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The first thing that strikes me about Luna Abyss is the scale. Not in a “see that mountain? You can climb it” kind of way, but in how the environments of this bullet-hell shooter swallow you up. This place isn’t made for you, or humans at all. You are not welcome.

You are simply meat for the machine. A prisoner who’s forced to explore a derelict, subterranean megastructure that sprawls deep beneath the surface of an alien moon. You’re still essentially shooting your way down corridors but you feel like a mote of dust inside a jet engine.

The lead developer tells me he was inspired by the environments of Destiny 2 – how they funnel you in before opening up into wide chasms that feel like a place, rather than a level for a player to move through. Hence, you know, Abyss.

luna abyss rawhead

It reminds me of Returnal because of its fast-paced bullet-hell combat. You can’t stand still if you want to survive. It forces you to strafe and jump and strafe and jump, finding your targets as you bounce around these arenas like a pinball.

Then there’s the mysterious narrative that’s drip-fed to you as you progress – usually in the form of ghostly whispers.

However, Luna Abyss isn’t a roguelite. You’ll progress through these tailor-made levels in order, rather than repeating the same sections over and over again.

I’m also a big fan of the game’s enemies. The regular grunts you’ll face are called Rawheads – presumably because they don’t have skin. Then there’s the megastructure’s organic CCTV system in the Mother-Eyes, which are cyborg faces that will alert other enemies of your presence if you don’t take them out quickly enough.

luna abyss

Combat is blended with some light platforming and puzzle-solving, but it’s nothing too strenuous. You can shoot colored barriers with different abilities on your firearm to bypass them, powering things up and down to progress.

I can take or leave this stuff, but the mysterious story is what will keep me playing when it’s finally out.

Who is Mother? Why do those lads have no skin? Why are they making prisoners delve into this infernal machine? If the writers can answer all these questions (maybe not the skin one) in a satisfying way, Luna Abyss could be a surprise hit like Returnal. 

Looking for more like this? Check our list of the best FPS games