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Monday, November 30, 2009

Game Play: Braid (really wanted to love it...)

When I heard that Braid was making its way to PSN, I was rather excited to see what all the fuss was about. Blow's platformer has become something of an indie darling - and for good reasons being both artistic and financially successful.

I just can't bring myself to keep playing it. Don't get me wrong, it is a very pretty little game with an excellent sound track. The time mechanic is interesting, although not quite as intrinsic as I had originally imagined it would be. The story looks like a great mash-up of old school and new invention, but I didn't really quite get into the "row of books" delivery method. When I first jumped into the game, there seemed to be a lot of that - a good thing tinged with a slight annoyance.

That's not why I can't keep playing it, though. Braid is clearly a well constructed game. It's clearly a good game. I just, as a baseline, hate platformers. And the more old school the gameplay is - the more likely I am to hate them, and for all it's lovely graphics and music and twists to the concept - is pretty darn old school at the core. I had numerous Mario flashbacks.

I can't entirely explain why I've logged several hours of Little Big Planet but can't continue on with Braid, it may in fact be rather subconscious ... but I'm not going to go into a lengthy comparison of the two games to prove what is a completely personal opinion anyway.

However, I would offer that just because Braid has been very well reviewed - I wouldn't assume it is for everyone. If you're iffy about the genre in general, you might hold out for a demo.


Duncan M said...

I recommend that everyone at least try it, get their mind bent by a at least one time-related puzzle and then continue if that type of thing hooks them.

That was the whole hook for me: figuring out how the world worked enough to unravel the puzzles.

Which is why I pretty much haven't played it since, even though I lost my save when my xbox was stolen. I just can't bring myself to repeat puzzles like that too often. There is no challenge if I remember the answer.

Out of curiosity, how far through the game did you get? Did you at least play each of the worlds (except World 1, obviously)?

Josh said...

I didn't actually manage to solve any of the jigsaws, but I made my way through a couple of the worlds. Found the time jumping clouds, the time jumping gate, etc.

The puzzle aspect is decent, but the whole falling and doing things over and over again has just never been appealing to me.