Lovely Planet from Quicktequila and Tiny Build Games is strange, wonderful, and one of the best games I’ve played this year. At first glance you won’t know what to expect when Lovely Planet starts. The catchy jazz soundtrack mixed with pastel colors makes you feel like you’ve stumbled into a new first-person view of a Katamari Damacy level. Almost immediately the game turns all your expectations around as you start traversing this strange world with your weapon.
“Oh, so it’s a first person shooter?”
Yes… and no. You need to get from point A to point B. Seems simple enough. You need to shoot things in order to make sure you have completed the level. Okay, so that’s another level of complexity. Still seems fine. Also, you want to make sure you complete the level under the posted time. Ok… Oh and you want to finish the level with 100% accuracy.
“So… not a first person shooter.”
The best way I can describe this game is that it’s like Trials the first person shooter. Get from Point A to Point B as fast as possible with no mistakes. This is one of the freshest ideas I have seen in a very long time. The graphics and soundtrack only add to Lovely Planet’s already unique gameplay and I can’t put my controller down.
Level design is something that is I’ve enjoyed in this game. You start out with really simple objectives and enemies and everything seems ok. Then they introduce some platforming, then some timed shots. It gets crazy very quickly. The next thing you know you are zooming through an insanely designed level twisting, turning, locking-on and shooting. The quickness in which you are ramped up is so fast that you don’t even realize it’s happened. Some levels are quite difficult and at times I have contemplated giving up on trying to get three stars.
The controls are amazing. Very simple and response controls react to your every move. Missing a shot because you tilted a stick is so frustrating but you have no one to blame but yourself. This game makes me wish I had an Xbox One Elite Controller because based on the number of times I have pressed ‘X’ to restart a level, I am going to need something to withstand my rage. Trust me, you’re going to be starting your levels an awful lot in this game. Much like any other objective based game you get this sense of pride and accomplishment when you finish a level and see those three stars show up.
Graphically the game does what it can to let you know that you don’t need realistic graphics to make a fun game. The simply shapes and limited color palette adds so much to the game that I don’t think I would have enjoyed this game nearly as much if the graphics were different. The character of the game is defined by its unique style and I couldn’t be happier about it.
As I mentioned before the soundtrack only adds more character to the game. The jazzy sounds seem to help relieve the stress of attempting your perfect run. Enemies make distinguishable noises to let you know if they’ve been hit off-screen. Level interactions all have different noises so after a while you’ll hear something and you know you need to look for it and shoot it very soon. In our world of Halo, Gears of War, Call of Duty and more Lovely Planet stands out as a first person shooter that will redefine what an FPS really is. If you’re looking for a wacky yet fun FPS you’ll want to check out tinyBuild’s new game Lovely Planet as soon as you can.