Not Quite Golden State

Review by moolatycoon on Monday, June 11th 2018
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Click to play Space Warrior

Space Warrior is a game created by swedenplatformge

Its been a disgusting amount of time since a review has been posted (no, I don't count the blatant abuse of power textlabel put up as a review) so I figured it was probably my turn to step back into the limelight to review a game considering its been about a year. On my hunt I scavenged through many a platformer, looking for something I could beat and have enough material to talk about. This process opened my eyes to how rusty I've become at game playing - that is until I happened to read a thread on the forums in which Sweden was desperate for a review on one of his more recent releases leading up to EGD. It seems today (might) be his lucky day, which just goes to show that it pays to be on the forums sometimes because you never know if someone might snatch up something you made for some attention.



*Disclaimer* I did beat this game, I just wasn't signed in.


I've known Sweden since he was a younger member, and I've watched his creative style grow. I believe that I did a rather scathing review of one of his older games, so I think its only fitting that I return to his collection at least once before I call it quits on this site. While not a particularly explosive game creator, Sweden has made a bit of a reputation for himself for creating good looking set pieces with fast paced gameplay. These are the expectations I set for myself before entering the game, so, how far has Sweden come since I last reviewed him?


If it is any one thing that Sweden has truly begun to master, its his decoration style. I get a lot of satisfaction out of seeing people really develop their style in making games, and Sweden's whole collection of games really tell a story about his careful growth in the arts and crafts department. The entire game looks very pretty, but I have to give the third level in particular some props for being particular stunning. Sweden's limited use of graphics is very appropriate (while still being an integral part of the scenery) and really helps showcase the different tile types with their respective backgrounds that he blended to create the appealing look of the game. That being said, I would have liked him to go a little more out, and certain sections of the game are rather bare bones where I feel like he could have flexed his creativity a bit more.


Its no secret that Sweden is a fan of the Sonic games. Sweden indicated in the description that he was inspired to create a bit of a blend between Sonic and the Metroid series, but I picked up on that two levels in before I even noticed the description. There are a handful of "on rails" segments in the game where the player rides around on gears sailing through the air and bouncing around. In these sections Sweden does a good job of emulating good flow, as they seem like natural sections of the game that serve as a brief change of pace before resuming normal play. These sections were some of the more entertaining parts of the game, but by the end I was felt wanting more done with the mechanic. I felt like Sweden could have used his developments with creating these segments in order to create some more captivating sequences - perhaps he could have propped up one of the game's four 'boss battles', which were particularly weak. He did try to mix it up occasionally with the speedy sections, and I did get the Sonic vibe he was trying to convey, I just think that there is more he could have explored.


The Metroid inspired portion of the game featured the player navigating their way through a basic maze like structure filled with enemies and traps. One thing I liked about how this game was built, was that there wasn't really any one appropriate way to go about completing each level. This freedom of exploration is where I think Sweden drew Metroid inspiration from, and I think it was a welcome separation in gameplay from the standard linear platformer. Despite the praise I'm giving the multi path exploration, I feel like the level designs were particularly bland. There were no real enticing traps or puzzles, and the enemy placements were horribly predictable. On top of that, power ups were littered meaninglessly across the landscape, hidden under burst tiles that explode as soon as you walk up to them. The reward for exploration was a little diminished as you could pretty much find the same power ups across all of your paths and they were not challenging to acquire in the slightest. Sweden wanted to keep the game easy but kind of overshot a little too much here. These segments are just really lackluster and while the encouragement for exploration is appreciated, Sweden stifles himself a bit here. Beyond that, the game is a little too short for its own good. I understand that Sweden wants to keep his game relatively short, but by limiting the number of level types he also limits the amount of decorative styles he can showcase, which is his greatest asset. Creating meaningful, wholesome gameplay is something that Sweden still needs to work on. As a positive note, the levels themselves look well polished, and the actual layout of each level is well crafted, but there is a severe shortage of actual content.


Despite these shortcomings I can appreciate Sweden's goal to make an easy game that everyone can beat - I would just have a little more faith in the players and maybe at least increase the difficulty a little more as the game progresses. There is a certain satisfaction from completing an even mildly challenging game, and there should be some sort of sigh of relief at the end of the game that signifies accomplishment. I did not get this feeling from this game, and I think this is something that can be easily rectified. I like an easier adventure Sweden, just not too easy.


Ratings:


Presentation: ____/_____
 
Creativity: ___/_____
 
Enemies & Traps: __/_____
 
Level Design: ___.5/_____
 
(Re)-Playability: ____/_____
 
Gameplay: __.5/_____
 

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-=Decent=-


I think Sweden is a blossoming game creator that would be an asset on any aesthetics team for a collab. That being said he still needs to find some inspiration on his gameplay style. I wish you the best of luck in this upcoming EGD, and hopefully you've improved a bit since you released this game in 2017.

 
 


Space Warrior Reviewed by moolatycoon on Monday, June 11th 2018. Not Quite Golden State - A game review written by moolatycoon for the game 'Space Warrior' by swedenplatformge. Rating: 2