We have been following MagicalTimeBean’s Escape Goat when it was first released on Xbox Indie Games two years ago. Since then it has made it through Steam’s Greenlight system and is now available to buy on Steam. I think it is about time we review it.
Escape Goat is set in a prison in which you must escape from while rescuing other goat prisoners. The prison is split over several areas and each have five rooms which you must complete to rescue a goat. Each area has a general theme such as ice, fire and industrial, the style of hazards follow them.
The game is part puzzle and part platform game. The first area introduces you to the game with simple platform style gameplay and brings in new elements such as switches and a new sidekick which is a mouse. The mouse can not be directly controlled by yourself, but it can be used and recalled at any time, otherwise it will simply automatically follow the wall and/or ceiling until it dies. The mouse can be used to reach otherwise unobtainable areas such as through small gaps or high platforms, or simply as a distraction for the enemies to fire upon.
The combination of using your character and the mouse brings in some great puzzle ideas and the game does a great job of bringing it together. For example one level may require your mouse to press a switch at the right time while you travel across a moving block. Fairly accurate timing is required to get everything in sync, so you can be staring at the screen for a few minutes working everything out.
The rooms are never so hard that you will bash your keyboard or throw your controller out of the window as you die for the millionth time. You will of course die as you work out the puzzles and the best way to attempt them, but generally there won’t be any real rage inducing puzzles until after you complete the game. When you work out the puzzle for the room, it gives you the satisfaction and that ‘just one more room’ incentive and before you know it you have completed the level.
The game can be completed in around four hours which is fair value for money as it is £4 on Steam. There is some replayability in that puzzles can be solved in alternative ways, there are a good number of achievements that require you to complete a level a certain way. These are quite challenging and will keep you busy for a while. There is also a level editor to create your own levels, it looks basic but it is functional enough to create a challenging series of rooms for a level.
Graphically the game looks very retro style but polished. I grew up on 8-bit games and I think it suits the platform genre very well. The music and sound effects work well with the game, not too repetitive which is important as you will be staring at the screen for a long time working out puzzles. I played the game with a controller and it handles very well. The developers do recommend using a controller, but the keyboard controls work just fine.
While the game is over a little too soon, it does offer a lot of enjoyment as you guide and rescue the goats through the prison to their escape. It is perfect for an evenings worth of gaming and we definitely recommend you give it a go! You can find out more about the game as well as a demo at http://www.playescapegoat.com/, and purchase it via Steam here.
Some great use and mixes of puzzle and platform genres. A bit short to complete the game but the journey is great fun.
Nice retro style graphics that suit the platform/puzzle style of the game.
A nice soundtrack which doesn't get repetitive, sound effects are done well.