Feb 10, 2014
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.
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.