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52 of 54 people found the following review helpful
on May 1, 2011
If you're like me, you might be one of the few people who don't use Xbox Live. Gasp! That's right, I'm a hardcore gamer, and I don't use Xbox Live. Not because I don't like it, it's just I've never much cared for online gaming, and prefer single player.So I wouldn't get much use out of the service. However, a bad side to this is I am missing out of some great downloadable games, but fortunately, Microsoft has thrown me and others like me a bone, and included three fantastic Live games on one disc at a great price. I just got this disc four days ago and have been having a blast with these games. I'll go over each one to give you an idea of how they play, and why this collection is worth the money.

Limbo: For me, the star of the show. Limbo is unlike anyhing else out there right now. This is a full blown sensory experience. From the graphics, to the sounds, and the gameplay, everything is top notch, extremely polished, totally absorbing, and an absolute joy to play. I can find nothing wrong with this game. So what is Limbo? Well, it's haters describe it as a simple 2-D style puzzle platformer with an interesting art style. And to tell you the truth, they're right. The platforming is great, but you won't need fast reflexes to get through it. The puzzles are challenging but never hair pulling hard. But the haters are missing the point. This game was never designed to test your gaming skills, it was created to absorb you in it's world. Everything was masterfully designed to keep you engaged. Sure the puzzles aren't too hard, but they are challenging enough to make you stop and think about what to do. Sure the platforming isn't hard, but you still have to be careful and time your jumps just right.

The graphics are simply spectacular. Everything is in black and white, no color anywhere. It's very striking, and creepy. Looking at screenshots is a good idea to see what the game looks like, but seeing it in motion is the way to go, trust me. There is a lot of animation, whether it is the boy you play as, other characters you run into, water, machinary, dirt and rocks crumbling down a hill, or the very big, very scary spider you encounter. The animations make this dead looking world come alive. The boy is a black silhouette, with bright white eyes. Sometimes you'll be in a completely dark area and only have his eyes to see where he is.

The sounds are just as good as the graphics. There isn't any actual music, just ambient music, most of the time you'll hear sounds in the environment. The sounds of flys buzzing around a dead animal carcass hanging from a tree, the loud crash of electrical sparks from a large hotel sign you have to cross,the sound of giant gears turning, everything sounds great, and dangerous.

As far as story goes, it is very minimal. It's one of those games, like Braid, where the interpretation is left up to the gamer. All you know is you are a boy who has awoke in a forest, and has to find his sister. After you beat the game, go on some forums and read people's theories on the story, there are some good ones.

The game is played 2-D style, and you run through the levels jumping, climbing, solving puzzles, and watching your little boy get demolished. Yes, the developers did not shy away from the violence in this game, even though you are playing as a young child. He will get beheaded, impaled, drowned, electrocuted, burned, crushed, amputated, and cut in half complete with intestines hanging out. The realistic physics of the game make the deaths even more gruesome. Seeing his head cut off, and roll down a hill while his lifless body collapses is disturbing, and that is one of the tamer deaths.

The game isn't very long, I beat it on my first playthrough in just under three hours. I think the length is perfect though, and the amazing thing is the puzzles never repeat throughout the game. Also, there is not loading in the game at all. From the very beginning, until the credits roll, you will not see a loading screen. The game is like one big level, with ever changing environments. You'll never know when you hit a checkpoint, except that when you die, you will not restart far. I can't recommend this game highly enough, it is an eerie, wonderful, disturbing, never frustrating, and an overall engaging experience.

