Formerly shareware, this intense vertical shoot 'em up is now absolutely free! Rejoice!
Once upon a time, there was a game called Pteroglider. The name wasn't - and isn't - so catchy. But the point is, it used to be a game you had to pay for. Now you don't because Codeminion released it for free. What generous souls they are.
Some history: People thought this game was too hard, so they didn't play it. Those who did, weren't many. In fact only 32 people bought the full game (true!) but now, it can be forgiven its past and seen in the new, glorious, widely accessible view of the free game market.
First - the graphics. They're passable. For a game which is just over four years old, they are acceptable at the job they do. Above all, the boss levels are the most spectacular, with each of them having their own distinct look. The pulsating... thing... at the end of round two or three was definately worth a double-take.
As for the difficulty - I didn't find it so bad. Some have said "its too hard even on easy" but I finished easy mode and half of the second difficulty on my first play through. So I don't have a problem with that. The two problems I had were: the width of the ship made hitting enemy bullets easy, and sometimes the backgrounds and foregrounds blended together, causing me to duck/hit things I didn't need to.
I thought it was fun. You might think otherwise. That's fine and acceptable. The Abuse-like controls of moving with the WASD keys and using the mouse to aim is very useful, allowing for greater enemy diversity and full use of the whole screen. I found it to be intuitive and enjoyable. In fact, I'd like to see the mechanism applied again in the future.
In summary: I thought it was great. It was explosive, had plenty enough pick-ups, the machine guns (which overheat at times and become basically useless - so watch out) were well balanced and allowed for maximum destruction when available. The enemy waves flowed well between intense and giving you breathing space and in short - I just thought it was good. How about you?