May 31, 2009

Braid for Mac

Although I am more of a casual gamer, I have always been a fan of indie game over large studio productions. Mostly because generally they are short, to the point and can take risks to try things professional games do not. I have written here about a few in the past, as well as a few of my own, so I am always happy to find another new title that perks my interest.

Braid is a strange game that focuses on change through time and forgiveness, and accomplishes this in that fact that you can not die, if you are killed, the game will sit and wait for you to rewind. This removes the dangers that other platformer games use to add challenge, so you may be left asking what is left to challenge the player? Instead they game uses a (some what cliche) search for puzzle pieces that come together to form the story. However to get to the pieces you will need to use your time warping powers, think 2D platformer now thrust into a 4D world, even though the lack of a Z plane makes it more of a different kind of 3D then ever seen before. Using the different abilities each world allows you will have to deal with time forgiveness, exclusion, branches and placement. Braid wonderfully pulls off using these separately and in a mix to give the player a rather unique challenge, which if you like solving puzzles that requires thought from different angles you will really enjoy this.

The story of the game itself is unique, you have Tim who is on a quest to save the princess from a horrible monster. This may sound familiar to Super Mario Bros and it is hard to not see that a lot of the game takes concepts from classic platformers. However it goes far deeper then the base story if you only look at the surface. What is reality? If you could warp the time that drives the reality that we see, could you truly say what we are seeing is real? The ending of Braid pulls this off with fighting perfection, which may leave some players rather confused. Combine this with wonderfully music and lush water color artwork and you have an amazing game.

I have always been annoyed with games in how you want to try things, but it would take too long when failures result in restarting, Braid removes this and pretty much can be described as one of the few games that always runs in sandbox mode. Of course some of the puzzles, and especially the hidden stars would be impossible with out this. Still I had fun playing through this a few times, one due to me poking at the game files and breaking it. Braid is available on xbox, PC and Mac, so there are a few ways to get it, but if you have a mac, support mac games and grab the mac copy!

For those who have played the game and want more depth on the story check out this article.

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