Along Came a Spider – Xbox Indie Review

An XboxHornet review by WDesm

“Amusing physics platformer. Needs to be experienced!”

Along Came A Spider is a fun little platformer that plays with a few basic principles of physics. As a spider, your goal is to get back to your web by crawling and hopping through the increasingly-complex stages. Additionally, to really “win,” you must also collect the flies scattered throughout the stages, placed in, you guessed, ever increasingly-difficult spots to get to. Overall? The presentation is solid, the gameplay is forgiving and yet enjoyable, and the artistic flair suits the game’s fluid levels to a “T”.

Physics-based games always need to hold themselves to a higher standard, because there is more uncertainty in how the engine responds: the added complexity of responding to player input adds just another thing to go wrong. Along Came A Spider’s application of physics adds an elastic “bounce” to surfaces, but happily, the application is not so extreme that you need to worry about glitching through or past objects because of overcompensated recoil. I don’t want to go into too much specific detail about the gameplay, because I believe that the value of a good physics-based game is that the gameplay emerges as you understand how the materials act. Suffice it to say, the platforming is both simple to enjoy as you get from start to finish in each level, and challenging to perfect as you endeavor to collect the flies with minimal trouble, and I will encourage you to check the demo if you need to be convinced by the game’s mechanics.

The art style is smooth and uncluttered – if you’ve played a highly polished Flash game (or as a full title, a title such as World of Goo), you know what simple vector art and a lot of talent can accomplish, and this game is no exception to that rule.

There’s no multiplayer component to this game, so you’ll have to fly solo when you experience this light but solid platformer, but that doesn’t shake my impression of the game: As far as XBLIG platformers go, we can do a lot worse than exceedingly polished games such as this. Check it out!

Game Score 9/10

Download a free trial of the game here.


One Response

  1. First indie game I am really interested in. This is the first one that actually feels like it has somewhat of a story and would be pretty enjoyable for me and my girlfriend.

    Along came a spider has physics too! That makes the game a little more lifelike and strategic rather than game logic, hopefully they did a good job on it!

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