Justin Bender, guitarist from prog metal band Third Ion and ex-member/current producer of Into Eternity, has entered the world of mobile gaming with “Xero Hour”.
The game, a throwback to the 8-bit era, follows the adventures of Dr. Xero, the album cover mascot of both Third Ion albums to date, many t-shirt designs, and the subject of several songs’ lyrics. “Xero Hour” features a soundtrack comprised of 8-bit versions of Third Ion songs and includes some unreleased material from the band. An 8-bit version of “Far From Grace” by Canadian thrash act Untimely Demise serves as the game’s opening track.
The game’s synopsis is as follows:
Dr. Xero finds himself stranded, pixelated, and in need of assistance! Tap as he runs to avoid enemies, find new paths, and collect items and new power ups to help escape this hostile alien world.
Between areas you will find that Dr. Xero needs your help (well, the help of your finger) to charge his ion bombs and defend his position against waves of terrifyingly 8-bit enemies.
Later on in the game you may be able to use what you’ve collected to rebuild Dr. Xero’s ship – but will you find the shipyard, and will you have enough of the three different mineral types needed for ship-synthesis??
“Xero Hour” was developed entirely by Justin Bender under his new company Bitwad Entertainment. “Xero Hour” can be downloaded and played completely free of charge. In-app items are available for purchase, but not necessary to complete the game.
Third Ion has been working on material for what will be their third full-length album. The band released 13/8 Bit in 2015 and Biolith in 2016.