Regardless of the actual fact its usually engaged on the subsequent entry within the everlasting cultural phenomenon that’s Pokémon, Sport Freak occasionally takes the time to cleanse its artistic palette with one thing that does not contain pocket-based monsters. The latest of its facet forays was Giga Wrecker, which smashed its approach onto PC two years in the past, and whereas it is a world away from the top-down beast battling of Sport Freak’s typical fare, this puzzle-platformer has an identical degree of high quality you may immediately admire.
Lastly ported to consoles as Giga Wrecker Alt., this little open-ended 2D side-scroller has some grand concepts in terms of puzzles and the way you work together with the world round you. Every thing centres round one Reika Rekkeiji. Following an invasion by a military of ravenous robots, younger Reika is locked away in a cell and seemingly left for useless. That’s till one other equally younger heroine blasts open her cell and shoots her. Now undoubtedly left for useless, Reika is rescued by the snarky but good Physician Kozuki, who makes use of the know-how of Earth’s new robotic invaders to rebuild our main girl with cybernetic implants.
So sure, it’s totally Mega Man (with a sprinkling of 2D Castlevania), however the precise gameplay itself is extra targeted on puzzle fixing than nails-hard fight. Together with her new metallic limbs, Reika can now smash her approach via large blocks, together with smashing up and smashing right down to entry new areas. Destruction is physics-based, so columns of rock will usually fall relying on how they have been struck, enabling you to create bridges throughout gaps early within the recreation. Nonetheless, it is not nearly creating destruction, however utilizing the outcomes of your harmful talents to unravel conundrums and to help you in fight. By urgent ‘ZR’ or ‘R’ you may ‘recall’ any close by rubble to you to create a sphere of lethal detritus.
The bigger your ball of rubble, the additional it’s going to attain. At first this’ll merely appear to be a fast repair for a scarcity of ranged assaults, however quickly you realise it is superb for turning destructible parts into shapes wanted to unravel a sure environmental puzzle. Want to achieve a excessive platform? How about turning a excessive ledge above you right into a slope by smashing the closest part away? Or bashing a big haphazard block right into a rudimentary sequence of steps? Many of the Giga Wrecker Alt.’s puzzles finally boil right down to ‘attain this level so you may unlock this door’, however the enjoyable of fixing learn how to flip the setting into an answer usually negates the predictable setup.
It is simple to mess up – particularly if you have not obtained the hold of Reika’s highly effective punch and the way greatest to make use of it at sure heights and distances – so most main puzzles include a close-by tachyon level. The electromagnetic waves you utilize to recall rubble can be utilized to create a paradoxical time leap that principally resets the puzzle and restores all beforehand destroyed surroundings. The one caveat is these ‘tachyon bursts’ take away any rubble you have been carrying on the time. It is also very easy to maintain activating these factors as you solely must push up on the analogue persist with activate them. Additionally they reset all enemies, making retries that additional bit tough.
The console port is not only a straight rehash of the PC model, both. Giga Wrecker Alt. comes with over 20 new ranges to discover, a model new ‘Iron Man’ onerous mode for these thirsting for just a little additional problem and a brand new trace system within the type of your floating robotic pal, Dölma. The latter is well essentially the most helpful of the lot. Certain, a number of additional ranges to play via is all the time welcome – particularly for many who performed the unique – however contemplating how obtuse a few of its grander puzzles will be, having Dölma there to help in what a rubble formation ought to appear like when it is completed is a godsend. New gamers will actually admire this new function, whereas extra skilled rubble-rousers will actually get a kick out of getting a better problem mode to beat.
Weirdly, Giga Wrecker Alt.’s weakest parts are its seems. A extra retro anime aesthetic was clearly the intention Sport Freak was going with, however in an period the place related titles have produced visible types as putting as Useless Cells or Celeste, this typically finally ends up like one thing somebody put collectively in Flash. It is environments may look actually charming at instances, particularly throughout sure boss battles, however the dichotomy between the 2 will be very jarring.
When it is not giving the world extra causes to ‘Catch ‘Em All’, Sport Freak continues to ship fascinating and sudden forays into different genres. Very similar to Tembo the Badass Elephant earlier than it, Giga Wrecker Alt. is a unusual left-turn that takes the exploration staples of a 2D Metroidvania and combines it with a destructible setting puzzle system for some artistic and massively rewarding puzzles. Fight is sort of forgettable, however sucker-punching a boss with an enormous ball will be ridiculous enjoyable whenever you pull it off. It is seems won’t be that memorable, nevertheless it’s nonetheless a worthy technique to make a multitude on Change.