The Indie Zone Episode 13
Reviews for the puzzle games Sum Fighter and Ace of Dynamites and the poop’em up Poopocalypse are in this episode of the Indie Zone.
Sum Fighter – 240 :MSPoints: – Marketplace – Review by Kyle S.
I knew as soon as I launched this Indie Game I knew it was something different instantly, unlike anything I’ve played before. While the developer claims similarities to the puzzle game Tetris Attack, it’s a mixture of Tetris and simple math with the goal being to clear lines of blocks from your screen by adding together the number blocks in a sequential order of two, three, four and so on. Sounds like a simple game, where all you have to do is line up a few numbers, right? In order to spice things up the developer MDCopp threw in a few curve-balls, such as the bombs that will clear all of your chosen number block off of the screen as well as player-specific (out of the six high-school characters) special abilities designed to throw your opponent off track in various, creative ways. What will ultimately decide the winner in the battle-grounds of Sum Fighter is whoever cannot clear any more blocks off of the screen before the warning bells on the side of the screen reach the top of the board declaring that person defeated.
While this game has a relatively simple concept, they’ve been able to introduce some unique characters, environments, and more in this puzzle game. With detailed character sheets, beautiful animations, and varied settings for Sum Fighter battles you will not be disappointed with the look and feel of this creative gem. While the overall look of the game isn’t anything too special, for such a simple premise that was never really needed, but the added art elements make a huge difference to your experience with the game, and is a nice added bonus to the already solid puzzle game. And the same could be said about the surprisingly good soundtrack for the game, reminding me of music from the SNES era which goes well for the fighter experience of the title, adding in some very well done fighter tunes. While the soundtrack isn’t incredibly varied, I found myself enjoying listening to what was offered a lot, as some solid work was put in to each hand-crafted track and is all around excellent.
Sum Fighter may not be the perfect game for everyone, but for the crowd of hardcore puzzle fans you will instantly fall in love with the quirky charm of the game, and its six main characters. For a humble three dollars, or 240 :MSPoints: you’re going to find yourself deep in to the brick-breaking action of Sum Fighter for hours on end as I can promise you the game-play isn’t as easy as you’d think. All in all, for a solid little puzzle game, decent graphics and an above-average soundtrack you can’t go wrong picking up this title, provided you have experience with the puzzle genre.
Poopocalypse – 80 :MSPoints: – Marketplace
A pigeon is on the rampage and armed with the one thing pigeons have as a weapon he/she goes on a quest to defecate on all the pristine landmarks around the world. It’s Poopocalypse!
You control the said pigeon as he flies across the landscape. The game is a twin stick shooter in style, up and down on the left analogue stick controls the angle of flight and the right analogue stick controls the angle of the poop. The landmarks take some flight time to reach, so in between those you have the opportunity to poop on civilians and other scenery such as vehicles and BBQ’s. Successfully hitting these targets increases your score and multiplier, while you have unlimited poop to drop, it does start to run a bit… erm… thin after continuous use, so letting rip short bursts for maximum impact is the best tactic. Trophies are awarded for various goals such as hitting multiple targets quickly which add to the fun of finding them out.
Graphically the game fares well, a red and black silhouette theme is used during gameplay which looks the part. Targets are highlighted with a white cross to easily identify them. The scenery is not exactly varied but it works and random obstacles in the air such as hot air balloons and aircraft look good as well as providing an additional challenge. The audio kicks off with a nice metal theme in the menus but in game things are less pumped up. Sound effects are decent but I wouldn’t have minded hearing some more to liven things up.
Poopocalypse costs 80 :MSPoints: which is fair value for money. It is not a game you can play for hours on end and is best suited for those quick 10 minute time fillers while waiting for something else. You may find however that after playing the trial you have seen everything the game has to offer, nothing really changes throughout the game. Some more modes such as a time attack would have increased the lifespan and fun factor.
Ace of Dynamites – 80 :MSPoints: – Marketplace
Ace of Dynamites is a puzzle game set in the kingdom of the Round Happy Faces. The kingdom’s gems have been stolen by the evil Death’s Heads tribe and it is up to you to recover them.
The game is played in a top down view with you controlling your character, he or she must find the three gems on the level and make it to the exit. There is not much in terms of variety of obstacles, only two enemies to cause problems, static and ‘chasing’ Death Heads and to stop them there are explosives and switches which freezes them for a short period of time. The level designs are varied between puzzle and maze like design. Some require pushing blocks or explosives to certain spaces to continue the level while others are basic maze like designs that offer little challenge. The game offers some challenge on higher difficulties, but on the easiest you can breeze through it in as little as 45 minutes.
My main issue with the game is the control system. Moving your character moves him pixel by pixel, the game would have been better suited to a grid like movement system as the collision detection is too over responsive. While pushing blocks you can easily move it a pixel over where you wanted it , this results in your character not being able to push it from another direction. Often the only option after it to restart the level, very frustrating!
If the controls were improved I would have said it is worth a punt at 80 :MSPoints:, but the controls do make the game a chore and not a joy to play. One to avoid unfortunately.