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Hands-onPreview

Preview: Blitz Breaker – Modern GameBoy platforming

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Blitz Brea­ker is a plat­for­mer that laun­ches on Febru­a­ry 2nd on Steam. We were able to try out a near­ly final ver­si­on.

It’s qui­te easy to sum up Blitz Brea­ker‘s sto­ry: You’re the robot Blitz (Ger­man for light­ning) which tri­es to escape the faci­li­ty it was made in. This pro­ves to be chal­len­ging as the fac­to­ry is basi­cal­ly made out of traps and spikes. And so you help Blitz to suc­ceed in the 101 levels of this twitch plat­for­mer until your pati­ence is final­ly relie­ved as is the freed Blitz.

Deve­lo­per Bon­cho Games names as one of the main fea­tures that you can play throughout the game with just one hand. You can play the game with con­trol­ler or key­board. With our key­board ses­si­on we can con­firm this the­sis. The game is desi­gned in a way that you can dash into four direc­tions and make a short jump in the direc­tion you’re facing.

The levels are fit­ted that play­style. Every level is made up several screens which are con­nec­ted through doors you have to unlock by picking up keys or you have to break through walls with several dashes. In the begin­ning that’s not too hard but while play­ing through world 1 (about 20 levels) we crun­ched our teeth one or the other time. The level design is cle­ver­ly done, the lear­ning cur­ve not too steep and the count­less nods to gen­re rivals as 1001 Spikes puts a smirk on your face if you know the­se games. At the end of each world you face a boss. The first boss fills the screen with rota­ting saws, so you got­ta be quick on your toes but also tre­at care­ful­ly.

The con­trols are pret­ty direct and even in the smal­lest nuan­ces you still have con­trol. It’s defi­ni­te­ly your fault or the one of your input device if you don’t make a cer­tain level. Ins­tead of going strai­ght to the level exit you can also pick up coins and a pur­ple rec­t­ang­le that does not tele­port you to Tho­mas Was Alo­ne but gains you a star per level.

The visu­als of Blit­zer Brea­ker are real­ly color­ful. They’re fullon retro and also the who­le game is in a box that seems to repli­ca­te the screen of an old Game­Boy. Oppo­si­te to Super Nintendo’s Super Game­Boy you can defi­ni­te­ly chan­ge the back­grounds and give your game­play a dif­fe­rent feel. Com­bi­ning the high game speed and the high-vol­ta­ge prot­ago­nist reminds us of the recent­ly laun­ched Down­well (XTga­mer video). The chip­tu­ne like sound­track adds the final ingre­dient to the Game­Boy style game.

Conclusion

In our short ses­si­on with Blitz Brea­ker it offe­red us uncom­pli­ca­ted arca­de fun. You quick­ly get used to the simp­le mecha­nics and tight con­trols. The care­ful­ly though­tout level design makes the game both chal­len­ging and moti­vat­ing, even though you’re real­ly frus­tra­ted at times. If you like the­se kind of games – like VVVV, SMB, Bit.Trip Run­ner -, then you should keep your eyes pee­led for Blitz Brea­ker‘s Febru­a­ry 2nd Steam release.

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