[EGD] Shedding Some Light

Review by windchimera734 on Saturday, August 23rd 2014
Click to play Dark

Dark is a game created by epicosauruss

A review of Dark, by epicosauruss.


Hello and welcome to the shadowy depths of the PPG making world...nah we’re just gonna review a game...called Dark. So again, I am reviewing an EGD 8 game and fortunately for me, this one’s a physics game :D. The maker epicosauruss is a Main Site Moderator and Reviewer, and also Dark is his first featured game, congratz :3! I sort of ‘semi-know’ the member, we don’t talk much but he’s labelled as ‘alright’ in my book. His game-making style is interesting and I only really pay much attention to his PPGs. I want to mention more in-depth what I mean by ‘interesting’, so I will move onto the next headline.

*Initial Expectations*

I don’t want to sound full of myself, but the Dark demo made by epicosauruss earlier in the year reminded me of my style of PPGs, with the thumbnail and all. However something that I have never used is usually found a lot in his PPGs and that is textures. To be honest I forget the option is there when I make a game, but playing one that uses them always reminds me of the feature’s existence. Now I could go on about ‘my’ games, can we do that…? No, fine then let’s roll on.

*Analysis and Evaluation*

Welcome to Dark folks. Well, technically you start in a light field of y’know, light; contradictory right? Well things change quickly. The game starts with an intro, but what’s happening? I see light then boom! The sky turns night and all of a sudden the universe is dark; well surely there’s some explanation… An explosion! No no, explosions don’t do that, and so I turn to the description for some reasonable explanation and oh God! (Please excuse my blasphemy) So a five minute explosion causes the world to collapse in on itself and the player comes across a castle, but then the floor falls and “you float for a few seconds”, finally you realise that you need to find an escape route (now I’m just simplifying the description, no joke). Talk about bizarre, but anyway before I continue bashing the game’s plot I have a lot of things to evaluate and hopefully for all you readers, I may have some gameplay included in this review. ;)

Now when I mentioned I liked epicosauruss’s style of design... (Wait, I didn’t mention that at all you say? I just talked about how they reminded me of m- stop right there conscience, I’m writing the review!)... So, basically I not only like the style of this game, but I want to mention that I like the variety of interactive concepts present in the level environments. Level 2 -- the first playable level, wasn’t just your average ‘reach the goal’ kind of level. No, epicosauruss went the extra mile to deliver a few (although gimmicky) toys to play with. Personally I think they could have been executed more excitingly with a bit more detail, but at least the concept is there.

I want to mention now that some of the traps were quite 'clunky', for example on the first playable level (level 2) those ball shots that fire deal a penalty upon contact, which is reasonable and not too challenging, however if you get hit by one returning to the start, then you tend to get knocked into the spikes, which by that time you have lost. The breaking mechanic was the fault there, since having switched to sensor would not have knocked the player.

Epicosauruss does a good job of alternating the levels of Dark. The ‘floating’ control scheme stays roughly the same throughout, so you at least feel like you’re progressing, instead of playing a bunch of minigames. The level designs are actually alright and with the textures, I definitely feel alone down there -- or at least I’m the only good guy for a few miles, everything else is out to get me :(. Level 2’s elevator mechanism along with level 5’s colour ball puzzle are quite unique, and they are examples of what I like to see in a game -- something fresh and exciting. One of the levels that I did not approve of was the first boss battle; it looked quite cheap compared to the scenery, which I have already admitted that I approve of, but the boss did not match the standards of detail if that makes sense? Next to that, I found it annoying as hell (literally I felt like I was face to face with the devil) to be brutally honest, and the walkthrough provided made me feel like I was just not a good boss gamer. Nonetheless, the first boss was just not that significant, and for the difficulty it just should have been kept to the end, or maybe removed all together so the game levels feel balanced (solving puzzles and just working your way up to defeat the final boss and save the world would have been cool). Speaking of which, why does the player have to fight the same boss twice? Correct me if I’m wrong but I could have sworn I just blew up this blob, doing it again with more spawning hazards for the trophy was more of a pain than actually ending the atmosphere right.

Level 6’s field of vision mechanic was definitely not original, but combined with the scenery and the atmosphere, it works well and it works well (first for fitting in; second for being reliable ;). So from what you have read, the plot is confused and would have been better without, however apart from the first boss level and a few snags here and there, Dark is an enjoyable game and I did really appreciate the alternate concepts (a lot better than what my PPGs do). Moving on now to the points that matter and overall describe the game: the pros and cons!

*Pros and cons*

- Some fun level mechanics

- Simple floating controls

- Nice result of visuals with the textures

- “Clunky” traps

- Disappointing sensation after the 2-part boss battle

- “Confused” plot


Story/Plot: __/_____

Concepts/Execution: ___/_____

Aesthetics/Scenery: ___/_____

Placements: ___/_____

Fun/Replay Value: ___/_____

*Final Comment*

Dark is not one of the finer PPGs out there, but playing it reveals a little hope that individuals are always determined to try something new, which is fantastic. This game has a few tricky corners and jagged edges, but the effort was recognisable, especially considering that this game had a deadline to meet.

Thanks for reading. ~ windchimera734/Shiftry