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Recent reviews by Wolf Revo

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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
3.7 hrs on record
I originally played The Room Two on mobile a couple of years ago. The PC version updates the textures, but keeps everything else the same. This includes the control scheme, so you will end up doing a lot more clicking and dragging than you ever wanted to. Other than that, my original review holds up:

If The Room was a good proof-of-concept for what a premium game should look like on mobile, The Room Two took that concept and perfected it. Nearly everything about it improves on the foundation that the original laid down. In a lot of ways it reminds me of my impressions of the first two Assassin’s Creed games. We had never seen anything quite like the original, and I finished thinking it was a pretty good game; then the second comes along and suddenly I realized that it was the game the original should have been all along.

As in its predecessor, The Room Two tasks you with solving physical puzzles. The original was limited to opening various types of safes, but The Room Two takes it several steps farther. Most of the rooms you find yourself in contain several different objects to interact with. Each provides pieces that are required to solve different parts of the others. That addition alone makes the game five times more interesting. It also means that most chapters are longer than the chapters in the original. There are also several more chapters, so all told it takes about twice as long to complete.

The visuals are also vastly improved. Not only are the textures all high enough resolution to not be distracting, they added little touches like motion blur when zooming from one part of a room to another and little particle effects. I thought the particle effects were a little much, but they never got in the way of being able to solve the puzzles.

Speaking of puzzles, I thought they were better designed this time around. There were several times in The Room where I got so stuck that I had to read all of the hints to understand what was expected of me. It may have been the result of already being in the correct mindset, but I only ever had to read the first clue this time around. There were times when I struggled for a while, but otherwise it would have been too easy.

I mentioned the creepy vibe I felt in the original. In The Room Two they took that vague sense of unease and did the best they could to turn it into a horror game. There is only so much they could do given that the player only has the ability to look around a room (don’t expect any chase scenes). But they did an excellent job creating creepy environments and using jump scares to keep me on my toes. There were even a few times I thought I saw something out of the corner of my eye, but when I looked nothing was there.
Posted January 17, 2017.
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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
3.5 hrs on record
I originally played The Room on mobile a couple of years ago. The PC version updates the textures, but keeps everything else the same. This includes the control scheme, so you will end up doing a lot more clicking and dragging than you ever wanted to. Other than that, my original review holds up:

Out of all the mobile games I have played so far, The Room is by far the one that feels the most like a premium experience. If there is a AAA category on mobile, this is a prime example of how to do it right. Ironically an independent studio made it, which just shows you how nontraditional this space is.

From the title you might expect The Room to be a game where you are stuck in a room that you have to escape from. In fact it turns out to be the opposite. You are in a room with a safe that you have to figure out how to get into. Being a puzzle game, you find everything you need to get in somewhere on the safe itself. The game is divided into chapters: each time you open the container you find another inside that you must open. You start each chapter by inspecting the container to identify the points that you can interact with it. Many of these points will do nothing until you obtain some object (a key, a cog, a crank, etc) from another part of the container. All your interactions are intentionally tactile, making good use of the touch screen.

The puzzles tend to do a good job of walking the fine line between being too hard and too easy. I was concerned at the beginning when it insisted on continuously giving me hints. It soon stopped and I realized that I was sorely unprepared for what I had gotten myself into. Most of the levels were quite enjoyable, giving just enough challenge to result in a satisfying “Aha!” moment. Even when if you get completely stuck, the game gives optional hints. There are usually a set of hints for a particular puzzle. They start general and vague and progress to being so specific that I never had to look online for an answer.

The story is told through a series of notes left by the previous owner of the safe. They had been researching what they call the Null element, and the game soon takes on a creepy old-world mysticism vibe. In a lot of ways it reminds me of Amnesia: the Dark Descent, though of course it is not a horror game. The story tropes, the tactile interactions with the world, and even the visuals all contribute to this feeling. The game was lauded when it came out for its visuals, and they still hold up for the most part. There were a few textures that I would have liked to be higher resolution, and a couple of times I was distracted by jagged edges on objects, but it wasn’t a chronic problem. Also if you get the PC edition this should be less of a problem as they touched up many of the textures.

