Wednesday, 17 May 2017

First Look PSN #8

Alien Spidy by Enigma / Kalypso Media (2013) - PlayStation Network (PSN)

Spiders aren't anything new to the games world - I've reviewed one of my favourite examples at this very blog in fact - but I'm still surprised they don't feature in more. They do after all possess some unique abilities which are ideal for puzzley platform games, and that's exactly what this multi-format release from a few years back is. The featured arachnid is apparently an alien who has crash-landed on earth (as revealed in a few nice cut-scenes) but neither the slightly vague story nor Spidy's other-wordly origins really affect the gameplay which mostly involves skillful use of aforementioned talents. The stages are standard 2D side-scrolling affairs and it's your job simply to get Spidy to the end of each one which is mostly achieved by swinging around on webs.

Limited exploration of some areas is possible and there are orbs to collect for points but attention is most keenly focused on avoiding the many dangers that fill the stages, most of which will cause instant loss of a life. These include scary bugs but also stuff on the ground such as sharp brambles, forcing you to keep swinging from the ceilings or helpfully-positioned anchor-points such as flowers. The graphics are a mixed bag, with cute sprites and lovely backgrounds combined with a rather dull black for most of the foregrounds, but the music is pretty good and the physics-based action is good fun to start with. The trouble is, it gets very tricky as well as quite samey much quicker than I'd have liked. Possibly worth sticking with but I'm not sure how long for...

RKS Score: 3/5