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Offline leinad

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NDS Games review
« on: September 06, 2009, 05:41:39 AM »


NDS Games review
by n00bey



Rating system

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
CategoryCriteriaMaximal points
Graphics
  • Quality of sprites&BGs
  • Number of graphics
.
15
Sound
  • Sound-effects
  • Backgroundmusic
  • Variety
.
15
Gameplay
  • Gameplay
  • Repetitive or not?
  • Replay value
.
20
Extra
  • WiFi stuff (2)
  • Bonus [2]
    I will give +2 (or +1) if I think that there is something special to reward
  • Motion-Support (3)
  • Original entry (3)
.
10
Total.60
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The reviews are sorted alphabetically.




Overview

Pos.Project nameGFXSoundGameplayExtraTotal
1.Operation Libra10917642
2.DawnSeekers1489536
3.Burn The Rope10125330
4.Around the Clock8710528
5.OMG WTF4127326
6.DSDice10012325
7.Seek And Recharge838324
8.Stargrazer484319
9.Lights Off!806317
10.Alien Puzzle308314
11.TouchRight!271313
12.Hangman414312
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
--.Xplosive Combat----------
--.Five Error----------
--.Bouncy Marble----------
--.DronS----------

Xplosive Combat: The download at the release therad gives me "Erreur 500 - Erreur interne du serveur" and the binary in the games-pack has the wrong splash-screen.
Five Error got stuck on the menu-screen...
There is no review of Bouncy Marble and DronS because those are my projects... I don't think reviewing my own games would look fair xD




Alien Puzzle

In this game by GEMESIS your full concentration is required. You are playing as a weird little oval and
the goal is to reach the finish-teleporter and to collect as many points you can on the way.
The clue: once you made the first move the oval will not stop after releasing the button. You always have to payattention so you don't fly into a bomb and die.
The game comes with 5 levels and supports highscore-saving.
It also is possible to make your own levels. But the levels are done in a texteditor, no leveleditor app.

Graphics:
3
2 Color (Red&Green) menu screen.
5 plain 8x8 sprites.
A black background with some white dots.
Sorry, but I cant give more for it x(


Sound:
0
You hear nothing when turning on the speakers


Gameplay:
8
Intuitive gameplay
It is one of the games requiring your full attention
Because of points/highscore you tent to play it more often
Only five levels
Level editors are nice, but there still should be more integrated levels.


Extra:
3
Original entry [+3]


Total:
13
Nice idea & gameplay. But it lacks on levels, better graphics and some sounds.


Bugs &
Suggestions
Allow the use of DPad on menu... pulling out the stylus just for pressing "Start" is annoying.
Mirror the DPad to ABXY maybe.
Think out something for the bottom screen, it looks so empty.



Around the Clock

The good old dart game. Your task is to throw Darts and hit the fields number-wise from 1 to 20.
The aiming-process seems to simulate that you drunk some vodka before, so don't expect it to be too easy. And on top of that you have too keep track of the power-bar to throw the dart with the right power.
There are three different levels: In easy you just need to hit the singles. In medium the doubles and on hard the trebles.
You control you hand with the DPad and then throw the dart with B.

Graphics:
8
Nice board, but the numbers look weird.
All numbers in the interface are printed like on digital-clocks.
Sweet keyboard
(Very) Plain menu


Sound:
7
Background music fits to the game
A short sound when a dart hits the board or if it drops down.


Gameplay:
10
3 different levels
Highscores
Simulating a unsteady hand so it isn't too easy
Power bar - you have to react in the right moment
It takes the time & the darts you threw.
No stylus support


Extra:
5
Original entry [+3]
WiFi features [+2]



Total:
29
Very good execution of dart on the DS. Worth a try
But for me it is like with real dart: Gets boring too fast


Bugs &
Suggestions
Add stylus support for aiming



DawnSeekers

Another 3D shooter by smealum - this time a first person one.
In this demo you can play on two different maps. For now just two wapeons are aviable.
Just walk trough the maps, kill everything and eventually pick up the munition or health packets.