One of the important things in a mobile game is being able to pick it up for quick sessions and put it down at will. The Room manages this by saving after every action, so you are free to leave and come back as often as you need to. I did not find it difficult to remember what I was in the middle of doing when returning to the game.

If you have a choice of different devices to play on, go with the one with the largest screen. I played on my Nexus 5, and there were a few times I felt cramped and had to lean in close to inspect objects. The game is also quite dark, so you will have a hard time playing anywhere near sunlight.

There are five chapters in the game (four at launch and an epilogue that was added to lead into the sequel). It was not an especially long game (took me a weekend of moderate playtime) but it was not nearly as short as Monument Valley.
Posted January 17, 2017.
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7 people found this review helpful
28.2 hrs on record (3.9 hrs at review time)
I've had Badland on Android since 2014, but finally picked up the PC version in a Humble Bundle. I was hopeful that playing multiplayer on a television with controllers would be better than having everyone crowded around a tablet, and I was right! Below is what I wrote about it back in 2014[medium.com]:

At first glance you might want to call Badland an infinite flyer. But there are enough major differences that I do not think it quite fits. Much like infinite flyers, you have one basic control: touch to fly up, don’t touch to drop down. However, in most infinite flyers touching anything results in death. In Badland there are many things that will kill you, but usually the floor and ceiling are safe. Instead the game is based around set obstacles that you must get past.

There are two main ways to lose. Contact with objects like saws, lasers, or getting squished between two otherwise harmless objects will kill you. Falling behind the camera also results in failure. Usually the camera continues forward at a slow but unstoppable pace. There are exceptions, like during maze sections where the camera will kindly wait for you to complete the puzzle. Failure is not the end of the world like most infinite flyers. Instead the game is riddled with checkpoints, usually placed right before each obstacle or puzzle.

Badland spices things up with power ups found throughout levels. Some make you smaller, some bigger, some bouncy, some sticky, etc. Usually they are strategically placed to help you get past the next obstacle. As with any good puzzle game, Badland takes the limited number of different elements and combines them in new, more challenging ways as the game progresses to keep itself fresh.

I have never played a game with a setting quite like Badland’s. It is a jungle world with pieces of abandoned advanced technology lying about. You see this world as a small creature trying to survive the day in this deadly world. The art style does a great job of presenting this beautiful world. The backgrounds are vividly colored, seemingly handpainted panoramas of huge objects in the distance. The objects in the foreground (as in, everything that you interact with in the game) are almost completely black. You might think that the background would distract from the important objects, but it did not. In fact, I only noticed things in the background if I was in an area with a lull in obstacles. I started to imagine what kinds of events might be happening on this world, what awesome sci-fi adventures were happening that my little fuzzy animal was completely unaware of. I also thought about all the hilarious ways that this little animal’s journey might be inadvertently affecting the world around it.

There is no soundtrack to speak of in Badland. Instead, ambient jungle sounds permeate quietly throughout. Many obstacles make sounds, such as the buzzing of a saw or the sizzle of a laser. Honestly I did not miss the existence of a soundtrack until I looked in my humble library and realized that the game came with no music.

There are 70 levels (not including community-made levels,) divided into different times of day. They of course get progressively more difficult. There are also goals besides simply reaching the end of a level. Throughout many levels you can get power ups that clone the little creature. The more clones that make it to the end, the better. It becomes very difficult to keep them all alive however, because they all obey your command to go up or down at the same time. Each level has three different objectives to complete, such as saving a certain number of creatures or collecting all the power ups in the level. It is the kind of game that I have enjoyed completing, but I doubt I will ever fully beat it.

There is also a hilarious local multiplayer mode where up to four people control different creatures making their way through the same level together. It is competitive, so whoever makes it farthest wins. This multiplayer mode works best on larger screens, and it is the first game that I can think of that makes perfect sense to play on Android TV.
Posted July 4, 2016. Last edited July 4, 2016.
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3 people found this review helpful
13.0 hrs on record (2.9 hrs at review time)
Duet, my favorite mobile game of all time, is now available on PC! And luckily the things that made it so compelling on mobile also work well when sitting at a desk.

