I'm All Out Of Love, I'm So Lost Without You.

Review by lumberjay on Saturday, December 15th 2012
Click to play Lost

Lost is a game created by flippenout

[Self-issued challenge: Review without making reference to the television show] One thing that I never understood about the PPG creator is it’s devolution into being used for sparkly platform games. I understand that it is not the norm, but it does happen frequently, as can be seen with several games, even some of mine. I have nothing against platformers in the PPG, as long as they have a nice feel, while maintaining a sense of challenge. Lost, a relatively recent game on the featured list seems to take the mold of said platformer genre, but how does it hold up?

Allow me to get one thing of my chest; Lost is a gruelingly frustrating game. I really wanted to like this game, but I found the game play to be rather irritating. The character movement, for me, seemed like the player walked on a waxed ice floor, with feet made of butter. This got annoying by the desert level, where you were expected to move along crude, pointed surfaces. This of course is forgivable, but the truly game-breaking element of Lost was that much of the game relied on double jumping, an element which is more inconsistent than a former US presidential candidate’s policies. Imagine me for a moment (a relatively calm and collected fellow), practically spazzing out on my W and up arrow keys in an attempt to make it up a simple platform. It might not seem so bad, but when you consider that timing was also required in these already aneurysm-inducing sequences, it is a very large straw on this old camel’s back.

Even more aggravating than the character controls and things expected from the player, the world around you adds to the pile of inconveniences. In one instance from my play through, I was expected to double jump from a horizontal sliding block to another block, while an enemy moved at a different pace, hovering over it. This might not have been a problem if, at the same time, there weren’t giant blobs getting shot at you at an even more inconsistent pace. Pickiness is something I’m not proud of having, but considering this had resulted in taking up ten minutes of my time before actually completing the level in which this occurred, I feel as if I should be disgruntled, and perhaps, a bit picky. What surprised me even more was that I heard this level originally had only one life, which would have increased difficulty by an infinite amount. Gladly, this was fixed, so I have to give flippenout a pat on the back for showing an eagerness to improve.

“But Lumberjay,” as you may be saying right about now, “this game was meant to have an extreme difficulty curve, so you shouldn’t be so condescending, and embrace it as a great game.” “Humbug,” I would yell, shaking my cane at you, as if you were talking about the merriment of Christmastime. The ever-so subjective term of challenge rears its ugly head at this point. A calm game of Sudoku can be challenging, but so can bashing your skull into a concrete wall in order to get to the other side. Completing one leaves you with a sense of intellectual integrity, while the other gives you a sense of accomplishment, at the cost of every other sense you had. A game’s challenge should not be determined by outdated concepts such as double jumping, but instead by clever level design, and the incorporation of puzzles to aid progression. This being said, the game did try to add puzzles, although I was only aware of one, within the first level. This wasn’t so much of a puzzle as much as it was a mini-game version of “How Steady is Your Hand.” Don’t take that snide comment as a bad thing, as I embraced that as a clever, entertaining way to progress. This, unfortunately, was really the only thing that I witnessed in Lost that separated it from an otherwise stale and frustrating game.

30 minutes in, I decided to give up in the desert level. I figured that my time had already been thrown away, so why should I even bother continuing to finish this quest? Some may question my position in reviewing a game that I hadn’t finished, but I can affirm that a review can be created as long as I know enough on a game. I always am afraid that I might hear the dreaded phrase “it gets better” which I find to be intriguing. If someone stabbed you three times in the abdomen, uttered the phrase “it gets better,” than hands you a lollipop, would you really think it was worth it? That’s what this game felt like to me. Extreme pain, that really would have left me with the reward that was less gratifying than the torment endured.

This game had been featured, and I’m not going to dispute Tookewl and Youngcaliman’s decision on this, as in truth, it was entertaining for a short while. That being said, I found it to be bland, and playing it felt more of a task, rather than an experience. The overall difficulty was too much for me, prompting me to abort after 30 minutes in. If there is anything I can say, don’t take my opinions too seriously. Try the game for yourself and garner your own opinion. I simply judge heavily because I have faith that the creator will find ways to improve in his next game.

[SGCA] ---Actually part of the Island---