The developer behind retro-tinged shooters Super Stardust and ResoGun returns with an astonishing twin-stick masterpiece

There is a famous story behind the making of Robotron 2084, the seminal 1982 arcade game which provides the clear inspiration for Nex Machina. Designer Eugene Jarvis, the genius behind hit coin-op Defender, broke his wrist in a car accident and found himself unable to use a fire button. Determined to keep working on a new game project, he and colleague Larry DeMar hacked together their own controller using two joysticks; one to move the onscreen character, one to fire a weapon. The twin-stick shooter was born.

Thirty-five years later, we have the latest title from Housemarque Games, the Finish studio that’s spent two decades rediscovering and perfecting classic arcade game dynamics. Its Super Stardust and Resogun titles are exemplary old school scrolling shooters, catching the speed and style of arcade blasters but enriching them with modern era visual exuberance. Nex Machina continues that legacy – and then some.

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