The enemy AI in Shadow Complex is sporadic. There are times when you enter an area that the enemy will quickly notice your presence and you will either have to take them out quickly or find cover before you get taken out. There are other times though where you can shoot an enemy that is a part of a group and the rest of the group won’t notice that one of their guys has been shot. Now when that happens it makes it easier to take the group out, however, it kind of takes you out of the moment. There were also times when I seemed to bump into an enemy and they still didn’t detect my presence. This was not a regular occurence, however, it did happen from time to time. Shadow Complex is a 2D game drawn in 3D. Your character can only move on a 2D plane, however, enemies can come at you from all sides and places. At times it can be tricky to aim at enemies that are in the background, however, you should get more used to it as you progress.
Earlier I mentioned how you can upgrade your weapons and the same is true for your character. As you progress you will find different pieces of armor, a hookshot, a propulsion pack that will let you jump higher and various other items. Utilizing these items will allow you to explore previously inaccessible areas, which will in turn allow you to find brand new items. Outside of the main campaign you will also have some “Proving Grounds” to go through where they will provide you with increasingly difficult challenges that you need to overcome. There is even an achievement for successfully completing every challenge. The achievements themselves are fairly easy to come by and you keep track of your status similar to how you did in Gears of War 2. There is an achievement where you need to headshot fifty enemies and every so often you will get a status update telling you how many more enemies to go to get that achievement. It quickly appears in the lower right hand of the screen exactly how it did in Gears. It also keeps track of what your friends did and how close you are to surpassing the next person on the leaderboard, similar to how Geometry Wars 2 did it.
Overall, Shadow Complex is a really fun game and a great way to end the second annual “Summer of Arcade”. It has a couple of problems but they don’t take away from the enjoyment of this title. Shadow Complex takes a classic formula and brings it in to the high definition era giving us a beautiful experience, in more ways than one. It is well worth the asking price and a title that everyone needs to try out. Be sure not to miss out.