E3 2011 Impressions: Centipede Infestation (Nintendo Wii, 3DS)

Atari is bringing a variety of Atari classics to the modern world, and one such game for 2011 is Centipede.

Developed by 2D specialists WayForward, Centipede is not set in 2D but rather in 3D, with confined arenas where the player can move around freely.

Much like an arcade shooter such as Smash TV, the player moves with the D-pad, and then shoots with the analog stick. On 3DS, the shooting mechanic is mapped to the four face buttons, which is a bit more awkward in execution but still works.

The main focus of the game is bringing the core concepts of the arcade original – shooting and bugs – to a new generation. The player shoots frantically at the bugs incoming, with some twists. There are some weapon upgrades, including a flame thrower and a green blob spread gun, as well as special enemies that when defeated, “join” the player in attacking the bugs.

The Wii version uses the Wii Remote and Nunchuk to control, while the 3DS version seems a bit scaled down but has a nice 3D effect to the arenas.

The target of the game is kids 6-14, to give a shooter-like gameplay experience with a bit less complexity. Centipede Infestation is out later this year.

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