All right, before I get started with this, I just want to say that I think making a game based around the struggles transgendered people face is great. It's a concept you don't see too often. So I'll give you props for that.
With that said, I don't think the concept was executed well. In fact, at first I wondered if this was satire, because it actually seemed to be REINFORCING negative stereotypes of transgendered people, and social justice bloggers in particular (obsession with pronouns, for one, not to mention "Cisbot"... without reading the disclaimer in the description, that could easily be taken the wrong way). Instead of trying to communicate what trans people have to go through on a daily basis, which is what I expected, it felt like a guide on how not to be offensive. Unless the player is taking notes, I don't think it's going to have much of an impact on anyone.
As for the game itself, it's your average vertical shooter, with the main gimmick being that you're shooting and collecting words instead of more generic objects, like ships and powerups. It actually plays pretty well. My issue is that it feels like the game exists solely to drive the message, resulting in a somewhat barebones experience. Also, I don't understand the artstyle. What does imitating a Game Boy add to the game? Not much, really. It's just sort of... there.
Overall, this could've been thought out better. The concept is good, but there are some serious flaws in the execution.
A fair review. Thank you. I wnat to comment on a view things though.
You're right that the game could have been a lot better designed and the are major flaws with its gameplay and story. It could have been also a bit broader at shoing the player how it is to be transgender.
But I still think that there was some interesting value in the original idea from the tumblr-post. Because being misgendered and insulted is a thing that trans people have to go through on a daily basis. I've seen lots of my friends get shit like this every day. I think it's an important part about being transgender.
(But in case you're interested in a game that really shows what transgender people have to go through in their lifes I recommend Dys4ria from Anna Anthropy, also here on Newgrounds, if you haven't played it yet)
Regarding the artstyle. I choose it because it is simple and quick. I could have made it black and white or Atari-like, but I like the colors of the Gameboy. 4 shades, pretty easy. And honestly I didn't want to spend a lot of time on the graphics, since I was just trying out this idea, and wanted to get back on working on my "proper" game-projects.
I love the concept, and playing it was kind of cathartic, but it just wasn't really very fun! There isn't really a whole lot of uh... Game to it.
Kinda a boring little game that tries to hard with its message, but I do like the added touch of making the male to female harder than the female to male, just like IRL.
Game tries to be too deep.
As a devotee of retro, I had to take a look.
I like the crappy green dot matrix screen, well implemented to look like an old gameboy. The gameplay itself was dull and unfun. I could see some words offending people. I know the robot doesn't care, but you might.
But I did get conglaturated joke!! Ha!