A Mix of Contra, a Dash of Metroid. What Do You Get? Axiom Verge.

Interested in a Contra/Metroid-esque side-scrolling shooter? Well, today we take a look at indie game Axiom Verge.


You open your eyes to an unknown world. Your surroundings are unfamiliar because the world around you is made up of advanced technology and ancient history. Why are you there and why does everyone you encounter want to kill you? Axiom Verge follows Trace, a man who has recently been involved in a near-fatal incident that has left him unconscious. Upon waking up, Trace realizes that he has left his world and is now in an ancient yet advanced environment where everyone is out to kill him.

I don't know if I should shoot or scream.
I don't know if I should shoot or scream.

Throughout the trailer, the gameplay reminded us of multiple old-school games, such as Contra, Metroid, and Castlevania, but with an updated flare. There is about eight hours of gameplay, upgradable weapons, a sci-fi soundtrack, and more. The developer, Tom Happ, has been in the industry for some time now working on games such as Tiger Woods, End of Nations, NFL Street, and many others. He began work on Axiom Verge in 2010 as a side project and hopes to get the game released by sometime next year. You can check out his website here or watch the trailer below.

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Avatar image for mestokand

Looks great, i hope you will make it With a high difficulty and im sold!

Avatar image for 19Gam3NErD91

@AxiomVerge thanks man really appreciated,i actually work with xna;didn't think you can come up with such a cool style in it! one thing i've learned is that you have to work really hard to optimize any game you make with it,especially with such a scale and on 360.

Avatar image for AxiomVerge

@19Gam3NErD91 It's all XNA. Don't ever feel ashamed looking at somebody else's indie game; everyone has something different to contribute to this world. The fact that you even attempt it at all is what puts you ahead! :)

Avatar image for 19Gam3NErD91

@AxiomVerge The game looks really nice considering you made it on your own, and the soundtrack really gives that old school metroid vibe.i myself am an indie developer and after i looked at your game i was somehow ashamed of myself! lol btw what engine\framework or language did you use to make the game?

Avatar image for Shadowzeroace

IMO there is no such thing as a bad metroid game, i loved them all, I really look forward to this game because it blends multiple games together and i would like to see how a metroid game with contra's difficulty level would be like.

Avatar image for AxiomVerge

@OHGFawx That's the idea. The trailer shows a lot of combat, but that's because it's in such an early state. There will be a bigger focus on secrets in the final product.

Avatar image for OHGFawx

@AxiomVerge Just pack it full of secrets and i'm sold. Its looking very impressive so far, hope the development goes smoothly for you.

Avatar image for SuprSaiyanRockr

@ AxiomVerge Fair enough. Sounds cool. I'll look forward to it. And thanks for the answer :)

Avatar image for AxiomVerge

@SuprSaiyanRockr - I seem to be having issues editing my comment. I wanted to say there will be moving creatures you have to jump on and ride, as well.

Avatar image for AxiomVerge

@SuprSaiyanRockr - To a certain degree. There won't be bottomless pits and I want to limit the number of lava/poison filled pits just because I never thought they were very fun. But there will be ledges and things that you can't reach without shooting a remote drone up to them or using your grappling hook.

Avatar image for SuprSaiyanRockr

@ AxiomVerge Thanks. Does platforming form a part of the core gameplay, or is it involved in any way?

Avatar image for AxiomVerge

@SuprSaiyanRockr - Go for it! You can ask here, or even go to the QA section of my site: << LINK REMOVED >>

Avatar image for sandmanccl

Neat. Indie devs are going to run the big name publishers out of the market here soon if neat concepts like this keep coming out.

Avatar image for SuprSaiyanRockr

@ AxiomVerge The music is awesome. Can I ask you a couple of questions? I don't often get this opportunity.

Avatar image for AxiomVerge

Thanks for the compliments, folks! I know 2013 is a long way off; we're going to see what I can do about speeding that up. Getting press coverage definitely helps!! And as to some of your comments - there are some upcoming features that I hope will satisfy that itch for innovative new experiences. You don't see them in this trailer because, well, it's only the very first area of the game :-)

Avatar image for earlmccormick88

You people say it's a rip-off of Metroid. Where's Nintendo version of a Metroid sequel that plays like Super Metroid(The greatest Metroid game ever made). You know, how smooth it played, how you actually had to hold down a button to run and enable Speed Booster unlike the crappy GBA Metroids and the Wii Metroid Other M. Nostalgia is the easiest way to win my money cuz most of these new games being released is just mindless first person run-n-gun.

