Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Game Review: Putty Squad

Now here comes a game that I have in my very small PS4 library, a game that can also be played on the PS3, and a game that many gamers would probably find it to be a tad bit crazy in presentation. Just looking at the artwork of this game would make you want to do a double take. "What the? Is that a carrot with sunglasses on? Why is that carrot holding guns?" Don't worry. The carrot isn't the main character in this game. The blue blob in the center of this picture is the main character, and we can call him "Putty", because that's what he is. Putty. 

So where does the "squad" part of the game kick in? I'll get to that in a moment.

So why did I choose to buy this game for the PS4 at a local GameStop store? Simply because of the fact that at the time, my options were limited. I had some games to choose from but many of them just weren't appealing to me. Some games weren't the right kind of genre for me while others had off-putting themes I knew I wouldn't get used to. Being the scavenger hunter that I am, I gave Putty Squad a long look and I soon became convinced to buy the game. I think I made a good decision.

Controls - 18 out of 20 Points

The controls of Putty Squad are basic, really basic. The controls that you have in this game are not what you would see in a big time PS4 game, but rather what you would normally see in a 2D side-scrolling bonanza like the old Super Mario Bros. games. For me this is just good because I don't get too technical about what kind of controls a game will have. As long as the controls work, then I will have no problem. Thankfully, and for the most part, I didn't experience that many problems playing Putty Squad. The blue putty blob I was controlling moved on command and did what I wanted it to do.

I will say that there was a recent time playing this game when I experienced something new, and not a good kind of new. I was in World 3 of the game and I was trying to get down from a platform, and I had just collected a few items that were scattered about. For whatever reason, I was stuck. I couldn't move. For the life of me, I couldn't figure out why this happened because as I was observing the TV screen, it looked like the blue putty was having a seizure of some sort, moving its feet but not going anywhere.

Having said this, though, I still give the game's controls a passing grade because that was the only time I experienced something like that. I love the concept behind the blue putty's gameplay mechanics because it's truly innovative and thought-provoking. As the blue putty, you can inflate yourself to float in the air, you can punch foes, you can fire missiles and throw bombs, and you can even hold up a shield to defend yourself. Oh yeah! Let's not forget that you can also hop into a pod and fly around to wherever you want to go. It's the zany attitude behind the implementation of the gameplay formula that makes the experience work for me.

Graphics - 18 out of 20 Points

There are many positive things to say about Putty Squad's graphics. The graphics in this game are bright and colorful and they stick out to the gamer in the right way. Putty Squad stays true to itself as being a zany cartoony adventure, and that's exactly how it presents itself with the visuals. The background art that you see in the levels are pleasant to look at, and whatever features are necessary to bring out the core features of a level, the developers of Putty Squad succeeded in doing so. 

I guess you could say that these graphics remind me of the times when I would watch cartoons on early Saturday mornings on TV. The graphics represent that slapstick kind of humor where the most random things can happen, similar to that of Wiley E. Coyote chasing The Roadrunner on Looney Tunes, and then something happens to the coyote, of course. Overall, the graphics were made out to look fun and that's all a gamer can ask for.

I have seen critics give this game bad scores for its graphics but I honestly believe they are way off and have no idea what they are talking about. 

Story - 8 out of 20 Points

I went back and forth with this score because playing this game, I knew this was a game that didn't take itself seriously at all. Putty Squad is the kind of game that features outlandish LOL caliber content, so I don't think it would be right to give the game's Story Mode a BIG FAT 0. However, there really isn't too much of a story to talk about when you dig into this game. The premise is basically this; You're a blue putty traveling from world to world trying to stop the feline forces of soldiers that are bent on... taking over, I guess? You have a guy doing work as a DJ to help you during levels, and you have all sorts of characters that normally inhabit these various worlds, just getting in the way of your journey. 

There really isn't much to build on story-wise aside from the comedic spins on the characters and the journey itself, which is called Marathon in the game's main menu. I can't say that a lack of story in this kind of game is bad, since it wasn't about something compelling anyway, but I can say that it would have been nice to develop the character of Putty a little bit and describe why he was going after these military cats to begin with. Nothing too detailed, but something noteworthy. That's all.

Music - 16 out of 20 Points

The music of Putty Squad was very catchy. The soundtracks are worth getting into if you just want to have fun and play around with the beats. The soundtracks complement the mood and feeling of the game very well. The music is obviously one of the strongest points of this game. While the soundtracks aren't innovative, they are refreshing to listen to. 

I don't think much thought needs to be put into describing the music of Putty Squad. It is what it is.

Replayability Factor - 17 out of 20 Points

The gameplay formula that is put on display here in Putty Squad is nothing revolutionary nor jaw-dropping, but that's okay. I didn't have high expectations for this game anyway. I found this game to be more than enjoyable enough to just pop into my PS4 and play. Does it have the Replayability Factor? Pretty much, yeah. If you're bored and you need to test your platforming skills with a quick playthrough of something, then games like Putty Squad would fit the mold. This is a game that you can easily get into, and a game that you can easily wind up spending considerable time playing. 
Putty Squad: A game that's just there...
Total Score - 80 out of 100 Points (3 Bonus Points)

Putty Squad appears to be one of the weirdest games I have reviewed so far because I can't quite get a pulse on the true quality of this game. I personally like this game. I believe that this is a highly playable and functional game, but I also know this is pretty much a niche platforming game. Not everyone will like platforming games, especially not the kind of platformers that are like this one. I believe that if you are looking for a long-lasting experience playing a game that will differ in design, Putty Squad may or may not be the game for you. I recommend that you at least try to play this game a few times to get a feel of it, and if you are not satisfied, then you have answered your own question as to whether or not you will like this game.

This game really is like putty in a way! You can mold it in any way that you see fit!

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