Splosion Man: Splosion Man is a 2-D style platformer, with 3-D graphics. This game contains some masterful platforming throughout fifty levels, and if you are a fan of the genre, you will not be disappointed. The game can be tough, but it gives lots of checkpoints so when yo die, you will not have to start back far. Theres not too much to say about this game except it is aweseom, has some colorful cartoony graphics, and is very fun to play. Splosion Man himself is a humorous, and you can tell he is having a little too much fun. He's constantly making various sounds as he tries to escape the big science lab where he was created. His idle animatins are funny too. Instead of jumping, you splode. You can splode three times, and after that Splosion man will cool off and you have to reignite him by either staying on the floor for about a second, or sliding down a wall. You have to be careful when he is cooled down, because he can't jump, er I mean splode, and he can be killed in one hit. What's really funny is how he kills his enemies, who are mainly the scientist working at the lab. When you splode on them, they will explode into meat. I don't mean body parts, I'm talking about steaks, hams, and various other meats you find in the meat dept. at a grocery store. You can even blow off their heads, or arms, and they'll bleed meat. It is hilarious. As I said earlier, if you love 2-D style platformers, there is no reason you won't like this. It has some fantastic, challenging platforming that will leave you satisfied when you get through a tough section. Oh the boss fights are fun too, especially the last one. That one was just great.

Trials HD: The final game in this collection. Trials is a stunt, racing, platforming game where you use a dirt bike to get through the levels. You don't race other riders, but against the clock to get the best time you can get. You can take as long as you want in a level though, so don't worry about a time limit. The game is heavy on physics, and can be very hard for newcomers because if you don't hit a landing just right, or if your back tire catches the wrong part of the ground, or other object, and your front tire hasn't touched the ground yet, you will wreck. It starts off easy enough, but will eventually ramp up in difficulty. You have four difficulty categories. Easy, Medium, Hard, and Extreme. Each one has their own set of levels. And believe me, the hard and extreme sections are not lying. Where as I could get mostly gold, and some silver in Easy and Medium, in hard I mostly got bronze, and I could only pass the first level in Extreme. However, don't let my talk of difficulty scare you away. This game is great and very addicting. When you get a bronze in a tough level, then you do it again and get a silver, than do it again and get the gold, it is very satisfying. In fact, the game is actually very fair. It doesn't throw tons of crap at you to knock you down, it just presents you with the level and leave it up to you as to how you get through it. It is tempting to try to speed through the obstacles, but I have found slow and steady wins the day. In addition to the main levels, there is also a collection of fun mini games called skill games. These vary from one where you have to break as many bones in your body as you can, staying on top of a rolling metal bar, and launching yourself off of your bike and see how far you can go, among others.

The graphics are well done with some great lighting effects, and the sound is good too. The game plays music, but it's more in the background, most of the time you'll just hear the sound of your dirtbike, and your character who will make various sounds as he flies through the levels, and gets slammed around a lot.

Well there you have it folks. Hopefully I was able to give you enough descriptions of the three games to give you an idea of how they play. If you're looking for something a little different to play, pick this collection up. I feel I've gotten more than my money's worth, and have been having a lot of fun with them. I hope you do too, and thanks for reading my review.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Since i couldn't find a single directory for limbo, ill create my review under this heading. I have not played the other two games in this pack yet, so this one is just for the game limbo.

Let me start off by saying i have played quite a few downloadable XBL and PSN games, some are engagning, but yet still lack alot of substance to be a great game.

Limbo is a game some people will shortly be referring to as not just a great game but a true accomplishment. And it is. The story of this grim, gorgeous puzzle platformer is one of the most addicting, satisfying and yet oh so rewarding games ive ever had the experience to play. This game is simply a work of art. To be more precise, there is no color, absolutely none. The eery yet disturbing monochromatic style of black and white visuals, or shades of grey is what sets it apart from other games but it really fits a game like limbo. The design and starkly minimalist visual style create a short but indelible experience that deserves to appear before a lot of eyes.

In the simplest terms, Limbo is a side-scrolling action game featuring a little boy looking for his sister in the big dark forest. Beyond the menus, the game itself uses no words (written or spoken) to communicate any sort of story. It doesn't even have real music, just a sublimely rendered ambient soundscape. And it doesn't need any of that stuff. You wake up in the woods, and off you go into an increasingly weird, oppressive, sinister dream world. Your sole occupation is to run left to right and try to avoid all the myriad ways this awful wilderness is trying to kill you, and the game focuses all of its efforts on enabling that single objective.