Avatar image for earlmccormick88

As a die hard Metroid fan, a Contra fan, I can indeed say that I am getting this. It does look like them two mixed with a lil Blaster Master.

Avatar image for Shadowzeroace

I eagerly look forward to this! Its a cornucopia of nostalgia with a twist.

Avatar image for otanikun

Looks more like a Metroid rip off, not very indie when you nearly take all inspiration from an already existing franchise.

Avatar image for Dualmask

Sounds interesting, though the graphics look a little TOO Metroid. Might as well have gone all the way and made a female lead character while they were at it.

Avatar image for Aentikraist

hey yeah what happened with Contra why dont konami do a 3d 2d contra with enhanced graphis as Castlevania dracula x chronicles for the psp they have everything to do it

Avatar image for Ranma_X_basic

As a big fan of both the Contra and Metroid games, i actually want to play this. it looks pretty sweet!!!

Avatar image for FaithCollapsing

Awesome. I'm glad to see games like this are still making the rounds.

Avatar image for malfreds

I'm really up for this game. The very bad thing is to wait until "TBD 2013". C'mon guys, this should be out before that crazy unknown date.

Avatar image for theslimdavylp

I like this

Avatar image for Spinnerweb

This game looks rather cool.

Avatar image for EnergyAbsorber

looks like Wii and PS3 owners get screwed over :(

Avatar image for visceron

Oh hell yeah!!!!! Cannot wait! Since Castlevania does not come out regularly enough to satisfy my Metroidvania appetite and Metroid left me starving long ago.

Avatar image for crunchb3rry

You all wouldn't have consoles to play on if developers didn't rip eachother off. That's how those companies made money, competition through blatantly cloning what sells. Nintendo and Sega ripped eachother off, and so on, and so on. Just look at the schmup genre. Damn near all of them spawned directly from an earlier success. Most not even bothering to differentiate themselves much.

Avatar image for eaverae

Looks awesome. Great job. Love to play / create these vintage-esk games.

Avatar image for Hirasugi

"zomg metroid rip-off" Umm you say that as if you despise having another 2D-metroidvania game. You can return back to Metroid Other M if you want

Avatar image for JONIAN


Avatar image for megakick

LOL it does look a lot like Metroid. Why not update the graphics? Looks like a NES game not even to SMS standards.

Avatar image for Renunciation

You people say "Metroid rip-off" like it's a bad thing. Wouldn't it be nice if Nintendo decided to rip-off the old-school Metroid -- instead of murdering it through homogenization with first-person shooter games, making it linear, and having dialgoue?

Avatar image for Darkbeyond

@dabears4433 Lol that was quite amusing too read! Do you post this on every new article? I enjoyed your use of descriptive words; although I cannot tell if your trolling or not. Your friends list on PS3 not be very big with an attitude like that! Anyways this game looks pretty cool, and btw this game is NOT a rip-off of Metroid; its more like a homage to classic games lost in the sands of time...

Avatar image for Printul_Noptii

It really rips off the original Metroid !

Avatar image for JKnaperek

Yay! Old-school indie is something I fully support!

Avatar image for gargungulunk

There's a fine line between rip-off and homage...and the third-line of simply making a game. This looks fun, classic and varied. and I'll play it.

Avatar image for JMcN76

How is this game not getting sued by Nintendo and Konami? It's a complete ripoff.

Avatar image for GodGundamNT1

wow what a rip off... and its so pathetic that the guy did not even attempt to at least do SNES level graphics. this game sux

Avatar image for Waldemaro83

Reminds me of BLASTER MASTER back on the NES... the music is cool gives it that METROID retro feel to it... very well done !!!

Avatar image for NightFox313

I love these old-school styled games :D

Avatar image for jerseycarter15


Avatar image for UniversalCypher

watching the trailer made me think how much i miss playing these old school games. definitely will be thinking about purchasing this game more when it nears release..

Avatar image for Junior_AIN

My kind of game.

Avatar image for vadagar1

ah I feel the blessing of the emperor return the golden age of games has come again :D

Avatar image for GunnyHath

@folkorico at 8 hours gameplay, it's no Metroid clone. But it does borrow some gameplay and mostly visual elements. It looks like a great game; hopefully they come through. I would have liked to see it be 40-100 hours and a huge world such as Metroid was. Or a new Metroid 2D for that matter :P

Avatar image for soulfulDAGGER

M u s t..play..now. Gimme!

Avatar image for ---Cipher---

Nostalgia... I loved super metroid, I loved Contra... This better be epic.

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