Naught 2 Review

Naught 2 Review

Feb 10, 2014

Blue Shadow Games hits us with a refreshed version of its atypical platformer in Naught 2

Calling Naught 2 a platformer probably does it at least a little bit of a disservice. The playing area looks and feels like a spelunker’s dream, with deep, sizable and ever-roaming caves. The darkly rendered paths are anything but flat or straight in the way they curve and twist around. Black and light grey (with judicious dashes of other colors) make up the motif of the game, and they do a good job of highlighting the motion. With silhouettes being the basic design paradigm, the game is able to be foreboding without spooky.naught1

Gameplay wise, the developer does a good job with eerie backstory, and the control mechanism can be selected from the option of either using virtual buttons or the accelerometer. Our protagonist, naught, is a cat-like being with upright mobility that, in his quest to escape the darkness, collects stuff and avoids dangerous things as he attempts to get from point A to point B.

Gravity, as a concept, is the backbone of the gameplay. the “ground” is a function of the accelerometer (if that is the control set used), in that rotating it causes Naught to treat the area closest to the ground as the source of the gravitational pull. It is pretty cool and strangely logical in practice, akin to watching how a wingless bug in a jar reacts to an inquisitive child flipping and rotating the jar. In the hands of a skilled player, obstacles become travelways.

As the leveled gameplay moves on, the ground structures become more intricate, as do the dangers. There are sliding and rotating bodies, lethal plants, bubbles, tentacles and more. Speed is exhilarating, but can be fatal. there are sections with a dearth of light, and the whole games comes together quite well.

It takes some of the better elements of the first iteration and improves on them. There is much of the same, but thankfully, it feels more refined, and the upfront pricing does help as well.

Naught Review

Naught Review

Jan 7, 2013

Naught is a very realistic physics-based game. The world literally gets turned upside down. The screen needs to spin in order for the character to move. Unlike most games where there’s a simulated gravity or effects, Naught truly uses gravity to move the character.

By tilting the Android device to the right the character will start to move in that direction. The reason being is that he is essentially following gravity. To slow the character down, the device needs to be tilted to the left. The character can also walk on ceilings by tilting the device 180° so the top of the screen is now at the bottom.

If this sounds like a little too much device spinning, other options for controls are available. Buttons can be used to control the character as well as using what they call drag controls. This is simply moving the screen by dragging the finger crossed it. This is the least responsive of the control options.

The goal of the game is pretty simple, reach the end of the level. Like many 2D scroller games, there is a set destination to be reached. Along the way there are items to be gathered. In this case, their diamonds and seeds. If all three diamonds are gathered, the level can be played in time trial mode. The seeds are used to create portals. The portals are essentially check points allowing a restart from that location is a character dies. Along the way, there are also seed activated doors.

While the Naught is simple in theory, the execution is surprisingly difficult. Getting used to the movement of the character will take a few levels to master. What it really comes down to is timing and paying attention to how far the screen is tilted. If the screen is tilted too far, the catlike character will either run or fall. If the screen is not tilted far enough, the little guy won’t run very fast and may miss an opening or moving platform.