Platform Reviewed: PC Platforms Available: PC Publisher: Midnight City, Majesco Entertainment Developer: Tuesday Society Games Release Date: March 10, 2015 MSRP: USD $7.99 (Php 259.95)
Grapple is a puzzle-platformer developed by Tuesday Society. Available now on steam, Grapple is a solid platformer that requires great execution, preemptive thinking and quick decision making. That sounds like much but you’ll definitely need all that if you want to go through Grapple‘s numerous mind-numbing levels. A treat for masochists and puzzle lovers everywhere.
Grapple lets you play as a sentient black blob that is capable of creating grapple strings out of itself and is completely invulnerable to fall damage. Grapple‘s gameplay makes use of the blob’s abilities by grappling, swinging, climbing and jumping onto many platforms to reach the end of the level. The idea of the game is pretty simple, Reach from point A to point B. Grapple starts off easy with a couple of tutorial levels, teaching you the games mechanics like swinging and trajectory. It does increase in difficulty but the game doesn’t truly start until you’ve already beat a chunk of it. Then on, you’ll be introduced with more puzzle pieces like invisible walls and cannons that launch you into the air, and it gets crazier. Mixing more of the game’s mechanics, larger levels, more platforms and melding in what you’ve learned from previous levels. Grapple gets more and more exciting when it comes to level design.
Grapple‘s controls are very tight and responsive which is actually good for a platformer game that requires precise controls. You grapple with your mouse and you control movement through your keyboard. Grappling feels good and this is important since you’ll be doing this 90% of the entire game, hence the game’s title. Grapple‘s levels are huge and requires you to be aware of your surroundings. The camera is in a third-person view, you’ll be seeing your character and the area around it. But how the camera is presented, it is a tad bit too close to your character and moving the camera is a bit slow. You’ll sometimes encounter this as a problem; when your blob is zipping through the air and you’ll be looking for a platform to grapple into, but the camera is a bit too close and most of the time the platform ends up being in your blindside thus resulting into many, many deaths.
The platforms you’ll be jumping in onto are 3D shapes of different sizes and lengths. The design reminds you a bit of Tron or 80’s cyberpunk title screens. It is very unique but it does get repetitive after awhile. The platforms and other set pieces are color coded: Blue means safe, Red means death, etc. There are green Rubik’s cubes scattered around in most levels and these serve as your save points. The cubes will be your best friends in traversing the large and strenuous levels Grapple presents you with. The music in Grapple is this charming electronic soundtrack that varies in most levels. It’s pretty good overall but also reused quite often and it comes off a bit droning and generic.
Grapple has collectibles, in the shape of even smaller cubes scattered around its levels. Most of them are hidden from plain sight and are hard to collect. There are some special ones though. These unlock holograms of a cute stickman doing silly things, some of them references to pop culture. These are very fun to collect as they require you to think outside of the box. Greatly adds to the replay value.
Grapple overall is a very good game. Although the game can be very difficult later on, with its tight controls and simple graphics it is a very solid puzzle-platformer that I recommend to those who enjoy a gripping and solid platformer. A gripping puzzle adventure, Grapple doesn’t mind to challenge and anger players into oblivion. A solid game for a gooey protagonist.
This review was based on a review copy given by Tuesday Society.