Decided to play one of the games in my Steam library I got as part of the Humble Indie Bundle: Snapshot.
First off, this game is addicting. Seriously, honestly addicting. Even in the small amount of time I played it, I had to actually stop myself — and that was only 30 minutes or so.
The central gameplay mechanic is one so drastically simple, I wouldn’t have come up with it: You are a nameless steel-can robot that can take pictures of objects… and cut/paste them from/to reality.
The level design reminded me a lot of Portal: the concept is simple (get from A to B), but the process of getting there? You’ll tear your hair out before you get that “Eureka!” moment.
Technically, this game falls in Steam’s categories as “Casual”. I don’t know if I agree with that — This game is a little more “involved” for a casual game. It would definitely appeal to the average twitch gamer, as it slows things down just enough to be relaxing. It definitely is a little slower than, say, a standard platformer (e.g. Mario) but has a definite pace. You have to keep up with the concepts it places in front of you.
I like this game. Its like Mastermind and Portal and a camera all had sex and this was the result.
On a totally unrelated note, the soundtrack is GORGEOUS.
Even if you manage to find the soundtrack in the game files (as ogg vorbis files) I’d still pay the $5 for the “official” steam DLC. Why? Because its THAT DAMN SOOTHING.
Steam store page ($10USD at time of writing).
So I like SNES games. Its not my fault I like SNES games, they’re just fun to play some times. Other times you want to strangle them (Star Fox, anyone?) But for those awkward moments where all you have is your trusty modded controller (and some spare time).
So, on to the review.
Pocky and and her raccoon friend Rocky are back at it, this time with a plot line! The village has had its princess, Luna, kidnapped, and Pocky is the only one that can save her. On the way she meets such nasty foes as Impy, Bolta and brother Volta, finishing in a spectacular battle with Dynagon.
I’ll sum it up in a phrase: its mind-numbingly hard. For those of us familiar with top-down pseudo-shooters, its great — You get basic power-ups, the combos are fantastic to play through. But the levels are laid out in such a way that unless you know what is coming your way, you may just miss an entire side-room with a some power-up or coinage deposit.
There are some bosses that are just hard. There are also stages which are blisteringly hard. It rapidly digresses to an almost rail-shooter style in several areas, which can make certain obstacles near impossible.
There is one redeeming factor to this: the tutorial is right on par with Mega Man X’s intro stage. It could make even AVGN happy. You’re asked if you want a tutorial and if you say yes, it guides you through each of the core concepts in the game — from moving around (simple) to calling and throwing your partner character (Strangely satisfying once you get the hang of it). Its most redeeming factor is that it gives you a chance to learn each thing you will use — repeatedly — throughout the game.
You aren’t expected to know that R-Trigger summons your partner for tosses and that during segments of the game that X will head-butt you into your partner and “magic” you into them because you read the manual — It teaches you in one of the best possible ways.
I was only able to play it through by having an emulator and rewind/save-states. There are some points you cannot win without having amazing reflexes. Yet, despite the frustration that this game puts out, it is fun. There is no other word to describe it. The plot is well thought-out and guides you through a pretty linear sequence, pulling you in by the nape of your neck and making you thoroughly enjoy finally completing it.
I quite enjoyed it.