From the Database of Home of the Underdogs
GAME DESIGNER:Jph Wacheski
GAME DEVELOPER:Iteration Games
GAME PUBLISHER:Iteration Games
Copyright 2004, Jph Wacheski
Valence is a fun and unique arcade game that offers much more fun than its $5 registration price tag suggests. The short but concise review at Gamemakergames.com says it all about this indie underdog that deserves every action gamer’s attention:
“In a world of sequels and clones, it’s always nice to see games that have originality. I don’t know that Jph Wacheski has a rival among GM creators in consistently delivering high-quality original games. And this one is, of course, no exception. In Valence, you control a birdlike digital lifeform that inhabits an energy well in the “Temporal Void.” You can orbit the well, which resembles a small sun, or land on its surface. As long as you are on the surface, you gain energy. When you gain enough energy, you advance to the next level. But you aren’t the only one attracted to the well–you must deal with an onslaught of insectoid attackers and other creatures as you attempt to gather energy.
Other than basic movement, you can do three things: Press M to fire energy shots (which depletes your energy), press N to switch your firing direction (in or out), and press B to activate your shield (which also consumes energy).
Graphics and sounds in Valence are simple and abstract, and at the same time very effective. The flashing colors, trailing shadows, and electrical bolts create a convincing atmoshphere, and the sound only adds to the effect. I especially like the acceleration sound as your energy increases.
This can be a pretty challenging game the first time you play it. But it doesn’t take long to get used to the controls and the strategy, and it’s worth the effort to do so. Speaking of strategy, you have a choice of approaches. You can cautiously stay on or near the surface or you can fly high above it, and both and both have their advantages. One more thing on strategy–when on the well’s surface, press and hold the down arrow key to circle faster. This can make a big difference.
If you’ve played and enjoyed any of Wacheski’s past titles, you’ve probably don’t need my recommendation to convince you to try Valence. I suppose it may not appeal to everyone, but I’m a fan, and would certainly recommend that you try it.”