The closest game I can compare Duet to is Super Hexagon. They both do everything a mobile game should do: simple controls, easy to pick up and put down quickly, and minimal graphics that still manage to be beautiful. Duet does a few more things to make it worthwhile to continue playing, and because of that I believe it is a better game.

In Duet you control the rotation of two spheres: holding down the right arrow key rotates them clockwise, holding down the left arrow key rotates them counterclockwise. The only task the game gives you is to avoid the white obstacles as they fall from the top of the screen. It is much easier to understand if you see it in action, so be sure to watch the trailer.

Unlike Super Hexagon, which procedurally generates its obstacles from a set of patterns, each level level in Duet is the same each time you play it. If you hit an obstacle, the sphere that hit bursts and splatters on the obstacle. The game then rewinds to the beginning of the level, and you try again. The splatter stays there, reminding you of your past failure. Once you have completed a level there is a brief pause and the next level begins.

The levels are grouped into chapters, each with a title named after a stage of grief. The beginning of each level has a short quote pertaining to the chapter you are in, and it paints a strange story as you play. Each chapter is based around a new type of challenge. They start off simple and then start combining what you learned in past chapters with what you know now. The pace at which they introduce new elements is challenging, but reasonable. I would sometimes hit a level that seemed insurmountable, but determination and perseverance have won out in the end every time.

The game rewards you with achievements for each chapter you complete. More challenging achievements exist for things like completing a chapter without hitting a single obstacle. You can also comprehensively compare how well you have done to how well everyone else in the world (or just your friends) have done. I'm hoping that some of my friends on PC will pick up the game so I can crush them on the leaderboards.

If the story mode were all there was to the game, it would be short. But there is also an epilogue, several challenge levels, an endless mode, and a daily challenge. At time of writing, I have beaten just over half of the static levels in the game. Even after I have mastered all them the endless mode and the daily challenges will keep me coming back for a long time yet.
Posted August 5, 2015.
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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
0.1 hrs on record (0.1 hrs at review time)
Sex education is lacking, so many of us can remember being a kid trying to figure out for ourselves what the whole deal was. This quick little game comes at the subject from a grounded and realistic perspective. And while it might not have anything new to say, it's still important because there aren't many games that talk about this.
Posted March 8, 2015.
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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
0.0 hrs on record
Hilarious addition to Pandora's legends. Shade is totally not crazy, and Captain Scarlett is totally trustworthy.
Posted January 30, 2015.
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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
9.9 hrs on record (4.6 hrs at review time)
Brothers - A Tale of Two Sons has a very good reason for requiring you to use a controller; it is a single player game where you control two characters. The control scheme is very simple on paper: the older brother moves with the left analog stick and interacts with the left trigger, and the younger brother moves with the right analog stick and interacts with the right trigger. In reality it is very easy to get them mixed up, especially when the older brother ends up to the right of the younger brother. Luckily any time there is a puzzle element that requires each brother to be in a particular spot, the younger brother is almost always to the left of the older brother.

The puzzles almost always involve the two brothers working together, and more often than not they utilize each of their unique skill sets. For example older brother can pull heavy levers, and younger brother can slip through narrow bars. The puzzles are usually not very difficult to figure out, and very rarely are they a test of the player's finesse. This means that from a gameplay point of view, Brothers is entirely counting on its unique core concept. Luckily it is a short game (about three hours) so the novelty does not have time to wear off.

The story is another strong point. Everyone in the game speaks a fictional language, which leaves only the character's body language and tone of voice to convey their message. The result is that you usually have a vague idea of what they are saying, but a very clear impression of the emotions they are feeling. The brothers' journey begins when their father falls ill and they have to travel to a presumably magical tree to retrieve an antidote. On the way they encounter many people and creatures both magical and mundane. A lot of time they need help of some sort, and the brothers come to their aid. Some of these are required to progress through the linear game, but others can be found just off the beaten path. It is worth noting that none of the achievements are awarded for progressing through the main story, but none of them are very difficult to get.

