Tachyon Project (Switch eShop) Review


Two years after its debut on the Xbox One, twin-stick shooter Tachyon Project blasts its way onto the Switch. Taking inspiration from space shooters of old, and more recently Geometry Wars, this pick up and play action game feels right at home on the Switch, but some frustrating elements prevent it from being a must play.

The main star (ha) of the game is the story mode. You play as Ada, a self-aware program designed to hack into the world’s most secure servers. There’s a loose story here involving hackers, shady companies, and government bodies, but outside of the overly long introductory cutscene, the game doesn’t push the story too much. It’s a decent enough setup that doesn’t get in the way and sets some context for the shooting of different sentient defence programs on a different server in each level.

The story plays out across 10 levels of 6 waves each with objectives tasking you to either kill a certain number of a particular enemy, survive for a set time, or kill a certain number of total enemies. The objectives never vary beyond this, aside from the occasional boss battle. Despite the lack of variety, the game moves along at a nice pace without ever feeling stale and provides a consistent drip feed of new enemy types. From vortexes to mines to wall runners, the steady stream of new foes gives you something new to learn and adapt to on a regular basis. You’ll also face the occasional stealth mission, where enemies can only see you when you shoot. They’re a nice change of pace up from the usual missions, but ultimately they don’t provide a vastly different experience.

The core shooting mechanics are enjoyable, and you’ll unlock new guns, secondary weapons and special abilities along the way. Few of these unlockables are substantially better than the initial offerings but they do allow you to mix up your gameplay style and find a combination that works for you.

The most interesting aspect of how the gameplay is the health mechanic. Your time remaining and your health are one and the same. Each time you take a hit, the time you have left to complete the wave drops too, with a little bit of time restored each time an enemy is destroyed. It creates a frenetic tension to each level, with a need to stay on the move at all times and go on the offensive.


The minute to minute gameplay, whilst nothing revolutionary, is a fun time across the 3-4 hours it takes to complete, though your mileage may vary depending on your skill level. The game has a mostly steady learning curve throughout, however, some infuriating difficulty spikes ground my progress to a screeching halt. One late-game boss, in particular, took an embarrassing amount of attempts to defeat and almost made me want to put the game down entirely. Some minor smoothing out of these patches throughout the story would have made for a far more enjoyable ride. Time also carries over between waves, meaning if you don’t enter a difficult wave with a high enough time from the level before you can be fighting a hopeless battle that can only be won by starting the entire level again.

It’s an accumulation of minor annoyances like this that bring the experience down. New enemy types are introduced and explained via tiny text boxes that you’re expected to read when enemies have already started shooting at you. Occasionally the frame rate would plummet, a game breaker for a twitch shooter such as this, and would only return to normal after restarting the game. The game just feels like it could have done with a little more polish before being pushed out the door.

If you can look past these minor niggles, there’s fun to be had here. There’s an arcade mode with a variety of special challenges and a more challenging New Game plus for those who got through the first round unscathed. All modes are also playable with up to four players locally, so there’s good replay value to be found. It’s all wrapped up in a neon-lit presentation which, whilst somewhat simplistic, has an appealing Tron-esque feel and the pumping electronic soundtrack is a great accompaniment to the frantic shooting.

Overall it’s an enjoyable twin-stick shooter that scratches that arcade gaming itch. However, if you’ve played other similar games in recent times, there isn’t a whole lot here to make it an essential part of your Switch library.


Rating: 3 / 5

The Good

Weapon and enemy variety
Great soundtrack

The Bad

Frustrating difficulty spikes
Lack of polish

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Final Thoughts

Tachyon Project is a fast-paced and enjoyable shooter that will satisfy fans of the genre, but there are enough minor annoyances throughout to get in the way of the experience.

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About The Author
Andrew Searles
I like to write. I do reviews and other bits for @vooksdotnet. Still playing Pokemon Go. Will probably buy Resident Evil 4 again when they release it on my fridge.
  • Chris Souza
    February 9, 2018 at 2:26 pm

    Looks really pretty! I somehow missed this when it came to Xbox One, so I definitely want to check it out on Switch now. The health mechanic seems really interesting, reminds me a bit of Bloodborne. If you’re looking for a similar experience on Switch, check out Last Encounter. We’re launching it later this year on Switch and it has 4 player co-op!

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