I Made It. You Can Stop Bugging Me Now.
The game I am reviewing today is Paradoxical by mrdragon. Because he is a long time friend of mine I try to make it a point to play all his games. I used to make it a point to beat all of his games but they've become too plentiful and too difficult to keep that up. I did however beat this game. I promised him that I would review this game so here we go.
I will start off by saying that this a fairly short game designed to confuse, annoy, and irritate the player. The gist of the game is simple: Get to the end. Just keep following the path. The crystal is at the end. Of course there's an obstacle or two in your way. You find yourself under fire just as soon as you click "start mission". React quickly and cleverly and you won't come to much damage. A cool head will make this game much easier. Mrdragon did a good job placing mortars in the beginning. I love how he set them up so you could actually use them to your advantage if you are smart enough. (Apparently, I wasn't smart enough. I always just blew up the mortars before they could blow me up, which is my usual policy for dealing with mortars.)
This game has two real puzzles. The first involves a a good size patch of ice, two reversers, and an orange switch in between them. If you step on the switch then it's essentially game over. Walls will appear blocking you in for good. At this point I bet you are wondering, "Where did those walls come from? Shouldn't they have started off closed? How were they opened?" Those walls, along with another wall were opened by a convoy that was off doing it's own thing. A signature trick of mrdragon's design is using convoy's to open and close walls for you, whether you want them to or not. This time the convoy is only opening walls. Anyway, this first puzzle is delightfully annoying. If you don't have perfect precision then soon you will have to hit the refresh button. The second puzzle is far less treacherous and can easily be defeated by shooting through a certain wall. It is positioned right before the crystal and is your final challenge. Without going to a lot of detail, this puzzle is designed to send you back to the beginning of the game. This is really just an annoyance more than anything assuming you've already destroyed all the enemies. I'm not even sure if I can call it a puzzle, more like a slightly puzzling obstacle. All you really need to get past it is a couple of bombs. Just blow up what's in your way and take your prize. That philosophy can actually be used throughout this game, since most obstacles are simply strategically placed enemies.
It's worth noting here that there are no items in this game. For this particular game I like that choice. Adding any extra health would've made it too easy, as would adding any extra ammo. Items just don't have a place in some games and fortunately this is one such game. I commend mrdragon for recognizing that.
This game was clearly designed to challenge, perturb, and infuriate the player. I'd say it succeeded in that aspect. I felt all those emotion while playing through. I also felt unsatisfied. I thought the game ended just a bit too soon. I'm not going to hold it against mrdragon for ending the game when he did, I'm just going to suggest that perhaps he make a sequel. My real problem with this game is that the hazards and puzzles are too easily defeated, whether it is by tossing a few bombs, or shooting through a wall, mrdragon didn't do a good job of making the player get past his tricks and traps in only the way he wanted you to. Eliminate that problem and you have a very good game. For now, I can only call this game pretty good.
*Final Score*: 18/25
*I gave mrdragon credit for the wise decision not to add any items.