The writers attempted a few plot twists, but for the most part I saw them coming a long way away. There were some genuinely sweet moments, and some that took my breath away. My favorite was the hang glider flight, which was delightful. It felt like the cumulation of the wonder found in the world, and the musical crescendo was the most memorable in the game.

I encountered a couple of bugs that involved certain events not triggering properly or the enemy AI failing to react to the brothers properly. Both were solved by restarting the game. The most amusing bug was the fact that half the text in the credits was cut off my first time through. None of these were crippling issues.

Brothers - A Tale of Two Sons takes a unique idea and uses its novelty to great effect. It also does not overstay its welcome, ending before things get stale. Reasonable price: $10.
Posted January 17, 2015.
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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
16.1 hrs on record (2.5 hrs at review time)
I have become a big fan of Telltale's interactive story format, but this is the first time they have made a game in a franchise that I am already invested in. And it makes a world of difference. Even though Game of Thrones tells the story of a relatively minor house that has not appeared directly in the books or television show, I am already well acquainted with other characters and the politics of the world. This gives me a framework from which to base my interactions with these characters. Even if you are new to the series, they do a good job introducing characters with really obvious clues about their true nature. But really, you should read the books up through A Storm of Swords or watch the show up through Season 3. Speaking of which, they have all the same actors voicing their characters from the show.

Now let's talk about the characters they have created specifically for the game. House Forrester seems to have been written very similarly to House Stark. They are from the north, they are honorable, and their members have been flung all over the world. It is obvious why they did this: everyone likes the Starks, and Telltale wants the player to like the people they are playing as. I'm a little disappointed that they couldn't find a better way to do that than to follow an established formula. Much like in the books, there are multiple characters whom the player controls. This is where having the characters flung across the world comes into play. As in the books or the show, there are quite a few characters to keep track of, so I recommend going into the game's codex before you start playing so you aren't totally lost.

While reading A Song of Ice and Fire, I had gotten so used to George RR Martin's tendency to pull the rug out from under the reader that I could predict when bad things or good things would happen. Thankfully the writers at Telltale didn't follow that formula, so I was legitimately surprised a few times throughout the episode.

The art style is gorgeous to behold. I was expecting it to be cel-shaded like their last four games, but instead everything looks as if it could be straight out of an oil painting. Objects in the background become slightly blurred, and characters' faces have a curious texture. The border between foreground and background objects had a strange shimmer where the blurring ended, which was a little distracting. But does it look good in screenshots or what? By far Game of Thrones is the best looking Telltale game to date.

The gameplay has moved farther away from puzzles and action sequences than even The Wolf Among Us. Carefully choosing dialogue options is the only meaningful action the player makes. If you do the wrong thing during one of the few action sequences, it is simply game over. It is quite difficult to fail that way.

I don't remember caring this much about the characters' lives I am affecting, even in The Walking Dead. I was so conflicted during dialogue that I sometimes let the time run out accidentally. If Telltale can keep up this level of quality, Game of Thrones will easily be my favorite game of theirs, and probably my favorite game of 2015. Iron from Ice!
Posted December 18, 2014.
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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
1.7 hrs on record
The puzzles are reminiscent of Portal, but the rest of it couldn't be any different. The writing takes existentialism to a whole new level, and I'm really digging the Judeo-Christian references. The setting is beautiful, with ancient ruins clashing with futuristic test elements. I tried to convince an in-game computer to let me play the full game, but it wouldn't hear of it.

Really this is a demo that you can play before the game comes out, so try it to see if you would be interested in the full game. I for one am hooked!
Posted November 8, 2014. Last edited November 8, 2014.
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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
0.5 hrs on record (0.3 hrs at review time)
It is best if you go into The Plan with no expectations, so I will not say much about it. Keep an open mind and you will enjoy it. It is free and it is short (less than 10 minutes) so you really have no reason not to check it out.
Posted November 7, 2014.
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Showing 1-10 of 45 entries