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Fear Less! Fear Less!

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

It took me eleven deaths and a record of 1693 metres until I made it... I actually screamed out loud.
But onwards to the actual review. I was positivly surprised how long it was possible to survive with minimum upgrades. Many other games of this kind ramp up the diffilcutly so quickly that it takes several minutes of grinding to actually make a distance, whereas here it was mostly dependant on your skill.
On the first hundred metres or so.
After that there were obstachles that could not in any way be beaten if you did not have the sufficient jump ugrade, and I personally think that it should at least be theoretically possible to... well in this case not BEAT the game on the first try, but at least go as far as your skill lets you.
The way the enemies had to be beaten was something I don´t believe to have seen in a game like this before and was at some points pretty challenging. I had a bit of a problem with the way obstacles worked. For once with the triple jump, it could happen that there was no sensible place to land once you made your first jump but maybe that´s just bad timing from me. Another point is that whilst getting hit will make you lose control for a second and make you go flashy, it doesn´t actually give you a moment of invincibility. Very often I found myself hitting an obstacle and then immideatly hitting the one after it as well, since I couldn´t dodge after being hit.
The grande point here is of course the ending, I presume that nobody who has not either finished the game, or is the author will read my comment to this point so I´ll allow myself to talk about it:
Everything the game gives to you, from skills, over information up to compliments, prefferably in the form being told to have defeated something powerful, having saved something important ect. Is important to the player because he earned it.
If I am trying very hard towards getting a specific reward, in this case the ending scene then I want the reward to be a direct consequence of my skills.
Winning by dying on purpose is just about the opposite of that.

innomin responds:

Thanks for the in-depth review! The Fighting Back medal was the major reason we couldn't let you play the whole game without upgrading - I often get over 150m on my first play, and you need double that to unlock the medal. The game should generate 'fair' levels almost always, particularly when fully upgraded with triple jump. And yes, short invulnerability has been requested, but the distance highscores over 9000 make me think that hp recovery overcompensates for the multi trip-ups that can happen at higher distances.

The ending is a little strange, I know, but you did mention that you screamed out loud. And that is exactly the point! You have to master all of your abilities and defeat every medal challenge to win, but more importantly, you have to 'fear less'. When Death becomes a less of a fear and more of a frustrating nuisance, the recurring nightmares end and the girl can sleep. And from a more practical 'game' perspective, it also allows highscores to reach infinite distance and flawless time. =)

...WHAT, 9000!? (sorry, I had to do it...)

Vast Vast

Rated 1 / 5 stars

I am honestly a bit unsure how to judge this. As a project you did it is great. You put effort in it. made everything work smoothly, apparently created a nice soundtrack by yourself. Nice animations, eccelent rewarding sounds, comparable to proffesional video games. Now here is my problem: What is this? No question it demonstrates your skill in making... something quite nicely but neither as a game, nor as art does this show any value. The "Game" part of this was only basic interaction, there was no challenge and no way to change the outcome. Now for an art game this is usually acceptable to do, when all you want to achieve is to draw more attention to the storyline, immersing the player. However the content of this game is the basic running around, delivering people stuff. Now I get that your message is, that you should help people with their problems, but since these ones are obviously just sitting around, waiting for someone to do the basic chore they won´t the storyline itself is the same as in games that are based on agility or intelligence, using the storyline only as an excuse to let the player have fun. So the Gameplay is "designed" to support the storyline and the storyline is "designed" to support the gamplay.
As much as a conclusion like this hurts to make but: you did good, what you wanted to do but completly failed to set your goal correctly.

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Rated 2 / 5 stars

I will give it to you straight: The two stars are for : "it's note a joke but a seriously meant game" and "you have created a working game in a very limited timespan"
Other than that every aspect of this game frustrates me: The uniform jumping height and weidth is making precise navigation near impossible. Combined with a bad response a cruel hitframe and obstacles that approach quickly and give very limited information on the ideal jumppath the difficulty is beyond of what I could imagine anyone could enjoy. Timing the obstacles is impossible unless you recognize them by the first few centimetres that pop on your screen i.e. how far you go is only by a too small part determined by your reflexes and instead by grinding repitition and learning the patterns. Flipping the screen upside down after a handful of obstacles completly disturbs the recognition you have gained for the form of the obstacles meaning that after you have finally learned the patterns enough to survive about thirty seconds you will immideatly have to learn the same amount of patterns to survive the 30 seconds after combined with the additional confusion of having the jump direction inverted making the timespan required to survive significantly longer than you spend with being annoyed about your death improfitable. I conclude
- "Lazy" controls
- Unresponsiveness
- Insane difficulty
- Pattern grinding instead of skill building
- Unforgiving learning curve
--> 2/5

