Thursday, December 12, 2013

No Princess Here [Hero in the Ocean Review]

          You're a knight in shining armor travelling through fantastic lands to rescue the princess from some devious adversary. Right? Sorry folks - this time we're going under the ocean. Our Hero In The Ocean by Lampogolovii is on a mission to rescue some divers in some strange place in the sea in your submarine.There are fifteen levels and each one introduces a new concept as you fly around looking for stars, divers and secret areas in your adventure.

          Hero In The Ocean features simple, yet engaging gameplay. The only keys you'll ever use is WASD and/or Arrow Keys, a great decision to let both be usable. Throughout the levels, you float around and try to find keys to unlock doors, three stars, secret areas which are basically places that appear to be walls but turn out to be normal terrain, and ultimately, the diver you have to rescue. I have no idea why the divers stand still in one spot when they have infinite air to breathe (after all, we have infinite time). As you move, bubbles will trail out and you'll find there is a very slight slide, but the developer has made this perfectly fine due to no damage dealt from walls. The only way you can die is from a laser; which can be annoying when you have to restart from the very beginning of the level. 

Who's brilliant idea was to put lasers in this place?
          The developer has clearly put a lot of effort into making sure levels are workable and the fact that new concepts are always introduced every single level. Levels were intuitive and required some logic to complete, which I liked, but overall the game wasn't very difficult at all. I checked levels to test if you could get stuck from the rocks but it seems like you can't, at least not easily. The set of fifteen levels was a great choice of game length as well - not too short, and not too long.

Showcasing some of the concepts in the levels of the game. Man...who put this stuff here anyway? Some evil scientist?
          Along with this, the graphics and the music are very nicely done and really set the mood and atmosphere. Fall Slowly by Heather Fenoughty is a dramatic and exciting piece which captures the adventurous, powerful theme of the game. The detail paid to the art in the game is amazing. The way the bubbles trail off leading to a slight slide, the way the background ripples where you move. More game-play wise with the graphics, the background is easily distinguished with physical obstacles and the yellow contrasts the dull blue of the background, meaning you never lose your character within the environment. The way the game is set out gives it a timeless feel, like a deep sea dive to explore something, and in a way, the divers here give that.

          There are some English mistakes, such as "You've found secret area" but they aren't bad and it doesn't make a lot of difference. For me, secret areas was mostly sticking to walls, although I realized that it's more like checking the places that exist for the sake of it. There's a mute button, although the driving feel of the piano and the strings really is amazing. Small touches like how the greenery waves very slightly in the water shows that the developer put his heart and soul into this. Towards the end, I did start to lose interest but the game ended soon after and it was an enjoyable experience.

          It's a 4/5 from me, I like the game and it's a great execution but after a while it can get somewhat repetitive and slow. The music and graphics is breathtaking though.I would definitely recommend this to a friend for a casual play-through.
The end of the review
Thanks for reading

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