Quickie Reviews is a super quick run down of a game I don’t have time to dedicate a full review to. That doesn’t mean I won’t come back to it later and drop a full ramble. Basically, if you want a review but don’t want to read 20 paragraphs, then these are for you!
If you have glanced at the indie scene at any point during the last decade, you will have surely noticed an abundant catalogue of 2D platformers. They are everywhere. Koloro looks to offer up a unique setting in an attempt to sway audiences into taking yet another plunge into the murky depths of this oversaturated genre. Does it succeed?
short answer? No. Long answer? Nope. Koloro really tries to convince you it is something special, but it unfortunately fails to deliver anything new, or interesting. The main thing Koloro has going for it is it’s presentation, audio and unique controls. Kora, the playable character, looks striking. Massive, a blazing inferno on her bonce, sat majestically atop her minimalist body, surrounded by a dream infested with spikes, enemies and death. Throw in some atmospheric music, and you have a game that looks, and sounds, great. Until you start moving that is. Once you do, you realise it’s all an elaborate ruse. Kora immediately transforms into a lifeless, characterless square. Instead of playing as a fiery maiden, you navigate through the dream as a bland piece of geometry. I was immediately disappointed, I have to admit.
Luckily Koloro manages to perform a bit better in the control department. Boasting a “one button” control scheme, Kora will move automatically. Pressing the button will cause her to bound gracefully through the air, ideally missing the instant death spikes. Jump off a wall, and you will gain height and change direction. Use these new found skills to solve puzzles, avoid brushing against spikes and fight bosses from time to time. It is a refreshingly simple take on the genre, and heavily pushes the concept of patience.
Speaking of patience, you will need a fair amount of it as Koloro is quite difficult. As you have not real control over your movement, timing is absolutely pivotal to successfully avoiding impalation, or at the very least, deadly laceration. As you become more proficient with the controls, the game will begin to throw spanners at you to keep you on your toes. Often times waiting is the best course of action, as rushing will quickly see you flirting with the retry button. Imagine Super Meat Boy mixed with an especially sadistic Runner.
What really holds Koloro back is the “been there, done that” stench that sticks to every fibre of its being. If you have played any of the games that inspired Koloro, then you have basically played Koloro. Sure, you have 300+ levels and two player co-op, but the challenges on offer here are nothing new. That is not to say they are implemented poorly, because they are not, but being a good imitation isn’t exactly something to write home about.
Koloro is not a bad game by any stretch of the imagination. It is just a game that exists in a genre that has explored all the ideas Koloro has to offer. A strikingly mixed presentation and unique controls are not enough to prevent Koloro from being forgotten as quickly as one forgets a dream.
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