Graphics:
14
Full 3D, realy impressive for a homebrew.
Awesome artwork.
Interface looks good too
Im missing the light effects :( [-1]


Sound:
8

One background music for each map and then just the shooting effects.
The shooting is a bit too quiet compared to the music.


Gameplay:
9
Solid engine
The enemies have an AI
Good overview on the bottom screen (Wapeons, the radar, munition, health)
Only two wapeons
No story
No real 'line' you have to walk
No save/load
Well, just killing the enemies IMO is no real goal :(
Gets boring realy fast...


Extra:
5
Original entry [+3]
A 3D shooter engine should be worth [+2]



Total:
36
Awesome GFX / Engine.
But even the best engine means nothing if there is no real gameplay.


Bugs &
Suggestions
It's still a demo.
You maybe can guess it: "More wapeons/maps/a story please"



DSDice

DSDice is a yahtzee game. To tell you how the game works would take more than the space next to the screen on the right offers. So see www.yahtzee.org.uk for the rules.
In short: you dice and then have to collect points.
(That was a REALY short explaination, lol).
In the end it is just another gambling game.

Graphics:
10
3 different themes
Effects on the buttons
Looks very high-toned, gives you the professional casino feeling :o
Smooth minimizing effect when calling the score-paper
Even the highscore screen has a professional feeling

Except of the text/buttons/menu there is nothing else I can give points for, sorry x(


Sound:
0
No sound


Gameplay:
12
The game works how it is supposed to work
Easy interface
Has a highscore list
It's nothing I would play too often...


Extra:
3
Original entry [+3]



Total:
25
It's something other than the usual homebrew.
First the theme feels more professional and the game is not just primitive smashing on ABXY-Button :p


Bugs &
Suggestions
Some sounds and at least a background music would be cool.



Five Error

Sorry, but I can't get this game working...
I have the same problem like Sweater Fish Deluxe; See here. I'm using a DSTT.


Hangman

It's the normal hangman-game everyone should know.
In every round you have to try to unveil a randomly choosen word. This is done by choosing letters. But everytime you choose a letter that isn't in the word you are closer to getting hanged. If you get the whole word you win, otherwise you will be hanged...

This hangman-game features some words out of the gaming sector (how often did you use the therm "Super Mario" on hangman yet ?)

Graphics:
4
Just one background and then sprites of the body parts that get hanged.
Plain and simple.
Keyboard is too small


Sound:
1
Just two very short sounds.
Either a plop' if you guessed a right letter or otherwise a snare


Gameplay:
4
After the 4th word it got that boring that I turned of my DS.
Hangman is something that you play with friends IMO; the fun is missing.


Extra:
3
Original entry [+3]



Total:
12
It's not a bad idea, but the execution is way too plan&short.


Bugs &
Suggestions
Bug: If you touch the screen outside of the keyboard it still registers it as if a key was pressed

Add some background music
Make the keyboard bigger
Maybe different difficulties, so you get hanged faster



Lights Off!

Another puzzle game; in this one you see a 5x5 field of squares and your task is to 'turn the lights off'. To win all squares must be grey. In the most basic mode all squares can be either blue or grey - on or off. By tapping on a square it and the suqares next to it change their state.
The game has 4 different difficulties - where difficulty describes the minimum moves required to finish the actual puzzle. The easiest levels can be finished in 20~40 moves, in the hardest level 400 or more moves are required.
But you not only can change the level but also the number of light states. In the basic mode you just have blue lights, in the highest one there are 4 different lights (blue, dark blue, purple and red).
On the bottom screen on the right side you can see how many moves you did for now and the minimum-moves required for this level. Below those informations you can set the lights-number and the difficulty. 

Graphics:
8
The interface on the bottom screen makes a solid impression.
Every text is written into a small box so you can read it pretty well.
The colors of the lights are okay, no big contrasts but you can still differentiate them.
The LITE/DIFF buttons are bit too small, when I click on them I usualy don't get what I want and so have to tap onto the region for multiple times.
The top-screen looks very odd. Some proper GFX would look better there.
And whats with that little weird-looking piece in the lower right corner of the bottom screen?


