I applaud the off the wall presentation! Clean Asia feels like a work of art. Good thing that it plays well, too. There’s a very satisfying mix of the absurd with good playability and excellent audiovisual execution. The lo-fi visuals are almost to die for, the music by John Marwin is great.
Too bad the gameplay is a bit convoluted. Based on a couple of plays, I don’t think quite so many buttons and options are justified.
Even the website kicks ass, get over there right now! Scandinavian pride!
The overall presentation is spot on. Graphics are up there with the best indie efforts I’ve seen; absolutely delicious sprites and animation. Music and sounds are just like in the arcades. While obviously an imitation of an era past, this is clearly a work of dedicated love.
I’m not entirely hot on the gameplay, though. They have not over-complicated matters, but there’s a lack on innovation and overall things just feel a bit off. I died a lot in circumstances which I feel shouldn’t be quite so difficult. This still comes off as recommended, a lot so.
Linley Henzell’s entry, titled Excellent, is a cute dual take on the basic vertical scroller. The graphics are all neat, but a little undefined and lacking polish. The basic idea is cool, but underdeveloped. You play two side-by-side views simultaneously, switching between them to take on the enemies. It’s a neat mechanic, but feels somwhat gimmicky. Further development is warranted, but I didn’t find myself playing this beyond a look-see.
Blessed is FsFreak’s fun 8-bit take on the vertical scroller. There isn’t anything new here, but the presentation and overall feel come off as pleasant. I don’t like the enemy design, though, and the gameflow isn’t quite there. The hippie fairy thing is cool, though.
The game’s website is so sweet that you need to visit it and download the game anyway.
Then there’s still Gravitron to check out. It looks very good, but I need to get back with it at a later date.