In Escape from Tethys you play a lowly weapons expert sent to planet Tethys to get a project back on schedule. In this game’s setting the galaxy’s governments are essentially gone, and our society has been taken over by science corporations. The two largest corporations are the Turan Science Corporation, and the Intergalactic Robotic Industries. You work for the Turan Science Corporation. What could possibly go wrong?
While the story is pretty much bare bones, you will be too busy trying to find your way around the station and trying not to die to worry too much about it. In various spots there are beacons or terminals that give you a little bit of narrative to remind you what is going on, and why you are trying to escape. Like many other Metroidvania titles you explore the many areas and along the way you will encounter bosses, and gain power-ups. For each power up you get you find that you can backtrack to previously explored areas and find new passages, story beacons. The game has a nice teleportation system that makes backtracking a lot more convenient. One thing that initially put me off was the lack of an autosave system. This means that you must seek out a save point after making some progress in the game. Otherwise the next time you die you will have lost that progress. The save points are numerous and spread out so you will never be too far away from them.
There were a few parts of the game that struck me as missed opportunities. So far in the game the boss fights are pretty mediocre. The bosses are not all that large on the screen. They do offer a challenge of course and it does feel gratifying when you take them down. They are just not that imposing. One other significant feature that this game lacks is the ability to duck, or lock your character and aim diagonally. In games like Axiom Verge, or even Samus Returns you were able to press a button to hold your character in one place so you could fire in any direction you were so inclined to fire. Speaking of your character, your character portrayal is fairly static. Even when you aim your gun down your character animation is still portraying you aiming forward.
Summary — Should you try it?
Escape from Tethys is just a fairly generic sci-fi themed Metroidvania game. Nothing really stands out once you get into the game, and that could be seen as a detractor. However that seems to be the game’s identity. Is that a bad thing? In my opinion, not at all. If you enjoy the genre, Escape of Tethys is a good game for the price. Escape from Tethys retails on the Nintendo eShop for $10 USD. Overall this game was a lot of fun and I intend to keep on playing it, as every time I revisit an area, I always find new parts that I hadn’t seen before. While the game isn’t as flashy as other games in its genre, it is a game that will keep you coming back for several hours of fun, and at $10 you really can’t go wrong. If you are unsure if it is your kind of game, it seems like it often goes on sale. Either way you will be happy you gave this game a try.