Sound:
0
Sadly there is no sound :(
I hope you can add a background music and/or a sound when changing the lights.


Gameplay:
6
The game is very difficult in my opinion. I tried it with the strategy posted in the release therad; In the easiest mode I gave up after 200 moves. I played it for about 10 minutes and I couldnt solve ANY of the basic levels.
I miss some good guide or a tutorial explaining how to make it trough a game.
If there realy are no real strategies for this: sorry, I just seem to fail on that game
I will most likely never start this game again x/


Extra:
3
Original entry [+3]


Total:
17
Usualy I like puzzle games, but this one seems to be an exception.


Bugs &
Suggestions
Bug: When you start a new level the move-counter isn't set to zero...

Please, add some ingame guide or even a tutorial.



OMG WTF

Weird name for a game... but I will just skip the name-choosing and get to the description :P
This game is another clone of the tetris game. Odd shaped blocks are falling from the sky and you have to arrange them in a possibly intelligent way. The game ends when your 'tower' reaches the top of the screen. You have to prevent it to do that by arranging the blocks so you get filled horizontal lines. Every horizontal filled line gets removed and the 'tower' will fall down and you will get some score.
In this clone there are 4 different game-modes:
A traditional mode in which you just have to stay alive as long as possible.
A 'clear limit' in which you have to clear 50 lines as fast as possible.
A 'time limit' mode in which you have to clear as many lines you can in 5 minutes.
And a 'garbage' mode where you already start with some red-blocks on the screen. You have to get rid of all the red-squares to finish a level.

Graphics:
4
It's just a black background, no real interface and the standard tiled-font.


Sound:
12
Some old jazz music is played in the background. It sounded odd on the beginning, but after playing for some minutes it's not that bad. It is different than the usual retro-game-music you hear on ordinary tetris-games.
And a big plus because there is more than just one track that loops the whole time; 20 according to the release therad.

I miss sounds when stacking a block or finishing a line...


Gameplay:
7
It's a good tetris-clone in my eyes. Including 4 (3? see bugs) different game modes.
After selecting a game-mode you first get a short & sweet instruction about it.
Everything seems to work like expected :)
And with highscore-saving there always is a goal for the next play.

Now to the downside: the game is far too easy...
I played the traditional mode for 15 minutes, got into lvl 6 12000 score and 88 lines cleared.
I was almost holding the down-button for the complete playtime.
Clear & Time limit seem to be a bit faster, but still too easy in my opinion :(



Extra:
3
Original entry [+3]



Total:
26
Nice clone of the good old classic. But slow block-falling ruined the game in my eyes :(


Bugs &
Suggestions
Garbage mode doesn't seem to work ?
I started it several times, but I never saw any red blocks...
Please, make the menu button-based; pulling out the stylus just to start the game is annoying.
The falling speed of blocks should increase regulary.



Operation Libra

Operation Libra is an escape the room game for the DS.
You have been kidnapped and then locked up in a building. After you managed to untie yourself you try to find a way to escape. On the bottom screen you see the groundplan of the room you actually are in and on the upper screen you see what is in front of you right now. When walking with the DPad the viewport changes regulary. During the game you need to examine the objects to find a way out of the room and in the end out of the building. Of course it's more difficult that it sounds :) There are many little puzzles and hidden hints that you need to find in order to escape.

Graphics:
10
On the bottom screen you see the room in a bird's eye perspective, so it looks a bit weird. On the top screen you see parts of the actual scene from a first-person view. Almost everything ist black&white, not much colors.


Sound:
9
There are sound effects for most stuff. But the background music can realy get on your nerves after some time :(


Gameplay:
17
Outstanding. One of the very rare homebrew that isn't just minigames doing the same thing all the time.


Extra:
6
Original entry [+3]
Motion support [+3]


Total:
42
Two words: MUST HAVE!