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TimeLine Runner TimeLine Runner

Rated 2 / 5 stars

This game has a truly interesting conept. I love the minimal graphics and getting to know the physics which were really fun. Unfortunately this game has 2 Elements that make it more boring and interesting in my eyes. 1. There are unbeatable obstacles. It is obvious that the obstacles appear in a semi-random way the problem here is that if you arrive at certain obstacles with an unfortunate momentum i.e. are merely running or are still in jump from the last obstacle the movement of it will not allow you to pass it, no matter how good you are and how precise. There simply isn´t any room that you COULD fit trough. 2. The game different to others of this kind is only loosely based on reflexes on skill and rather on learning every obstacle in a specific area until you know the CORRECT way to respond to it. For example if I between 1880 and 1220 encounter an row of arrows in the air I know to do a mini jump, wait for the hurdle in the middle, jump over it and slide until I am out from under the arrows. If you however encounter this for the first time you´ll have to take wild guess about your path of flight including arrows and other things that you CAN`T EVEN SEE YET. The only way to pass obstacles like this is failing at them repeaditly until you found out the proper way to approach them for EACH OBSTACLE INDIVIDUALLY.
Hence my suggestions: 1.Reduce the number of moving obstacles and make sure to eradicate any momentum which makes them impossible to master (You might take many attempts to find the dead stops if you already know how to bypass them but for those who don´t know yet those are EXTREMLY frustrating)
2. Do not make a single pack of obstacles larger than the visible screen and if you do make sure to be very obvious about when the player roughly should jump.

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Santa's "Clause" Santa's "Clause"

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

I have to say that I Feel a little unsure about this. What it really lacks is a way to gain more time. Games that are arcade style should only end if you messed up, therefore making it possible to acclaim thousands of points. The difference between max height and current height isn´t normally that big either and giving you a Tetris style game I thought I was supposed to make them fit tightly together instead of raising them as high as I could. I felt a little left when trying to decide wether I should stack the Presents as HIGH as I could or try to get as many presents in the stable area as I could. Giving you both the usual tetris blocks and insanely shaped gifts confused me. With the tetris shapes I could work them perfectly together but with those oddley shaped bears I would soon find myself with an indisriminate tower of stuff. Trying to stack only one or two rows up the towers would collapse extremly quickly. It has however something addictive to it. Like a real life arcade game it feels like there has to be a trick and it gives you the feeling that you almost made it (even though it is void of an actual target)

Santa Rockstar 5 Santa Rockstar 5

Rated 3 / 5 stars

Really Awkward handling, honestly unless I played with 5 notes most of the times where I would from instict HIT a key there was no key to be hit. Some solos were abrigred into hitting the same note 6 times consecutively but as soon as the third song began the dificullty ramped up INSANELY. There were other times when I would miss a note because I felt it to be off the beat. I presonally rely less on watching when the keys come in and more on the combination of how many, and which color they have (with the corresponding key) and hit the next key I know is supposed to come up with the music. Without the music matching the keys I might as well be blind.

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Scylla Starfighter Scylla Starfighter

Rated 4 / 5 stars

This game is one of those cases in which i notice that they in some kind outdo most of the flash games I have played before this rating is only meant for you to show that there are things you can improve on: The plot which is demonstrated by the dialouges in-game is at some points much longer than it should be (yes Ragnaquians you want me dead but please one first and last warning is more than enough... in fact i don´t even get why they are so talkactive commenting on their and your every action) and in other instances it falls horribly short ( Yeah I am going to blow up the entire universe you know the "AI-figures out death to all is somehow the best strategy story" so I am not going to explain myself to you and just do it already). I have played games I would call easy but on this one besides for the last level my thoughts were mostly " Oh come on! At least put up some resistance" Most ships could be destroyed by a few shots and the most endurant enemys were the rocks. Now it is a common strategy to make the player feel powerful by giving him a weapon able to crush any enemy quickly but if you then tell me that I can´t destroy rocks, killing the enemy ships feels like hosing down carboard. For the story itself I want to give you the hint: many players won´t care for the story the least bit if you don´t MAKE them care. An example: If you tell your player he is going to attack the enemy´s home PLANET you put a hell of a fight against him if you don´t he just won´t care for anything the enemy has to say or any warning. If you would fulfill warnings the player would listen to what you say much more carefully searching for hints for the oncoming battle and is thus more involved in the game. If you place the fight on the very planet you want the player to defend - again- make him care! I shot down just as many buildings as enemy ships just because they are in my way and there is no penalty for doing so. If you penaltize or reward behaviour based on the plot you make the player care for the plot. Last bit: I am not sure if there is a top limit on how you can shoot but in most fly&shoot games i ask the simple question: Is there at any time a possible situation in which you would want NOT to fire? if your answer is no then please just add autofire as having to press the same button over and over again during the ENTIRE game is only destracting you from the game itself.

