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 Review: PING 1.5 + (Wii U eShop)

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Professor Clayton
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PostReview: PING 1.5 + (Wii U eShop)

Guide Your Cube to Safety


PING 1.5+ is another in the long line of Indie games being released on the Wii U eShop, but manages to bring a more unique approach in gaming to the table than some of its competition. PING 1.5+ is, in essence, a puzzle game adaptation of classic arcade game PONG, though one with hard as nails gameplay.

In PING 1.5+, you control a cube who goes to war with other cubes, and travel through levels in order to eat the pixelated oranges at the end of each level. While the premise is a bit odd, it is explained in retro gaming fashion- mainly in the game's manual, which is a happy surprise for those of us who take a look in the electronic manuals.


Following in this retro loving fashion, PING 1.5+ is composed entirely of pixels, though far from the expected modernly retro pixel artwork, Nami Tentou Mushi opted for even more of a classic look with distinct pixels making up the enemies and platforms. It all fuses together with a nice techno soundtrack in order to create a relatively engaging experience for players.

In most of the well over 100 levels, you guide a pixel to the goal by executing a certain number of Shots with the stylus or left control stick, and the pixel ricochets off of the surrounding areas up to a certain number of hits. Ideally, you'll control the pixel and make it to the goal in less than the number of hits and bounces, and move on to the next level. However, it quickly becomes apparent that the developers didn't intend for you to quickly move on, as each level has the potential to be anywhere from fairly easy to brutally difficult.

The difficulty is welcome, especially in such a heavily retro inspired game, but the uneven difficulty balances in PING 1.5+ can create a frustrating experience for players. In every world, there are always bound to be the one or two levels which take a few extra tries to complete, however with levels taking dozens of tries to complete, the standout levels can take potentially hundreds of attempts. This is a bit of an off-putting feature for some, as it can lead to what is basically an impasse and the end of their game, as you can't move to the next world without beating every level in the current one. There is also a randomness factor at play, as after the first few bounces, it can become hard to predict where the pixel will go, making some levels into a chance rather than skill based affair.


While you may not ever get to see every level (though you can input a cheat code in order to unlock every level- a feature we wish was much more emphasised) the ones on hand can be quite innovative. Some boss batttles take cue from classic arcade games, which we won't spoil, but have you reenacting and mimicking the games of years past. While again, some of the difficulty is a bit off, the levels ideas will all make any retro gamer smile at this modern adaptation.

Indeed, the best way to describe PING 1.5+ may very well be retro, as it strives to be so in everything that it does. From the graphics, to the sound effects, retro gaming influences and brutal difficulty, PING 1.5+ feels like an 80's developer had been handed a Wii U to develop games on. While the retro influence is welcome, the difficulty balancing issues and occasional small glitches also accompany PING 1.5+ to the Wii U eShop. If you enjoy a difficult game, the random crazy action which is PING 1.5+ may be perfect for you, but for more modern gamers it may be a bit too difficult to enjoy.

7.5/10

Review copy provided by NAMI TENTOU MUSHI
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Review: PING 1.5 + (Wii U eShop) :: Comments

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Re: Review: PING 1.5 + (Wii U eShop)
Post on Tue Nov 11, 2014 6:59 pm by Knuckles
Great review Clay, its not for me, but good read regardless.
 

Review: PING 1.5 + (Wii U eShop)

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