Size and length of a game is often measured in time played, though Guxt brought home just how wonky such a measuring method is. I’ve played to the end of the third level of this five-level shmup, but needed actually one hour to get even so far. And these levels are small, like 3 minutes at most if you manage them perfectly. Some games generate gameplay by an endless cavalcade of content, others by racking up difficulty so high that you’ll die a thousands times before getting forward. It’s a viable approach to extend play time, though I prefer save points, a health bar and some other accommodations for less skilled players.
If the game wasn’t that good, I probably would have given up after dying countless times in the first level (I’m just not good at shmups, that’s why I love emulators and save stats). Guxt shows the same level of polish Pixel has applied to his other two big games (Cave Story and Ikachan). Controls are perfect, the pixel graphics are damn beautiful and the game is just pure fun to play. If it wasn’t so hard, I probably would even try to beat it. But I have only so much patience with seeing the same level again and again. That’s why I prefer a lower difficulty and a higher number of levels. It might be not the hardcore experience some crave, but at least more players will actually see most of the content (thankfully there are also youtube playthroughs).