Nex Machina

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Nex Machina
Nex Machina logo.png
Director(s)Harry Krueger
Producer(s)Jari Kantomaa
Programmer(s)Tero Tarkiainen
Artist(s)Mikko Sinisalo
Composer(s)Ari Pulkkinen
Platform(s)PlayStation 4
Release20 June 2017
Genre(s)Multi-directional shooter
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

Nex Machina is a shoot 'em up video game developed and published by Housemarque. The game was released in June 2017 for the PlayStation 4 video game console and Windows-based personal computers. Tentatively known as The Jarvis Project during development, veteran arcade game designer Eugene Jarvis served as a creative consultant on the project.


Nex Machina is a twin-stick shoot 'em up video game played from a top-down perspective.[1][2] Players move through rooms shooting waves of enemies while attempting to save humans.[1] Power-ups and weapon upgrades are dispersed throughout levels.[1]

A player fighting off enemies while trying to save an human. You can see destroyed enemies exploding into voxels.


Jarvis in 2016

Nex Machina was developed by Finnish video game studio Housemarque with designer Eugene Jarvis serving as a creative consultant.[3][1] Jarvis is known for his role in designing arcade shoot 'em ups such as Defender (1981), Robotron: 2084 (1982), and Smash TV (1990).[1] At the 2014 D.I.C.E. Awards, Housemarque's founders Ilari Kuittinen and Harri Tikkanen met with Jarvis and asked him if he would be interested in collaborating on a game.[3] Jarvis' games, particularly Defender, was a source of inspiration for Housemarque's 2013 game Resogun.[4] For the design of Nex Machina, they combined elements from Jarvis' previous shoot 'em ups and Resogun.[3][1] The development team experimented with different setups for the game's firing mechanics.[4] They followed a different design philosophy than their 2016 game Alienation by choosing not to incorporate character progression systems in Nex Machina.[4]

Nex Machina is powered by a significantly enhanced version of the game engine and voxel technology that was used for Resogun.[4][3] The inclusion of a volumetric rendering technique known as Signed Distance Fields allows for a smooth transition between complex 3D meshes and voxel particles to give them more flexibility in how objects appear on the screen.[4] The studio dubbed their art style for the game as cablepunk—a darker take on cyberpunk.[3]


Nex Machina was unveiled at the PlayStation Experience in December 2016.[1] Housemarque signed a deal with Sony Interactive Entertainment to bring the game to the PlayStation 4 video game console.[3] In March 2017, Housemarque announced that the game will also be released on Windows-based personal computers.[5] Nex Machina was released on 20 June 2017;[6] it is Housemarque's first self-published game.[3] Housemarque is also considering creating a Nex Machina arcade cabinet with Jarvis' company Raw Thrills.[3]


Aggregate score
Metacritic(PC) 84/100[7]
(PS4) 88/100[8]
Review scores
Edge9/10 [10]
PC Gamer (US)89/100[12]

The game received generally positive reviews from critics. Metacritic calculated an average score of 88 out of 100 for the PlayStation 4 version based on 45 reviews[8] and 84 out of 100 for the Windows version based on 16 reviews.[7]

Eurogamer ranked the game eighth on their list of the "Top 50 Games of 2017".[13]


The game was nominated for "PlayStation Game of the Year" at the Golden Joystick Awards,[14] for "Best PC Game" in Destructoid's Game of the Year Awards 2017,[15] and for "Best Action Game" in IGN's Best of 2017 Awards.[16] It won the award for "Best Indie Action Game" in Game Informer's 2017 Action Game of the Year Awards.[17] It won "Big Screen Game of the Year 2017" and "Finnish Game of the Year 2017" in the Finnish Game Awards 2018,[18] and was also nominated for "Visual Design" and "Music Design" at the 2018 Develop Awards.[19]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g McWhertor, Michael (7 December 2016). "Nex Machina is an explosive spiritual successor to Smash TV and Robotron". Polygon. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
  2. ^ Matulef, Jeffrey (3 December 2016). "Housemarque and Eugene Jarvis reveal Nex Machina". Eurogamer. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Souppouris, Aaron (3 December 2016). "The follow-up to 'Resogun' is a Hail Mary for arcade shooters". Engadget. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
  4. ^ a b c d e Maxwell, Ben (2 February 2017). "Voxel Perfect". Edge. No. 302. Future Publishing. pp. 69–75. ISSN 1350-1593.
  5. ^ Orry, James (14 March 2017). "Housemarque's Nex Machina is also coming to PC". Retrieved 14 March 2017.
  6. ^ Phillips, Tom (19 May 2017). "Housemarque and Eugene Jarvis' Nex Machina has a release date". Eurogamer. Retrieved 29 May 2017.
  7. ^ a b "Nex Mechina: Death Machine for PC". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  8. ^ a b "Nex Mechina: Death Machine for PS4". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  9. ^ Devore, Jordan (23 June 2017). "Review: Nex Machina". Destructoid. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  10. ^ "Nex Machina". Edge. No. 309. Future. September 2017. pp. 104–106. ISSN 1350-1593.
  11. ^ D'Aprile, Jason (21 June 2017). "Nex Machina Review". GameSpot. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  12. ^ Schilling, Chris (29 June 2017). "Nex Machina Review". PC Gamer. Retrieved 30 March 2017.
  13. ^ Eurogamer staff (30 December 2017). "Eurogamer's Top 50 Games of 2017: 10-1". Eurogamer. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  14. ^ Gaito, Eri (13 November 2017). "Golden Joystick Awards 2017 Nominees". Best in Slot. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  15. ^ Carter, Chris (12 December 2017). "Nominees for Destructoid's Best PC Game of 2017". Destructoid. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  16. ^ "Best of 2017 Awards: Best Action Game". IGN. 20 December 2017. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  17. ^ Miller, Matt (5 January 2018). "2017 Action Game Of The Year Awards (Page 3)". Game Informer. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  18. ^ "The Finnish Game Awards 2018 Winners". Neogames. 24 April 2018. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  19. ^ MCV staff (21 May 2018). "Announcing the Develop Awards 2018 nominations shortlist". MCV. Retrieved 4 September 2018.

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