You won't manage to avoid most of those dangers the first time, because so much of Limbo's action centers on brutally immediate, unforgiving environmental hazards. A blade might come swinging out of nowhere and slice you in half, or a gigantic spider could impale you on a wickedly sharp leg almost before you realize it's there. There's really never a moment when you're not in danger of meeting some grisly end or other, and most of those ends you will not see coming. Note however that the timing and triggers in each scenario are the same every time, so getting through the game requires a lot of trial and error, dying to some unforeseen menace two, three, four times before you work out exactly what you need to do and how fast you need to do it to keep yourself alive and continue on.

Though this game can be seen as short and for the price of $15 dollars some people may not consider it. But trust me on this. There is not a game out there that will give you this much satisfaction of just knowing how to master each element of this game. One of the trophies requires you to get through the entire game in one sitting with 5 or less deaths. I will bet your first play through you will probably die some where around 50 times. So getting this trophy require patience, perseverance and dedication. But its so satisfying, knowing that you 100% limbo, cause the game has a challenge that not only tests your reflexes, and puzzle solving skills but your physical state of mind as well. Make no mistake this game is a mind bender. I often took some time away to actually carefully take notes on each scenario in the game, so when i got to that certain part, i knew for a fact that i had the confidence to get through the game. This is not just an average run of the mill platformer, don't think it is. Try not to get to frustrated, each puzzle provides you with careful planning and precision to make it through this game and trying to figure out each puzzle on your own is what gives you that degree and sense of accomplishment.

The game steadily introduces new environmental mechanics like water, gravity, and magnetism through the end of the game, so you never feel like you're doing the exact same thing twice. Every puzzle is keyed to the unique environment it's taking place in, almost like an adventure game. It's evident one or more people put a ton of thought into every single thing you do in this game.

In case it's not clear already, Limbo is a really hard game, but not immpossible probably too hard for casual players that are used to just finishing games quit and fast. But the extreme difficulty is bearable because everything in the game behaves in a very measured, deliberate way, especially the boy himself. He runs, jumps, climbs, and moves objects at a steady and predictable rate that feels really natural when you control him. That makes it easy to gauge timing and distance for your jumps and other moves. And everything in the game obeys a fairly realistic physics model that gives the gameplay a weird sort of tactile feel. Also, there's a checkpoint about every five feet, so you can load up any chapter you want in the game and retry each puzzle as much as you see fit, Death is no burden here, just a means to further exploring each obstacle. Taken purely by volume this isn't a long game, but you'll feel like you've gotten plenty out of it by the time you've worked out every puzzle and survived every challenge.

The game is a joy to behold in every aspect.

Limbo has a quality that's hard to articulate. It so expertly realizes both its internal gameplay logic and its prevailing aesthetic that it almost creates a sort of reverie as you play, fully removing you from your physical environment and plopping you into this cold, mesmerizing other land. Though you'll find it's a tough place to survive, it might also be one you're in no hurry to leave behind. I believe every gamer out there should at least try this title, it deserves every bit of attention.

Also for PS3 users that want a little extra challenge, there is an exclusive level in the game that the xbox version does not have. "gold trophy" It will test your ability to think quickly as well as using your senses to determine where your at, in this nightmarish level.

This game is in every sense of the word a "masterpiece". One of the most challenging and rewarding experience, ive had the privileged to play. Once i 100% this game, i couldn't help my self but boast to all my friends that i accomplished something great.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on August 18, 2011
Limbo is one of the most satisfying games I have played in the puzzle or platform genre in a long time. The graphics are beautifully simple, the sound is chilling, and the game play and physics are appropriate for the environment. As with most games I love to play it seems too short. For the money and experience of it, no stars lost for that. I didn't get the 2 other games but would consider those a bonus and would buy Limbo all over again by itself.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on March 21, 2012
Most gamists have strong opinions when it comes to Limbo. Or should anyway, there's miles of subtext to traverse here, but even if thinking and reflecting isn't really your bag- Limbo is a unique and inspired debut any way you look at it. But lets get the 'givens' out of the way before delving further.

