Sunday, January 16, 2011

Winter Break part 3

Four games this time since I forgot to update yesterday.

And Yet It Moves
Developer: Broken Rules
Genre: Puzzle platformer

AYIM is a pretty standard platformer, with a simple twist. In addition to being able to run and jump, you can rotate the world around you in 90° increments to change the direction of gravity.

Completion Rate:
Not sure? Fair way into the game, no idea how much I have left.

AYIM takes a bit of getting used to. WASD is used to control your character, and the arrow keys rotate the world. It also takes a bit of getting used to in order to know how fast you can be falling before hitting the ground will cause death. The game can get quite difficult and might be a bit frustrating at first, but checkpoints are abundant and will point you in the right direction. Overall, the levels are extremely well designed, and figuring out how to manipulate the environment to complete the level is quite rewarding.

Blueberry Garden
Developer: Erik Svedäng
Genre: Platformer…?

Blueberry Garden is somewhat hard to describe. You are set in the middle of a strange world, and are given no instructions or directions on how to proceed, though an overall objective is hinted at. Your character can fly and interact with the various objects in the environment (different kinds of fruits and animals, rocks, etc) and can teleport large objects to your starting point, where they are placed onto an ever growing and magically balanced tower.

Completion Rate:
Beat the game. I think.

Blueberry Garden is interesting. The gameplay is somewhat simplistic, your character cannot die. The ‘objective’ of the game is quite easy to accomplish once you figure it out. It’s really just… strange. But on the other hand… The environment is alive in its own way, and the plants and animals will react if you introduce something new to their immediate vicinity. Each type of fruit has a different effect on your character when you eat it, such as allowing you to travel underwater easily or fly higher. The piano music by Daduk is beautiful and captivating. The atmosphere is entrancing. Blueberry Garden is not a very good game. But it is a wondrous experience.

Puzzle Bots
Developer: Lively Ivy
Genre: Adventure

Puzzle Bots takes place in Dr. Hugo’s Factory for Making Robots, where things are not quite normal. You control the robots Hero (carries and uses objects), Ultrabot (pushes large objects), Kelvin (has a flamethrower), Ibi (mermaid version of Hero), and Bomchelle (throws bombs) on their adventures throughout the factory, and uncover a dark secret behind the factory’s past.

Completion Rate:
Beat the game.

On one hand, Puzzle Bots is witty and entertaining. The characters have personality, and the dialogue is well written. The puzzles are decent, with each robot’s unique ability having a role to play. On the other hand… that’s all that can really be said in favor of Puzzle Bots. The mouse controls are the biggest problem. Everything is done by clicking on it, whether it is bot movement, selection, environment interaction, etc. Because of that, it becomes extremely frustrating when there are many objects or bots in one area, as you will frequently end up switching bots or interacting with the wrong object. The levels all take place on a 2D background, which works fine for the earlier levels, but later becomes extremely frustrating to discern which parts are accessible and navigate through the level. The solution for the last level is absurdly complex, which only compounded the previously mentioned issues. The story is minimally developed over the course of the game. Various things are hinted at, but rather than allowing the player to try and discover the truth behind the factory, the game suddenly just throws a climax and conclusion at the player, and the ending is completely out of the blue. Overall, the humor is not nearly enough to counteract the downfalls, and Puzzle Bots is just not really worth even the short amount of time it takes to beat.

Developer: Hothead Games
Genre: Action

You play as Deathspank, who is a Dispenser of Justice, a Vanquisher of Evil, and a Hero to the Downtrodden, on his search for The Artifact, a powerful… artifact of some sort. Along the way you’ll fight hordes of enemies, and slay them all using a huge variety of weapons.

Completion Rate:
Completed game

Deathspank is great. The entire world is just incredibly over the top, and the fully voiced dialogue is absolutely hilarious. The gameplay is loot-driven (feels quite similar to Borderlands, but as a top-down hack-and-slash rather than a first person shooter), and there are lots of sidequests to do. The story is a little bare, mostly just serving to move Deathspank from one place to the next. And that’s pretty much all there is to Deathspank. If you hate this kind of game, then stay away. But if you can tolerate the loot-driven grindfest, then play Deathspank for the laughs along the way. Just be warned, things do get a little boring near the end, as it is really easy to reach the level 20 cap.

No comments:

Post a Comment