Most helpful positive review
52 of 54 people found the following review helpful
Lot of Splosion for your buck.
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.