Limbo is a 2D "trial and death" puzzle platformer rendered in black and white. I'll elaborate on this later. You are provided no context for anything you experience in the game, so when you wake up alone as a small boy in a forest at game-start, the strange art style and ambient industrial soundscape instantly and persistently unnerve you, coalescing into a vague, menacing ever-presence. I was entranced from the instant the title screen appeared to the ending credits, my real life now seeming schmaltzy in contrast.

If you followed the title you'll know that PS users were finally treated to it a freaking' year later than the Box- but better a year late to the party than not show up at all.. isn't that a saying? Well it holds true here in any case. I have to say, considering I might have been deprived such a moving experience in attempts to boost Microsoft console sales, (console exclusives drive sales for consoles, Limbo could have been XBOX exclusive) I am mildly disturbed.

As mentioned earlier, Limbo is a trial and death game. This discription was coined by dev PlayDead and describes the gameplay brilliantly, as it's core challenge is finding the only survivable way through the puzzles and *Spoiler Alert* there are hundreds of wrong ways through, which will culminate as a death.

Be forewarned, you will likely have difficulty with the first several puzzles as the logic employed by the developers is suitably alien, and this is nothing to get riled over. Just use a light touch and try to read your surroundings, many times you'll find the solution hidden in plainsight- just experiment a bit and learn from deaths, and you'll be Limboing in no time. Bam! It should be noted, employing these principles is a much more natural experience than reading about them, so don't let my sub-par journistry concern you, you'll do fine.

Limbo is not a perfect game, to wit- the pacing is screwy. Puzzles don't seamlessly ascend in difficulty and ingenuity a la Portal 2, and the breathless Super Meat Boy-esque (saw jumpings abound!) final third of the game feels out of place and uninspired given the dark meditative puzzles of the beginning portion, which has you using dead bodies to disarm traps, using said traps to rip spiders legs off one by one, etc. I would have loved to see the logical conclusion of these puzzles carried throughout a larger portion of the game, and Playdead themselves admit there is an imbalance, which they attribute to time constraints.

Considering such a widely observed flaw harms the experience in such a minor way is a testament to how frickin' good the game is. But screw opining, this game transcends menial reviews and all the diverging interpretations of the game the internet can conjure. Gaming has had me on the edge of my seat for a little too long. Limbo, to me, has become the metronome for solemn introspection, to sit back, think, and be fully invested in the game is a miraculous and unique achievement. Do yourself a solid and experience this game.
Score: 92/100
[...]
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on March 5, 2013
Verified Purchase
The game is pretty fun. I only needed one game but it came with three. The game even included two codes one for a 160 points and the other one is for a two day trial of gold membership. The gold member ship works just perfectly fine, but the code for the points does not even work.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on July 30, 2014
Verified Purchase
Great three-pack for platform gamers. Limbo is a must have in anybodies collection, simply stunning, could play it over and over and never get tired of the Noir style, and difficult challenges it presents. The other two are just bonus games, get this because it has Limbo in it, you won't be disappointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 3, 2014
Verified Purchase
Perfect shape was as it said. Really fun games. Got it for trials but the oyher two were a nice suprise.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 23, 2013
Verified Purchase
3 XBLA games in one. Limbo is a must play, Trials is very fun, and Splosion Man is a great co-op game. All of the games included are quality games and very fun to play.
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on February 22, 2015
Verified Purchase
Limbo is the big star here, with it's interesting puzzles. Trials is fun at first, but gets old fast. I like to call it the Evel Knievel game, since you crash your motorcycle so often while doing stunts. 'Splosion Man is a platformer, and I really don't care for them, so my opinion of the game would be too jaded to add. It is cute for awhile, though.
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on July 14, 2014
Limbo is by far the best game of the three...the only reason I bought this...
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