Bugs &
Suggestions
Bug: When you start a new game and you press A on the introducion, the game room already blends in. But the introducion continues; the green text is completly unreadable then.
Bug: After saving the game seems to mix up about your position... you can go trough walls and stuff but then get stuck where you should be able to walk trough.
Sometimes it flickers a bit when printing text.



Seek And Recharge

There we go, the DS is a perfect plattform for puzzle games. Seek And Recharge is one of it.
In this one you play a tiny roboter that needs to get new batteries before it runs out of power.
Not only that you have to reach the battery in a given number of rounds, but there also are fields you must not touch - otherwise you also discharge and the game ends. The board is 8x8 in size and each square can be red, green or blue. Every three rounds the color cycles around. By using up one round the roboter also can change his color. The roboter must not stand on a square the same color like he is.

Graphics:
9
The menu graphics are pretty simple, but better than just a black or white background.
Ingame you see two boards in an isometric view, one on each screen. On the upper one you can see the the squares dangerous for you right now. On the bottom one you have an overview about the complete board-layout and what colors will be next.
All the graphics look clear and seem to fit. But except of the roboter and the batteries there arn't that many complex objects.


Sound:
4
Just an endless loop of a rather simple music.
A 'plop' sound on every move.
And some computer-generated speech that I cannot understand... it sounds uberly weird.


Gameplay:
8
It is very complex on the beginning and it took some time for me to even complete the first level. But after some time it realy made fun.
Because it has 100 of levels I will play it for a longer time to finish em all ! :P

But in my opinion it is bad that you have to solve a level before you can go to the next one. What if you realy get stuck ? You at least should be able to select from the next 2 levels to unlock something.


Extra:
3
Original entry [+3]



Total:
24
Great game and it seems realy finished. 


Bugs &
Suggestions
Remove the weird speakings...
Maybe add different music themes.



Stargrazer

Another spaceshooter game... Stay alive as long as possible and try to kill as many enemies as possible.

Graphics:
4
I dislike how the graphics not fit to eachother. Either do a comic style shooter or a 'realistic looking' one. When comparing the background with the objects most people should see what I mean. And the enemies in general seem to be weirdly different...
The menu looks ... pixely ...


Sound:
8
There is a well choosen background music and there are sounds for shooting & explosions.


Gameplay:
4
The engine seems okay, the enemies lack of an AI in my opinion.
There are different wapeons and different enemies.
One boss for now.
There is an endless mode where enemies spawn constantly.
And there is a highscore list, but names arn't saved.
But there is anything making the game special compared to the other 638487239... spaceshooters, so it gets boring too fast.


Extra:
3
Original entry [+3]


Total:
19
Worth a try, but it's just another spaceshooter.



TouchRight!

In TouchRight! you have to solve some math problems. You input the answer with you fingers - no, you don't type: You put that much fingers on the screen you think the answer is.

Graphics:
2
Except of the Touch-Right screen everything seems quickly done without much afford.
But it still has the feeling of being complete...


Sound:
7
On the menu screen there is some background music and after that ...
Holy ****, the game talks to you! You read it right, the character is directly talking to you.



Gameplay:
1
C'mon, thats no game. It gives you weird problems and you just have some seconds to think about them.
And even if you got the answer, the input doesn't seem very reliable.
Btw. after some time I always put 4 fingers on the screen and one time it took it as 2.


Extra:
4
Original entry [+3]
[+1] for the multitouch stuff


Total:
14
It's not realy a game... more of a tech demo.


Bugs &
Suggestions
The input doesn't work that well.



Xplosive Combat

First: The download in the release therad gives me "Erreur 500 - Erreur interne du serveur"
So I took the binary out of the game-pack archive, but...
Second: The game do not include the right splash-screen. On the left you see what splashscreen it used.


You Have To Burn The Rope DS

2D sidescrolling action ! And finally some game even I could finish :p
In YHTBTR you have to defeat the boss by burning the rope that holds the chandelier so it falls down.
It is just one map - one level. But now the clue: You can activate different modifications.
To just call some:
Miniature mod- your character will be realy small.
Black Out mod- you will not be able to see anything.
Hyperspeed- everything runs 2 times faster

Graphics:
10
There arnt that many different graphics, but everything looks rather okay.
There are animations for almost everything



Sound:
12
Backgroundmusic realy fits to the actual happening.
Even a congratulations-music just for this game.
There also are sounds for every action so far.


