during a press event in San Francisco. Like its predecessor, TxK offered us a straightforward experience: take out bad guys while collecting power-ups and health. Enemies exploded in bursts of color from a single string of shots, while we were able to throw "smart bombs" to wipe out entire screenfulls of foes in a rainbow shower.

The game's levels are based on different shapes — neon outlines set against a dark background. TxK's first level began with a simple enough circle. We controlled a small ship that could only travel on the shape's line; by jumping, however, we could boost ourselves above the shape and deliver widespread damage. As we slid to the left and right, the game propelled us forward, with enemies flying from the center of the screen at a rapid pace. TxK felt similar to old school titles such as Galaga, but with a trippy, acid-driven twist.

Other levels challenged us to try out planes in the form of boxes, U's, ovals and more. We played through five different levels, which seemed to become progressively harder. Enemies were tougher to take out, and the different shapes made dodging enemies and obstacles more of a trial.

An official release date for TxK has not yet been announced, though the game is expected to launch for PlayStation Vita this year.

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