REVIEW ROUNDUP?

ThatHITBOX Review Roundup’s are built to cover a broad selection of releases. There will likely be no running theme or connective tissue between any of the titles; just two or three games that stood out to us, and therefore might be worth a look. In much the same way as the rest of our review coverage, each title will be given a “Yeah!” or “Nah.”

SKULLY - Any game that evokes Kameo-esque elemental character transformation is automatically going to peak my interest. Skully’s premise is certainly kicking things off on the right foot, with a simple platforming mechanic / collectathon combined with environmental puzzle solving and a smattering of enemy encounters. As the titular heroic ball, there’s a lovely sense of momentum as you traverse each chapter, with a certain degree of precision required to avoid an untimely demise. Where things start getting creaky are when said transformations take place. Combat is extremely hit and miss, with clunky animation and questionable hit detection. Pacing quickly goes out the window, and often times you’ll find yourself getting frustrated by issues that could have easily been avoided.

Oh hey! Look! It’s Kingdom of the Crystal Skully!


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SKULLY, SPITLINGS, & ROCK OF AGES 3: MAKE & BREAK
Roll, jump, and roll some more.      


REVIEW ROUNDUP
By JAY TEE
02/10/20

WORTH IT?

BUT

NAH.  
Skully has a charming premise but the execution
misses the mark.      

The sense of momentum is appreciated, and the voiceover work is over the top fun.  

TARPS?

At the bottom of some of our articles, you’ll see a series of absurd looking images (with equally stupid, in joke laden names). These are the TARP badges, which represent our ‘Totally Accurate Rating Platform’. They allow us to identify specific things, recognise positive or negative aspects of a games design, and generally indulge our consistent silliness with some visual tomfoolery.  

The CLONE WARS badge is for a game with lots of repeated character models.

The DROWSY badge is for a game that sometimes has issues with pacing.


The SET PHASERS TO SHATNER badge is for a game where lower expectations may lead to a good time.  

The DEALBREAKER badge is for a game where one or two crucial mis-steps might be enough to put you off.

The BLEEDING EYES badge is for a game where bump mapping doesn’t happen as often as you might think…

The BANG AVERAGE badge is for a game that is bang average.  

The TGSN badge is for a game that's seemingly held together with Blue Peter's sticky backed plastic.



SPITLINGS - When you cross the visual styling of Sound Scapes with the geometric weirdness of Thomas Was Alone, Spitlings emerges. Previously a Google Stadia exclusive, this quirky puzzle platformer has made the jump to consoles and PC. It’s an extremely simple pitch, that sees you navigate various side scrolling stages, whilst managing and replenishing your supply of projectile phlegm. Online and local multiplayer is an appreciated touch, and is definitely more enjoyable than solo runs. If it’s quick fire, reaction based platforming you’re seeking, Spitlings will definitely scratch that itch. The visuals are crisp, although the keyboard controls felt a tad unwieldy. This would definitely be the kind of title where a controller is the recommended go to.

WORTH IT?

YEAH!  
Spitlings is an unusual but effective experiment that works well in multiplayer.    

TARPS?

At the bottom of some of our articles, you’ll see a series of absurd looking images (with equally stupid, in joke laden names). These are the TARP badges, which represent our ‘Totally Accurate Rating Platform’. They allow us to identify specific things, recognise positive or negative aspects of a games design, and generally indulge our consistent silliness with some visual tomfoolery.  

The DISNEY PIXAR badge is for a game with a unique and / or interesting graphical style.

The BEST WITH FRIENDS badge is earned if a game is significantly more fun playing with people you know, either in campaign or online.

The TROLLOLOL badge is for a game with sudden spikes in difficulty.  

The MAYORAL ELECTION badge is for a game filled with high pressure moments that put your skills to the test.  

The FULL IMPULSE badge is for a game that is short, but still a great experience.

The COUCH MADNESS badge is awarded when a game nails split/same screen gameplay.

The STRAIGHT AND STEADY badge is for a game that comes out the gate in a good state.




They spit stuff which makes it go.


BUT

You might find the learning curve a tad steep, especially when playing solo.   

ROCK OF AGES 3: MAKE & BREAK - It’s so gratifying to see a genuinely bonkers, off the wall series continue to be supported despite its high concept premise. Rock of Ages returns with a mostly iterative sequel here, but that doesn’t stop the good times from rolling on (sorry). It’s as mad cap as ever, with escalating obstacles and challenges continually thrown your way, as you do your level best to smash your way to victory. The same pop up, simplified graphical style remains, and although it largely stays true to the established formula, there is a pervasive sense of fun that permeates the entire game. It’s not particularly long, but at this point, anyone even vaguely familiar with this will have a reasonable idea of what they can expect.

He’s well chuffed to be a boulder.


WORTH IT?

BUT

YEAH!  
Rock of Ages 3: Make & Break is totally silly, and that’s fine with us.      

Don’t expect them to reinvent the wheel.
… Sorry.

TARPS?

At the bottom of some of our articles, you’ll see a series of absurd looking images (with equally stupid, in joke laden names). These are the TARP badges, which represent our ‘Totally Accurate Rating Platform’. They allow us to identify specific things, recognise positive or negative aspects of a games design, and generally indulge our consistent silliness with some visual tomfoolery.  

The IT’S A TARP! badge is awarded when a game offers a real challenge.

The PRINCE OF PERSIA POT badge is for a game with glitches too hilarious to be angry about.

The CHALLENGE ME BRAIN PUZZLES! badge is for a game that is tricky, but rewarding, to master.  

The TUVOK’S EARS badge is for a game with gameplay mechanics that are clearly communicated to the player.

The INTER ACTABLE badge is for a game with lots of things in the game that can be interacted with, within the game.


The BARREL OF LAUGHS badge is for when a game boasts a keen, sharp wit and several laugh out loud moments.

The BEVERLY badge is for a game that would make even Jean-Luc Picard want to spend time with Wesley.  




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