Review by RustyAim

"A beautiful albiet short challege that will test you."

After having played the demo for Braid, I wasn't sure if I wanted to get the full version. I'm not big on puzzle games nor am I that skilled with them. I however, decided to purchase it for various reasons (okay, a contact of Steam had it. Not the strongest of reasons but oh well.)

In short, you'll like this game if you like platform games and especially if you like puzzle games.

The puzzles are challenging and a lot of them force you think 4th dimensionally. The challenge level of the puzzles gives a real sense of accomplishment when you get a puzzle piece and especially when you finish a puzzle.

I've read that a hallmark of a good puzzle game is puzzles that are a challenge to figure out but once you know what to do; actually doing it shouldn't be too difficult.

Some of the puzzles in Braid can be annoying if you're unsure what to do. In some cases, solving them can involve timing and creative use of the controls and tools you get. Fortunately, the ability to skip any puzzle and come back to it helps to alleviate frustration that can come from trying to work out a difficult puzzle.

I only recommend using a game guide if you get really stuck. A lot of the joy comes from solving the more difficult puzzles. Looking up solutions might take some of that away.

If there was anything about this game that disappointed me, it was the length. As of this writing, it's $14.99 on Steam. Not a bad price but it just feels as though the game was too short.

Speaking of Steam, one neat thing I discovered was that once I installed it after buying it, I was able to keep my progress from the demo! I liked this because it made me feel as though they respect my time. It's a minor thing but I feel it worth noting.

All in all, Braid is a challenging but still fun game. I think you'll find the game enjoyable if you like challenging puzzles that require creative thinking. It's a nice albeit short diversion.

Overall:

Graphics: This game proves that graphics don't have to be 3D to be beautiful. Everything looks gorgeous. It's simple and reminds me of classic platform games without looking outdated. 9/10.

Sounds: The sound effects are simple enough but they get the job done. It doesn't have the voice acting (that I saw anyway) of most modern games. To be honest, it didn't need it. 8/10

Music: The music is relaxing and provides atmosphere that can be anything from serene to solemn to outright sinister. It's not perfect but as with the graphics and sounds effects, too fancy would probably be more distracting then anything. 8/10

Controls: The controls are nice and simple. As with the graphics, remind me of the days of having an up, down, left, right, jump and ability button. They get the job done with few problems. 9/10.

Gameplay: The puzzles are simple but challenging. You'll need to put thought into a lot of them. Some require excellent timing. Depending on your skill level, some can get frustrating but that's probably true of most if not all puzzle games. There are guides if you get stuck and you can come back to puzzles if needed. You can reverse time if you die which is very helpful and avoids a lot of potential frustration. The main letdown is that the game is just too short. 17/20

(I gave gameplay a lot more weight because I feel it's the most important aspect of the game.)

Overall: 51/60 or about 8.5.


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 04/29/09

Game Release: Braid (US, 04/10/09)


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