Op art collides with Treasure for abstract shmup Myriad
What you’ll find sitting at roughly the intersection of Rez, Hohokum and
PixelJunk Eden on a Venn diagram is Erlend Grefsrud’s Myriad. Each stark, abstract level in this top-down shooter is expanded as you destroy the enemies that populate it, fallen aggressors bursting into a new piece of circular space for you to patrol, but also calling in reinforcements. Build up enough of these spatial memorials and you can detonate overlapping circles to cause chain reactions – if you hit a set quota, you’ll get points, new or upgraded weapons, and begin a new round.
“Every round makes a different level, like a kind of player-centric procedural generation, and different weapons and playstyles make for different levels, too,” Grefsrud says.
The number of enemies onscreen spirals upwards as you build out, ensuring that it’s increasingly difficult to hone the placement of each circle.
“Myriad always coalesces in a great coming apart where all the trouble you’ve made for yourself just yields and becomes a beat-matched fireworks display,” Grefsrud says. “The density and vivacity of the art depends on the player’s ability to handle complexity. The more confidently you play, the more graceful your arcs, the bigger your chain reactions, the bolder the compositions and denser the imagery when it reaches a head.”
While Grefsrud has yet to fix a release date, Myriad will be coming to PS4, Vita and Steam.