Pixel action digging always feels real good
I’ve been working some long hours at the (home) office lately, and coupling that with long(er) hours in some huge RPGs. It’s tiring trudging through so much stuff, even if it’s rewarding. Sometimes I need a palate cleanser, the kind of game that allows me to focus less on solving things and more on doing things. That’s not to say that a game like this needs to be mindless, only that it needs to move my attention away from something and let me push buttons until action happens and my mind forgets whatever it is that I was working on.
Molton Studio and Raiser Games’ DIG: Deep In Galaxies does just that. The game is a 2D pixel platformer that drops a twin-stick bullet hell into roguelike open world exploration in space. It’s a mouthful but so is the game, in several good ways.
There’s a lot going on, from bullets and lasers flying everywhere to destructible terrain and enemies that try their best not to leave you alone. But it’s also so very, very satisfying to see all of this stuff blow up. A lot! There’s a light story in the game, but the basic experience involves flying between planets and asteroids and excavating the worlds for loot. Everything feels like it can be taken apart, blown to bits, creating paths for us to explore further or pull up our bug ship and fly off to the next hotspot to dig some more. It’s a straightforward idea executed fairly well, and with variety in biomes and locales that I genuinely want to see what the next planet will be like, and what else I can blow up (or chop up, depending on the weapon I’m wielding). Oh, and it’s pretty great on the SteamDeck, where it seems to fit so perfectly while we sit on the couch and watch the latest episode of whatever we’re binging (or forced to binge with the family). We can even play with friends in multiplayer, if we want to blow up things together, but things can get VERY CHAOTIC on screen — although, that may be the point.
There are generous helpings of games like Dig Dug and Terraria and SteamWorld Dig baked in, but DIG manages to make all of the details work together. But really, the game seems to know exactly what it is and it revels in it: a constantly growing series of explosions and things to interact with, and let us not care about what damage we cause as long as we’re enjoying it.
It feels good to dig, and to throw bombs at the stuff that we’re digging.
This review is based on a Steam code sent to SideQuesting by the publisher. It originally appeared on the March 1st episode of The SideQuest. Images and video courtesy Raiser Games and Molton Studio.