I downloaded the F2P Galak-Z game that released last week for mobile (and Switch), and it’s… acceptable. There are some pretty significant changes to the structure and gameplay (it’s not a rogue-like, there’s no more transforming or sliding, and missiles and grabbing are meter-based special moves), but the action is largely intact.
The F2P hooks are very restrictive. You play missions to get crates that unlock on a timer that include parts to upgrade your ship. You can of course spend premium currency to hurry up those timers. But you never get enough parts from a single crate to actually craft a new upgrade, so you have to run these same missions multiple times, waiting a minimum of 10 minutes to unlock each crate. The game starts out easy but quickly gets really tough if you don’t grind out these upgrades. Galak-Z was always a difficult game, but in the original game you could feel confident that was the experience 17-Bit intended. This game is tainted by the F2P mechanics in a way that casts doubt about whether a specific mission is hard because it’s supposed to be a satisfying challenge, or it’s hard because they want me to spend money.
The gameplay, graphics, and humor are faithful enough to the original Galak-Z feel that I’m sticking with it for now, but the experience is definitely marred by the presence of timers and microtransactions in a way that’s impossible to ignore. While I know F2P is the most lucrative choice for a mobile game, I really wish the Switch had gotten a port of the original Galak-Z rather than this.