Speaking of punishing old school gameplay refried like a batch of beans and made all the more potent, I recently played the demo of current Indie darling, VVVVVV. Its got pixels, single-screen rooms, requires absurd timing and just as much twitchy reflex as puzzle-solving gray matter. Where it gets the modern trimmings is with its hook — you don’t jump, you have one button that instantly changes gravity — and its checkpoint system.
So you can’t get too upset because while you’re punching your keyboard and your brain is melting out of your left nostril the most you’re typically set back is one screen’s width. No life counter to worry about. No continues. It’s only Game Over when you give up. That said, I had my fill from the demo when a series of moving platforms over a spike pit (and spike ceiling) proved just as daunting with gravity pulling in one direction as the other. I love what the game does and especially how it looks but I have no desire to punish my brain any further.
I did, however, buy the soundtrack by SoulEye, PPPPPP. It’s just as retro as you might expect from looking at the game and is as diverse in mood and atmosphere as it is loud and chiptuned. Like Shatter’s soundtrack it’s just as important as the visuals for setting the mood. You can check out both the game (here) and the music (here) for nothing but a few minutes of your time.
What do you think of VVVVVV and PPPPPP? Is it totally your thing or, like me, did it squash your cognitive logic like a microwaved M&M?