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Friday, December 9, 2011

Good XBLI Games!

Normally I'd be oozing sarcasm, but not this time!

Orbitron: Revolution

The game's archetype is Defender, so it's a shooter where you can go left or right at a whim, defending points of interest or just clearing out waves of enemies, depending on the game type.
Wicked good presentation, but the glows and crap can initially make it hard to distinguish an enemy from a pick-up (which sometimes are very similar in design). You have to learn how to read the screen.

And like the original Defender, I found myself constantly checking the mini-map for enemy locations. You move fast in this game and if you crash into an enemy you die immediately, so you need to cultivate a habit of spamming your guns and strafing the screen while inching forward in order to survive. It's a shame because going fast feels really good in this game. It's hard to resist.

Still, Orbitron is better than most XBLA games, and for XBLI that's like the space program equivalent of going to the Moon, then deciding to forget the Moon and go to Mars, then, "Screw Mars, we're going to Jupiter!"

Escape Goat

You're a goat. You hang out with a mouse. You escape traps. Awesome.

At first glance, this game might look like many others, but don't be fooled! Look closely and see how the goat bunches up his hooves when near a ledge, or the clean, easy-to-read color palette. That's polish. That's what a real game has, and you can bet that the puzzles and controls will be satisfying as well.
Because they are.

MagicalTimeBean is the Valve of XBLI.


Rhythm + RPG = This game
There are no dungeons to run around in, which is fine by me, and there's a lot of playful dialogue which works even when the writing flounders because the voice actors are so damn good. They make it float.

If you can't tell from the embedded tutorial, Sequence has a pretty unique presentation that takes some learning to get a proper grasp of, so while I was having fun during the first hour, it wasn't until later, about two hours in, that I really appreciated the nuances of this game. Managing three different windows, casting the right spells, and keeping up a good defense, it all keeps you very busy and very engaged. At the end of a fight, you'll feel like you've won something.

The music is amazing.

1 comment:

  1. That walkthru of Sequence put me to sleep. The one about a goat looked cool, though.