How said above: This kind of rant is something I only do with games which tell me that there is a brilliant author capable of far more than flash games on free to play sites.
Sorry for the bad english and greetings from germany

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Josepho responds:

Many thanks for the feedback, autofire is now enabled

Splatters Splatters

Rated 4 / 5 stars

It was pretty good overall. Your selection of enemeis was in most cases quite good. The explodings gave me some fun in the beginning and the ones shooting rapidly to all sides kept me on my toes since they required full attention leading to one never getting bored. Like others said: It would be great if you could watch and/or save the picture of your battlefield in the end which is something i kind of expected due to this game´s nature

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Traitor Traitor

Rated 4 / 5 stars

First off: I loved it, the story was great, there were some really high adrenaline scenes the dialouges were witty ect. ect. ect. However I think there are some things that need to be hinted out -->NOT BECAUSE THE GAME IS BAD BUT BECAUSE I THINK YOU CAN DO MUCH BETTER<--

1. The Upgrades were very different considering if they actually helped: For example The projectile speed is useless compared to damage upgrades since obviously the number of situations in which high bullet speed is needed (in fact only when fighting against a very small target) is significantly outnumbered by the situations in which more damage is needed (about any given situation) But still this difference between the uses is not sufficently shown in the prices of these upgrades.

2.I know it is propably just experimental but having the upgrades shattered everywhere across the map is making rational and logical upgrading (what do i need first, how should i spend my money) rather difficult as you never exactly know where the upgrades are, what kind of upgrades you can afford ect. And pushes you into buying anything that is offered to you given you have the needed money. Although it would take out some of the realism i would rather reccomend you to stick with the old fashioned Menu-upgrades On that account i would like to note that i liked the idea of getting upgrades for mission quite well and also not always getting exactly what was promised in beforehand of the mission as i think this to make the game more realistic without throwing the balance off.

3. Normally this kind of 2d shooters are "bullet hells" given a large number of bullets a big screen and an agile character. Here although the screen was - in comparison to the ships- quite small and the hitbox of your ship quite big. The Consequences:
- There are quite few bullets on screen at a given time creating the impression that everyone on the screen is pressed together like having a gunfight inside of an elevator and you don´t feel like your full attention is actually required for dodging
- You have little time destroying the enemys as they pass relatively fast and since most of them shoot straight forward making you simply avoid most of your enemys ending up to kill almost nothing in many mission which makes you feel extra stupid when your mission was to kill everyone to begin with.
- Those previous two things make you feel somehow clumsy as the number of bullets is decreased in relation to other "bullet hell" games but you still get hit
- Also there were at times big problems with those objects that would block the entire way. Of course you can survive them when you have enough defense/firepower but generally i dislike situations in which the upgrades are neccecerially required in order to pass the mission.
This was a problem obviously arising from the mixture of rpg which relys on the protagonists strenght (if you can´t defeat it lvl up) and bullet hell which relys on the players strenght (learn the patterns and develop a strategy).

I repeat: I do not mean to tell you that your game is bad... it is not! And i liked it very much. Sorry for the bad English.
Greetings from Germany

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Average Joe Average Joe

Rated 2.5 / 5 stars

An overall "Meh" I see that you were propably inspired (like many others said) by "this is the only level" which i do in fact find good. However there were some ... I would call them "flaws" but it wouldn´t actually express the gravity of the errors. First of all the "Average" seems to be quite random. He is obviously the bravest man in the entire land so calling him "average" doesn´t make sense in the context of the plot. The only reason why you might call him average is , that he does not have any obvious super powers but - hey that´s something that applies to many videogame characters. the graphics seem quite minimalistic. The hints you are given - especially when in context to "this is the only level" are very very very obvious. The difficulty was almost like a joke but if you mean to adress a younger audience O.K..