De Blob 2
Feel like the world just needs a new coat of paint? Fed up of games developers trying to use only one colour palette? Worry no more, my friend, as I have the game for you! Blue Tongue Entertainment have released the highly addictive de Blob 2, sequel to 2008′s critically acclaimed Wii title. Having recently splattered forth on to consoles near you, this lightly puzzled, 3D platformer will have you painting the town red, green and various other colours quicker than you could load up MS Paint.
The usual.. the hero has to save the world from an evil idiot…
Comrade Black is planning to rid the world of colour, leaving nothing more than monochrome shells in his wake, all in a fiendish plot to win the Prisma City elections. The good citizens (or Raydians) are powerless when white-washed and become mindless slaves, attacking all that is coloured and good. With no way to overpower the INKT corporation and its malevolent leader, it’s up to the Colour Underground to paint the world back and remind the public of who they once were. Enter, de Blob. A bizarre and misunderstood creature, de Blob is a large squidgy… blob. Capable of absorbing paint, he is able to leave a trail of bright colours on anything he touches, from trees to skyscrapers. Accompanied by his trusty robot Pinky (who doubles as a co-op character), it is up to him to colour in the entire world before it’s too late.
The game comprises of twelve levels which increase at a steady pace in both length and complexity. Whilst some things just need a lick of paint, other parts of the world will require something specific from your range of seven colours. This may involve mixing paints from the insect-like paintbots, or a splash around in a brightly coloured pool. The main obstacles to overcome, besides the hordes of INKT employees, are water, which renders you clear and therefore powerless, and black ink, which will leave you poisoned and gasping for colour. Jump in either and you’re going to need to find more paint, but various power-ups and moves such as the wall jump mean that manoeuvring around the levels requires no more than your usual set of platforming skills. With collectibles of many types strewn throughout the levels, an extra degree of skill can be required to find a suitable route, but the main missions are fairly straight forward.
Now, what’s the mission?
The missions are of a standardised form; colour in buildings, enter building of note, kill enemies and hit switches to transform. But the puzzle element of the game kept this fresh enough that repetition was not a problem. The variety in the levels helped to bury this too. The missions themselves are fairly short, and a time limit ticks until they’re complete. These time limits can sometimes be a concern, especially if you get distracting by your collectible hunt mid-level. However, this had been pre-empted. Once the missions are complete you can remain in the level to paint, find collectibles or complete a myriad of side missions. Only through completing every side mission can you get a top grade so prioritise whilst on the clock.
With the visuals leaping from muted greys to a veritable rainbow of bright and bold colours you’d be forgiven for thinking the sound might have been passed over with little attention. Luckily, you’d be wrong. A densely layered score is present throughout the game, with a relaxed feel that absorbs you into the game. Every time you paint or pick up an item there is a musical cue for it. Although subtle, this adds a rich layer to the game that makes the music a huge asset.
The controls for 3D platformers have always been a point of contention but de Blob 2 just seems to have it right. There are a fair amount of moves to learn but as long as you pay attention the controls are easy to manage and you’ll build your repertoire easily. Anti-gravity sections do seem a confusing in comparison to the rest of the game but once understood, they are fiddly at worst.
Not as kiddy-like as you would think
Whilst published by Syfy Kids, the game does appear to be aimed at a more experienced group of gamers. An easy mode option is available in the menu system and this is recommended for younger gamers as I found the main game, whilst generally relaxing, to have a few tricky moments.
If you’re looking for a platformer with a twist, then this is the game for you. Genuinely fun from start to finish, de Blob 2 is a gem. Whilst providing a baseline for regular players, there is enough to keep more seasoned gamers happy. The game may seem childish in some respects, you’d be a fool to pass it up on those pretences. There’s a reason why kids love colouring books, and now I’ve recaptured that glee. Stop shooting yet another alien horde and get painting. It’s a liberating feeling and you won’t be able to play this game without smiling.