The Thrill of Combat is a game where you fly around in a helicopter, shooting lasers at your enemies. Instead of just describing the gameplay, I'll let the excellent video below speak for itself.
Did I forget to mention the part where you jump down out of your helicopter to harvest the organs of your vanquished enemies, literally ripping the heart from their chest with a surgical laser controlled by your mouse?
The point of the game is to harvest the organs of your defeated opponents, then return them to your ship. You have a quota to fill of these various organs. When you manage to shoot an enemy, you eject from your helicopter with the laser to harvest their organs. This leaves your helicopter, which you still control with the WASD keys, defenseless from missiles and enemy gunfire while you're using your mouse to cut out the juicy marketable bits of your enemies corpses. Then you return to your helicopter by lowering a rescue rope, which is fairly short. If you can manage all this, you have to make it back to your ship to dump a load of organs onto the deck.
This game is HARD. No beating around the bush. It took me a good 15 minutes of flailing just to get the ability to fly the helicopter without plunging immediately into the ground. But once I got past the basics of helicopter flight, I found the game very engaging. The techno music, the retro graphics, the violent helicopter battles all feel very familiar. Yet you're asked to go do something that feels terribly horrific and personal as a routine part of gameplay. They do not gloss over this, you have to drag your mouse in the shape of a kidney or lung, fairly accurately, in order to harvest it. For all the abstract graphics and laser sounds, you still are very sure you're harvesting human organs. It's an uneasy feeling, made all the more prescient by the title.
The game intentionally juxtaposes the 8-bit hyper-violence with the disturbing reality of that violence in order to invoke unease at our comfort with the former but not the latter.
Why You Should Check This Out: Challenging, unique combat game that leaves me unsure whether or not I'm okay with playing it. An ugly, disturbing little snippet of all the violence that has always permeated gaming, only this game refuses to look away. It not only stares at the hyper-violence, it laughs at our unease with it.
Warning: Do not watch this video or play this game if you suffer from epilepsy. The entire background flashes like a strobe light.
[size=20]Buy Now ($4.99)[/size]
There's no demo, but the video above is pretty representative of the gameplay if you're unsure about whether or not to buy it