Friday, April 29, 2011
My interest for Sword and Sworcery started just by seeing the screenshots. It's a game that's quite unique in several ways, and hence actually becomes somewhat difficult to review. The experience is designed from the ground up for someone who really has very little knowledge about the game's story, mechanics, characters and ... heck, even style. I was rather surprised by some of the tone of the narration - even though everything from the writing style to the mechanics corresponds quite nicely to create a rich gaming experience.
Without getting to specific, the impressive thing about Sword and Sworcery is its ability to play up old school gameplay from the days of King's Quest while rolling in modern concepts like social media. It is also a game which is neatly, I guess "metasmart" for lack of a better term. It's probably the least cliche use of the player being a "god's finger" that I can think of, but also neatly explains why you can point a direction for the hero and rustle bushes as well.
I wish I had access to the iPad version, but the iPhone version seems suited well enough for the smaller screen real estate. It is an absolute must to play this game with headphones (or really good speakers, I suppose). Not only is the music part of the rich experience the Superbrothers are weaving together, but there are few spots which use audio cues in critical moments as well.
I'm in the third session, and as an aside I enjoy the fact that the game actually insists on a bit of an intermission (it's part of that "metasmart" portion of the design). I've been using S&S as something of a night time read - and it feels in some way like an interactive story right for bedtime that you can simply put a bookmark in and pick up later.
My only complaint so far is that a few of the moments where they clearly want you to explore as oppose to explain get somewhat confusing, and I actually found some of the mechanics of the first boss battle a bit annoying (like holding down the shield to heal, which seems like a silly warmup exercise at best). But these are really small things compared to the game as a whole - which I highly recommend.