If You Wish To Survive, You Must Die And Revive

Review by youngcaliman on Wednesday, August 22nd 2012
Click to play Survivor

Survivor is a game created by deathleaf

Opening Quote

"I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed."

Michael Jordan


For someone who has death written all over him, Deathleaf certainly brings quite a bit of life into his games. It is apparent that he has skill with the Platform and Shooter creator, but prior to his PPG Survivor, he had not shown too much capability with the PPG creator. I was interested to play this game when it was released because of this. There is no reason for me to go into my preliminary thoughts with this game, as you can easily develop your own. However, because of the high standards he has placed upon himself because of his skill in other creators, I expect this game to be above par.

Game Play

When it comes to the PPG creator, or any creator for that matter, a decent game play experience is certainly required. I am pleased to announce that, for the most part, Survivor did deliver stellar game play. This game uses a concept that is not completely unique. I have played other games that use a similar idea, such as The Globoid Factory by ckmbud. The game requires the player to move a small red circle as the character that can not move itself, thus forcing you to use other objects to guide it to the final destination. I suppose I did not have to mention that, since you could just click the link and find that out yourself, but just in case you have not played the game and you are too lazy to go make that observation, there you have it. Deathleaf adopted an unoriginal concept, and with his own bare hands, made it original. He forces you to think outside the box, more so than any other game with a similar idea behind it.

Level Designs

Each level of this game was crafted carefully, as one would expect since Deathleaf used a delicate little concept. The first level (starting with level 2) did introduce the idea nicely, even though it was a bit generic. The levels that followed introduced new ideas, new themes, and most importantly, new techniques that the player must use in order to advance further into the game. I enjoyed the simplicity that Deathleaf incorporated into each level, as each stage is not incredible lengthy, nor difficult if the player is willing to put in that minuscule extra effort. Every level is designed as trial and error based, meaning that the player will most likely have to press the replay button over and over in order to, well, survive. I can safely say that Deathleaf does an outstanding job plucking the frustration out of our bodies with this creation. However, the level designs are not unfair, since each level has a certain code, if you will, that one must be able to crack. Some levels were not perfectly designed though, in my opinion. The level that is displayed in the beautiful thumbnail with the ship may look intriguing, but the game play was sub-par and did not compare to the other levels. Also, the last level has a similar scenario, as the scenery itself was brilliant, and it does feature a nice chain reaction (spoiler), but the game play overall could have been much better, especially for a closing level. However, overall, the game was designed beautifully, and as a result he was able to revive an old and frankly worn out concept back to life.


As I have observed with other games that incorporate an almost identical concept to Survivor, the scenery normally lacks. This may not hinder the game play experience drastically, since one could get away with this by implementing quality game play. But Deathleaf did do something that no other game similar to it has done before, based on my knowledge of course. He has created perhaps not the most stunning scenery, but he did portray some nice pieces of art to go along with each level that really made the game play shine. Furthermore, he inserted visuals that matched the themes he used. This makes it more appealing for the player's eyes when they first start playing the game. In fact, the scenery itself invites the player into each map, and provides enough appeal to keep the player's mind from wandering off into a state most of us call boredom. This is, of course, if you have just the slightest bit of interest in puzzle solving, as this requires more critical thinking and technical adaption than anything. The last level was beautifully designed regarding aesthetics (The best visual experience for me), as it resembled a cave like environment. The aesthetics definitely do not compare to some that I've seen in other PPG's overall, but the scenery works well with the game, and more importantly, does not overpower the idea behind this piece of work.


Possibly the most important aspect of a puzzle game are the puzzles themselves, believe it or not. If I have to be perfectly honest, sometimes this game did not feel like a puzzle game. Occasionally, I found myself spending more time trying to execute each sequence rather than actually figuring it out. So, in a sense, this is a puzzle game, but it's also a game that requires coordination and learning from your mistakes as well. If you had to place all the puzzles from this game into a hat, and picked one out randomly, chances are you would be satisfied with the puzzle you chose. This game goes beyond what I would call standard puzzles. It brings in elements that I have not seen before, and the puzzles show an almost perfect blend of complexity and simplicity. In fact, each level is basically one large puzzle on its own because once you start the level, you get little to no breaks prior to its completion. At times, I often thought to myself "Oh, that was actually pretty neat". It may sound a bit cheesy, but you know you are playing a decent puzzle game when you have thoughts like this. Since each level brought forth a new theme, I expected the puzzles to match the themes, and overall, they did. Perhaps some of the puzzles could have been improved, or even expanded on, but nonetheless, the puzzles still impressed me, and this is all I could ask for honestly.


For some people, the main enemy may actually be the retry button. I myself abused this button, and I suppose I should apologize for my neglectful behavior towards it, but with a game like this, it is only expected. Whether you go out of bounds or just run out of balls to use, you'll constantly have to replay the level until you master the strategy or technique that is required. Again, since each level introduces a completely different theme from the previous levels, the enemies and hazards should always match what the level portrays, and again, for the most part, this is the case with Survivor. The third level did not impress me too much with the enemies. I found that spikes make the level look a little bland and, quite frankly, a tad lazy in a way. However, I can not be disappointment with the placement of the hazards and enemies. They were all placed in order to encourage the puzzles to break out of their shell. Deathleaf did a decent job with this department, I must say.

Replay Appeal

This game requires patience. There's no way to sugar coat it. Although, coating it with sugar may help keep players from leaving, especially those like myself who have an undeniable sweet tooth. Personally, I found the later levels more appealing, as the graphics began to really shine in the volcanic, ship, and cave levels. However, the first few levels almost looked a bit unprofessional to me in terms of design. In a sense, this could be smart, as these levels are more simple than the others, which allows players to get a sense of accomplishment early on in their gaming experience. The flip side to this is that it may also draw players away since the replay effect may not kick in early in the game. I personally found myself addicted for quite some time, even though this type of game is generally not my cup of tea. I would expect more players to have the same replay effect that I did, if not a slightly less urge to keep chipping away at what the game has to offer. Although most people would not survive in this game, it does deliver that sense of wanting to win, for a lack of a better term. Well, I suppose survive would be a better term. Just insert the word "survive" where the word "win" is. It makes more sense.


Read above. Don't be lazy.


Game Play: 7.5/10

Scenery: 7/10

Level Designs: 8/10

Enemies/Hazards: 7.5/10

Puzzles: 8.5/10

Creativity: 7.5/10

Replay Appeal: 8/10

Overall: 7.7/10

Thoughts For the Future

Deathleaf, overall I really enjoyed this game. It was not perfect, but I found it entertaining an you did a great job delivering entertaining game play using an idea I thought was dead. If you decide to make a sequel, which I advise you do not unless you can deliver better game play than you did in this game, I personally suggest doing a futuristic based game. I'm sure you could create better graphics for this, as well as ideas that would go even more outside the box than this game did. This could also allow you to create a more dynamic storyline.

Thank you all for reading my review.


Survivor Reviewed by youngcaliman on Wednesday, August 22nd 2012. If You Wish To Survive, You Must Die And Revive - A game review written by youngcaliman for the game 'Survivor' by deathleaf. Rating: 3.5