Gameplay:
5
The game sadly has a short playtime...
You have to play for some time to get the archivements and so unlock the modifications, but in the end its always the same level without anything spectacular...


Extra:
3
Original entry [+3]


Total:
30
Outstanding in music & graphics. But the game itself is somewhat disappointing.
Now played it for some time, but I doubt I will ever play it again.




« Last Edit: September 06, 2009, 05:55:09 AM by leinad »
-n00bey

Offline M. Lucanius

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Re: NDS Games review
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2009, 06:04:25 AM »
Quote from: leinad
In the end it is just another gambling game.

Ahh!  ??? What? No, It's not supposed to be a gambling game. Gambling is

1 a : to play a game for money or property b : to bet on an uncertain outcome
2 : to stake something on a contingency : take a chance

At best, it is a game where you "take a chance" but it is not supposed to be a gambling game. Gambling is a terrible problem where I live, and I would hate to make such a thing. Please don't consider my game a gambling game. ~sm-44.gif~

Quote from: leinad
Looks very high-toned, gives you the professional casino feeling

It had no neon lights at least ~sm-44.gif~

Quote from: leinad
Some sounds and at least a background music would be cool.

Yes, another feature I had no time for... next time.

Nice review btw.
There are only 10 kinds of people in this world, those who know binary and those who don't.

Offline leinad

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Re: NDS Games review
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2009, 06:13:34 AM »
Hm, @"gambling" & "high toned"  , I'm not that good at english so I used a dict for most stuff x/

When I said "gambling" I meant that it is a game that just bases on luck (what numbers come out). Of course you can affect the outcome by deciding when to get the points, but like every game that uses dices it comes down to your luck.

@ "high-toned": Hm, the translator gave me this and it word-to-word translated it sounded right x/.  elegant,graceful,gracious,swanky,classy are some other words the dict gave me =$

I assume there are much more words that are a bit out of meaning :(
-n00bey

Offline M. Lucanius

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Re: NDS Games review
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2009, 06:34:29 AM »
Quote from: leinad
I'm not that good at english so I used a dict for most stuff x/
Wow, you could have fooled me. It read like English was your native language.

Quote from: leinad
When I said "gambling" I meant that it is a game that just bases on luck (what numbers come out). Of course you can affect the outcome by deciding when to get the points, but like every game that uses dices it comes down to your luck.
The same thing could be said for poker (which is definitely gambling). The primary difference is that gambling involves betting (risking money or other possessions on the outcome). Because so many lives have been ruined by people doing this, gambling has received a very bad reputation.

Quote from: leinad
"high-toned"...
No there's nothing wrong with high-toned. That's a good thing. What I didn't want was for it to look like a "casino" game. I guess it's inevitable, though, considering the big button in the middle.

Quote from: leinad
I assume there are much more words that are a bit out of meaning
Not really. It seemed quite good
« Last Edit: September 06, 2009, 09:01:18 AM by M. Lucanius »
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Offline Gaz

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Re: NDS Games review
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2009, 05:19:24 AM »
Great reviews  :)

::sm-22.gif:: ::sm-22.gif:: ::sm-22.gif::

& Nice layout  ::sm-11.gif::

I never though about using the stylus for the controls; I developed it for my own comfort so I could just use the d-pad and buttons (I am a couch potato!).  Did you mean flick the stylus like other darts games?  I have played a flash game that did this; and found it nearly impossible to control the dart, which was another reason I used the d-pad.

The numbers are not the best.  I was in a rushed to finish the program in time, so I used them for everything to save making another bank of sprite numbers.

I am working on updates for the music and graphics.

Thanks for the feedback,   ~sm-36.gif~
« Last Edit: September 07, 2009, 05:24:47 AM by Gaz »