1. somerussianguy's Avatar
    The latest Humble Bundle pack features 5 games: Fieldrunners, BIT.TRIP BEAT, SpaceChem, Uplink, and Spirits. All cross platform for Android, Windows, Mac, and Linux.

    If you're not familiar with Humble Bundle, it is a pack of games that's available for a short time, for whatever price you want to pay, all DRM-free, and all include their soundtracks as well. If you pay more than the average though, you get an extra game.
    Download from Humble Bundle's official site: HumbleBundle.com


    NOTE: I copied these from my own site. If you want to see screenshots, check them out on my site (click the link below game's name), I'm too lazy to add screenshots here...

    Full Review

    First up from the latest Humble Bundle pack is a music/rhythm game, BIT.TRIP BEAT. It features 8-bit style graphics along with 8-bit sounding music and sound effects. This is going to be a quick review because there's not much to say about the game.


    I'm not even gonna do the Cons/Pros of the game, or break the game down into categories. Just a quick run down.
    Like I've mentioned before, the game features 8-bit style graphics. Everything is very colorful, and very blocky. Even for 8-bit. It was intentional, obviously. The look works, for the most part. The only small issue I have with the graphics is the text. Words are hard to read as is, numbers are even worse.

    Gameplay-wise, it's a cross between Pong and you basic music rhythm game. You control a small pad on the left side of the screen. You can move it up or down. The blocks come at you from the right and obviously you have to knock them back. Miss too many blocks and the game goes into this limbo mode where everything turns black and white and you have to hit most blocks that come at you to get back to normal game.

    There's only two modes of play on PC: Transition, which is basically the "campaign" mode where it gets more challenging with time. And Test, which... gets challenging faster than Transition mode. Yeah, I don't get the point of having 2 modes which are basically the same, except for different backgrounds. Test mode features some Portal background with GLaDOS moving around.

    Sound effects and music follow that simplistic 8-bit style. When you hit a block, it produces a sound. So hitting a few blocks in sequence creates a musical note. This is kind of the main point of the game - hit all the blocks to produce music. But it gets old. Fast.

    For me, the game's repetitive, and tedious. It's fun for about 5 minutes before the annoying 8-bit graphics and sound overstay their welcome.


    Android version has much better controls, courtesy of tilt or touch control. As well as two other modes: Descent and Growth. They are locked, however. And I'm not going to waste my time playing the game to unlock them. The game annoyed me enough already.

    If you do want to play BIT.TRIP BEAT, I suggest you pick up the Android version. Especially the tablet version.

    Full Review

    Second game to be reviewed from the Humble Bundle for Android 3 pack - Spirits. It's a laid-back physics-based 2D puzzler with an eye-catching art style and an awesome soundtrack.

    Windows & Android

    Graphics & Animation
    The visuals of Spirits are probably the selling point of the game. They have that charming 2-dimensional look. Although, pretty much all levels feature similar style - dark ground with either a sky-blue or a dust-brown background. Which does get repetitive after a while. Nevertheless, the visuals are very eye-catching and add to that serene atmosphere of the game.

    There's not much to say about animation because there's not much of it in this game. The walking, jumping, and flying animation of your Spirits is very jagged and robotic.

    Gameplay & Story
    Core gameplay
    Spirits is your basic physics-based puzzler. Your goal is to get a certain amount of spirits into the vortex. You can not control the movement of the spirits, but you can "sacrifice" spirits to use special abilities. You can make a spirit turn into a permanent air blower, which helps other spirits fly over large crevices or up onto higher grounds. You can use a spirit to drill through the ground or walls. Or use a spirit to create a short walkway upwards.

    While you select an ability to use, your spirit is frozen while others continue to move. This presents a certain amount of challenge, as the time it takes for you to select an ability, other spirits could pass your spirit and jump off a ledge into a spike-pit below. Another challenge is of course figuring out the proper, most efficient path to reach the vortex. In most of the levels the path is pretty straightforward. While others (see screenshot below) leave you scratching your WTF-filled head. I guess my only problem with the game is that the levels are too short/small. A lot of them can be completed in less than a minute.

    There is no story. Not even a half-assed comic book style cutout to explain who you're playing with, why, what's the purpose, or anything really.

    Sound & Music
    The sound department is just as barren as the storyline department. The only sound effects you get are those standard bells & whistles.

    I love the music in this game. Even though most of it sounds like a short loop that gets repeated over and over, it's the atmosphere it creates that consumes you! Some tracks sound like a mix of bliss and gloom. Some create an eerie ambiance. Some are simply beautiful and never get old no matter how many times they're played over and over. The last one being the title track. Which leads me to question as to why the hell was the best track in the game omitted from the game's downloadable soundtrack?!

    While the game does provide simplistic physics-based gameplay along with a serene atmosphere with its eye-candy visuals and an amazing soundtrack, that experience is short-lived. Primarily because of short levels. It is worth a play though. My suggestion is you try this on an Android tablet.

    Phone & app info:
    Phone: Galaxy Nexus, Android 4.1.1, rooted, ROM - Codename Android 3.3.0, kernel - faux's 20b9 3.0.41
    Tablet: Nexus 7, Android 4.1.1, non-rooted, ROM - stock, kernel - stock
    08-21-2012 10:15 AM