Nigel’s Adventure – A quest for the energy crystal is a very flash little game based on the story of a worm who is attempting to get an energy crystal. Created by ChaosWormz from the Game Maker community, it’s got multiple action packed levels, a huge variety of levels and most importantly an overly excitable worm bent on getting an energy crystal.
My first impression of the game is that it looks very neat and crisp mostly due to the graphics being nice and simple but effective in providing details of the landscape, the backgrounds were also simple and didn’t detract from what’s happening in the foreground as well as the nice and epic menu theme.
The game dives straight into the action immediately without much of a story line to go along with or why Nigel is trying to capture the bad worm, this makes the game fairly confusing to follow. I believe adding a little something at the start explaining why they are his enemies and what this crystal does would greatly improve the overall reception of the game, as this game seems to be based around the story line. The game does progress without a “visible” story although it just seems like the worm is wandering throughout the land searching for the crystal, not picking up hints of it’s location along the way. The addition of save slots is very nice, allowing multiple people from one pc to play through the game at different levels and speeds which very few games support this feature.
The first level of the game was very tough, . . . Until I worked out I could shoot, which made things much, much easier. Although I wish I was told that earlier on in the game rather than find out by spamming buttons or having to look at the help guide. Once I learnt to shoot I really spammed the button due to having no alarms to limit the shots per second, this was also quite fun and difficult as now I had to repeatedly press shoot while moving and dodging bullets which saved time. Because it took awhile to learn all the controls, I would have liked to see some form of short tutorial or more pop-up buttons to guide the player from no experience in the game to a full blown pro by the end of the same level. The best way to test if players get the hang of the game and learn all of the controls is to sit someone down who’s never played it before and takes notes while they play. Although due to the late stage of this game this isn’t needed as much if you simply let the player know what buttons to press.
Sometimes throughout the level I ran out of jet pack energy which was extremely annoying as the only option you had to get over large jumps was to die and return to the jump. This made me conserve my jet pack in later levels although it would have been nice to have an alternate way around certain parts if you have no jet pack energy left or it recharges slowly over time. On a slightly different note it would be EPIC if there was a level dedicated to using a jet pack the whole way with unlimited fuel, such as chasing the enemy in their hover ships. I believe it would add just that bit of extra enjoyment needed to make the player stick with the game longer as well as providing a different landscape and tactics.
If you’d like to play the demo version of the game please click the link below:
The music was mostly pleasant throughout the game, taking note particularly of the intro theme and level 1’s theme music, which I enjoyed thoroughly. A few of the level’s music was very repetitive however and I had to turn it down to stop me going insane, the worst offender is the level 5’s theme which when played multiple times over you just get annoyed at the game in general purely because it’s distracting and louder than the music in other levels.
The sound effects fitted well with the game, and I swear some of Nigel’s sound effects are from the actual worms game, possibly when he jumps? Anyway there were a few sounds missing such as bullet shots on some enemies, a sound for the electric gun the enemies wielded later on, as this would have told me they are nearby and to prepare for them.
One thing I didn’t really like was the fact that I didn’t know what some buttons did after pressing them, such as the brown and green ones. I eventually worked it out however but then ran into another object I didn’t know what it did, those extra large health objects that appeared rarely throughout the game as no stats in the left hand corner increased after picking them up. Due to this I recommend some form of a text popup over it when the player either gets close or picks it up, much like the helpful signs scattered across the land.
There is a fairly large difference between each level which I really liked, as I wasn’t stuck doing the same thing on each new level with a slight tweak. The submarine level is what i’m talking about here, rather than another typical shooting level. What I don’t understand however, is how he finds a submarine station and what appears to be a lake full of enemy subs, again there’s no real link between the level before and the level after. I especially liked the anti-gravity pads and gravity changers, it was quite fun playing the game upside-down rather than normal, it also added a unique twist and fun element to the game which was nice.
There are a few slight errors in the game which I’ve listed below due to not being placeable in any other category such as; The collisions are off by a few pixels which causes errors such as being able to hide from the boss’s worms on level 4 on the right wall, and bullets being shot when your gun is put away. Another quite random error when I click on the website link on the menu, it opens 4 web pages of the same thing instead of one, although this could just be my browser playing up. A few of the sections in the map where you had to drop down to looked as if they dropped down forever thus stopping me trying to go down. The music on level 4 consisted of gunfire sounds which confused me occasionally as I thought the enemy was attempting to shoot me through a wall or something, level 4 was also a big jump in difficulty, having to attempt it multiple times. Although I liked that the game is getting more challenging I felt that the jump between this and the level before was too great.
Some of the text that appeared through the game appeared under the sprites making it almost unreadable, it would also sometimes be a similar color to the background making it difficult to read. Something that confused me was the water on level 1 is harmless to the player whereas the water on every other level killed you instantly. This was fairly annoying as they are colored exactly the same way but have different effects, therefore I recommend some form of distinguished features that tell the player this is deadly, such as coloring it red instead of blue.
Overall this is a nice clean-cut game with a simple yet colorful palette which I believe would be most beneficial to younger players, combined with the simplicity of the game and the fact that it’s fairly easy to learn once you know the controls. Although the story line needs a bit of work to develop the characters a little more as well a proving a reason for wanting this crystal which relatively goes un-solved throughout the game as well a logical sequence to the levels. The music and sounds effects were nice and coherent with the rest of the game although I would have liked to see the objects without sound effects getting some, and some extra music added for levels to mix it up a bit. I believe this game would be brilliant for kids between 8 and 12, any older I feel they would outgrow the simplicity of the game and would want more tactics and difficulty.
It’s a very nice game you’ve got here ChaosWormz and i’m looking forward to seeing any updates you do.
“Game Designer, Programmer and Studier“
This is a different rating guide from the Completed Game’s, it shows where the game is ranked right now and after the owner improves features the ratings will change.
Here’s the final score out of 100%:
WIP Story: 65%
WIP Game-play: 65%
WIP Graphics: 60%
WIP Sound/Music: 70%
WIP Fun Rating: 75%
WIP Addict-ability: 70%
WIP Portability: 80%
50% is Pass.
0% – 24% = Hopeless Game, A Terrible WIP game not even worth play-testing.
25% – 49% = Terrible Game, This game will not prove to be very enjoyable, and may only be played once and forgotten.
50% – 59% = Average Game, A very mediocre game that you may play occasionally to pass time but doesn’t prove to be very enjoyable.
60% – 69% = Nice Game, A game that’s enjoyable but contains lots of errors and ultimately leaves you wanting more.
70% – 79% = Brilliant Game, A game that’s very fun and addicting to play but doesn’t quite stand out from other games, yet.
80% – 89% = Fantastic Game, A very fun game that proves time and time again to be enjoyable and addictive, but contains a few things that could be improved on.
90% – 99% = Amazing Game, Extremely Enjoyable and has lots of replay-ability content, and would benefit from being sold.
100% = Epic Game, A WIP definitely worth selling, you’d probably make a huge chunk of cash.