While the Evercade family of systems is home to a wide range of cartridge collections packed with retro games, we're now seeing 'native' titles which have been designed from the ground up to work on the Evercade hardware rather than via emulation. Full Void is perhaps the most high-profile of these yet (it was recently released on Steam, Switch PS4 and Xbox One), and it's a dazzling reminder that the system is capable of so much more than just playing vintage classics.
Inspired by the likes of Another World and Flashback, Full Void is set in a dystopian future where evil robots stalk the streets searching for those brave (or foolish) enough to wander around. You assume the role of a teen on the run, and it's very much a case of avoiding danger rather than seeking it out. Much of the game's opening moments are spent familiarising yourself with the control system as you leap across rooftops and use your computer to hack various devices while trying to remain one step ahead of your tireless robotic pursuers.
Full Void's plot opens up as you progress, and the game's gorgeous hand-drawn cutscenes add much in terms of cinematic spectacle. The art and animation are both stunning, although the latter is facilitated by a very rigid control system which relies heavily on your character being in the correct place before actions can be taken.
Another downside is that the game is short, and there's not much incentive to return to it once you're done. Like the games from which it takes so much inspiration, the gameplay often feels a little too close to trial and error, but generous checkpointing prevents this from becoming too much of a problem – and it's actually quite cool seeing the various animations that play out when you fail.
With its brooding atmosphere, excellent presentation and engaging puzzles, Full Void sets a new high watermark for native Evercade releases – it's just a shame it doesn't last a little longer.