kalmis's VVVVVV (PC) review

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  • kalmis has written a total of 101 reviews. The last one was for Lume

Steam got VVVVVV and so should you

Funnily named VVVVVV is a Flash based 8-bit platform game. VVVVVV was released earlier this year for PC. Just this month the game got a Steam release as well, which is looked at here.

Game-play is a odd combination of platform and puzzle. The control schema has only three buttons. Left, right and action. This might sound simple, but trust me it is anything but that. The action button used to reverse gravity. For the character to get past a spiked pit one must hit action to reverse gravity and walk past the pit by walking on the ceiling. This is being just a simple example. Direction where one is heading will in times get very confusing. in a good way. VVVery precise timing and accuracy is also required on latter levels. Moving platforms and bizarre moving hazards are added to make ones life harder even more. And oh boy harder it gets. VVVVVV is one the hardest games around. Even harder than say   N+ or Splosion Man. Luckily there is no death animation and game continues from closest Checkpoint straight away. Checkpoints are placed in each screen, few even in some cases. This still doesn't make the game lot easier.

 Graphics wise this game could be from C64/ Spectrum era. Which for someone who has grown up during those times is just great. The main character is a single colored sprite. The other characters follow the same suit, literally, just having different color. The backgrounds are different patterns that could be from any C64 games, not to mention the familiar coloring scheme. While still maintaining to have a a modern touch. This how 8-bit game in year 2010 should look like. 

 Music is chip-tune type that perfectly fits the game. Some instruments and passages are more modernized. Still having catchy melodies and that Commodore sound that could be from late 90's. The  soundtrack is available for 4$ from composers site which I recommend getting if you are fan of the chip-tune music.

The story in the game follows our protagonist, a star ship captain looking for his 5 crew members. Which is done in map that consists of 400 screens that can be also explored to find 20 hidden trinkets. Other game modes are the time trial and flip mode, where the world is flipped over. Game can be finished in couple of hours, which would be my only complain. Also there aren't Steam achievements which would make one go back to the game. Sure there is multiple endings and to really master some of the levels you will use a good amount of time. Doing Things The Hard Way, just throwing a name out there.

My wife happened to see the stats screen after I had finished the game. Just couple of deaths under 1500. "1500 deaths?, she said." I showed her bit of the game-play where she replied:"How can you play that? I would go crazy!" Sums up nicely, this game is for the patient type.

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