Posted: August 31, 2013
alright let's get one thing straight. this game is hardcore. it's hard, you're going to die. it's a real life video game. I'm getting all sqeamy thinking about it. you probably think cave story is the superchild of old and new school gaming, and boy you're right, but pid is on the same level. if you ask me, in most aspects, pid overcomes cave story. what has pid got?
pid gots art. it gots the prettiest dang art you ever did see. I saw the game in all lowercase, I saw my brother play. "dude let me try," I says, and I never want to try other people's playthroughs. me and kurt were dinking around, I didn't even go anywhere, and I knew I was going to buy this game. that's an understatement because I bought it immediately. it caught me right there. questionably, many of you indiekins may be caught just looking at (or listening to) pid. it's enrapturing. the cell-shading is too much, the world is just melty, the characters are brilliant and unique. yes, even the story is the whole shebang, letting you be an underage meddler in intergalactic affairs, and learning some things about yourself too. gog I'm just spealing. even the soundtrack is good mate and that's all it takes for me to have some fun. sad but true, I'm an easy man to please.
so we're in a kidshaped, danksturous, unnerving sci-fi world with feeling and sounds like babies gurgling compliments about how great you are at everything. and guess what? the game itself is actually amazingly good. we're talking about a dark souls marriage of everything going right. this is everything that mattered in games before meeting everything that matters now. but we can't just stop there. you see, pid has to go above and beyond just being a good game. it becomes purely one of a kind with its platforming mechanic. some of you might be reminded of the (mediocre) bionic commando in how a mechanic is so excellently integrated into the game that it feels like it's improving on an age old formula (I'd rather think of ristar). except of course the gravity portal kurt can throw ain't in anything else you going to play. completely refined design and mechanics that are also completely new?
but wait, there's more! like any great game, pid shines because of what you're doing. each level incorporates what you've done before, but always puts it in a completely new setting and circumstance. enemies and obstacles are changing if not rearranging and there's never a boring moment. you might be scaling heights with careful portals, needing to sneak by enemies with limited tools, uncovering lost ruins, or rocketing high into the sky over vast city expanse. the game incorporates challenging and interesting bosses as well, a definite lost art. the last boss is borderline SNK levels of epic. the game is totally cohesive and ultimately varied, letting the game stand with the best.
hey, not so fast! didn't think the game could get better? on top of being nigh perfect, it also presents engaging puzzles. yeah, I know. how can it do all of that without bungling anything? I don't freakin know. the puzzles might be zelda-tier, but any more than that and I think they'd break the pacing. there are some full-fledged puzzle rooms that remind myself of the final level in ristar, but in no way does this make the game lean torwards a puzzle-platformer. it's hair splitting action with some stop-and-thunk moments, real comparable to the aforementioned zelda in how fluidly it's played out
the way consumables work is an absolute blemish on an otherwise perfect game. postively they can be viewed as get-out-of-jail free cards. and they do work out that way, allowing for quick solutions to obstacles and enemies besides whatever was intended. when the game requires a consumable, they simply give it to you, irritating a player that was saving the items. I'd much rather them give me an item then have them expect me to play perfectly, but because holding space is limited, it can feel punishing. this is overall a minor complaint in the face of the rest of the game's grandeur
realize that this game has a STEEP learning curve. you ain't going to pick up and play. not only is it as challenging as games of yesteryear, but it expects you to be more than competant with a gameplay mechanic that was dreamed up for this game. it's not going to be pretty. but if you stick with it it'll be more than just organic, it'll be perfection.