• Love It: Evoland

    I am a fan of criticism (shocking, I know). While it is inherently negative, its application can be positive. One criticism that has turned up a few times is that I am judging games while not playing through their entirety. I am going to take this opportunity to remind my illiterate dear readers that Love It or Hate It is not a series of traditional reviews. I simply do not have the time to play all the way through every single game that I already have, much less everything that comes out. Who does? Thatís why we read and write reviews. But beyond that, itís always been glaringly obvious to me early into playing a game whether or not I was going to love or hate it.

    Today we are looking at an indie game that hearkens back to the games from my childhood: Evoland. I donít like to reinvent the wheel (or Iím lazy, take your pick). Behold the description from the Steam store page:

    ďEvoland is a journey through the history of action/adventure gaming, allowing you to unlock new technologies, gameplay systems and graphic upgrades as you progress through the game.Ē

    Sound neat? Well, it did to me, and the trailer hooked me.

    Iím pleased to report that it did not disappoint. I love Evoland.

    In my previous review I griped about the lack of anything really new in BioShock Infinite. I donít have the same complaint about Evoland. With this game you want the old; obviously the appeal here is nostalgia. You want to take a trip down Memory Lane, turning down Zelda St. and Final Fantasy Ave. From the point of gameplay, this is nothing new. Been there, done that. And thatís fine. Even the story here isnít new. Itís pretty much straight out of every classic console RPG ever, and often pokes fun at them, and at itself. Itís funny looking back at how formulaic everything was (and still is).

    But then there is a freshness to Evoland and it is in the evolution of the game, and its presentation. Youíll unlock color, sound, music, and then gradually more modern improvements to the graphics and sound. Youíll traverse different eras relatively quickly. Sometimes too quickly. Iíve played through just over an hour of the game and Iíve gone from a Gameboy-like experience, to NES, SNES, and N64.

    But that's not all. You will also unlock a slew of features that evolved with the genre. I've picked up a few new tricks on my travels through video game history. Monsters, your days are numbered. You won't hit me just once and watch me die anymore. No sir. I have a shiny new health bar. You might think you have me on the run. But then I'll smack you right in your dumb monster ass with my legendary sword and reinvigorate myself with the heart you dropped for me. And answer me this: can you level up, motherfucker? I did. Iíve played Zelda. Dragon Warrior. Final Fantasy. Iím now playing a souped-up Zelda 64, and Iím looking forward to more.

    If the concept and the nostalgia appeal to you, go ahead and spend the meager $10 you'll drop on Evoland. The experience will remind you of many games that you may have spent several times that amount on. The only things missing here are the annoyances of hooking up multiple consoles and blowing dust out of the cartridges.
    Comments 5 Comments
    1. Warprosper's Avatar
      Warprosper -
      Thanks for calling me illiterate. I simply said that games of a large magnitude need to be reviewed on a full scale, and that you should not persuade people to buy or not to buy based on that notion. With that being said, I enjoy your series, but I think you need to stick to the smaller scale games as it will help to define your series.

      On to the article. I'll look into this game a little more. Was always a fan of this style of game.
    1. a weakling spaz's Avatar
      a weakling spaz -
      Warprosper, this is not a shot at you, and is in jest.. My wife actually prompted this one when she asked about the Evoland article I was writing, and then asked how I could judge the game if I haven't finished it. I figured a reminder of the basis of the series couldn't hurt. If it helps to compare to something more traditional, think of my articles as impressions. In some cases I have finished a game prior to writing about it, but this will often not be the case. Your criticism here is much more helpful than "go play the game." If I'd found it interesting enough I would have.
    1. Warprosper's Avatar
      Warprosper -
      Either way, I'm gonna buy this one

      Keep the articles coming.
    1. Walkerxes's Avatar
      Walkerxes -
      Way too short of a game. You could have played another 10 minutes and had been able to do a full review.. also, I found the being drawn into a turn-based battle every 5 seconds in the map, and certain dungeons, scream-inducingly obnoxious (and forget the boss battles). That being said, worth the 10 bucks? yeah, I'd say so.

      I do wish they'd progressed a bit further in the evolution of this game type, but I liked the use of going back and forth in "time" (aka graphics) in certain areas to progress through the areas.
    1. a weakling spaz's Avatar
      a weakling spaz -
      I didn't mind the random encounters that much and that part of the game was fairly brief. A lot of the games that had those initially also had an obnoxious frequency to them. It is totally a short game, but I still think it's worth the $10. It's longer than a movie, and I don't get that here for $10.