Fez: A New Way of Gaming

A couple of months ago I came across a little chap with a bright red hat gracing my Xbox live screen. He looks kinda cute and fun so I thought sod it! I’ll follow him… (I’ve not gone completely mad by the way) So once I’d checked out the trailer and the price tag (800 Microsoft points) I thought sod it again! I’m going to give this a go! Now I should back track because I’d actually heard about the game from the very charming C418 on Twitter a couple of weeks earlier so maybe this was fate and meant to be… or just good marketing, either way I’d just clicked “purchase”

Before long I was greeted by the title screen and that was it! HOOKED! You need to understand from the off, this isn’t just another 2D platformer with retro graphics and kooky music… oh no! At first it very much seems like that but once you’re little dude finds his fez the whole world starts spinning… no it actually does, so now it’s a 3D, 2D platformer… erm ok that’s normal… what else?.. well the basic aim of the game is for Gomez (That’s his name!) to help a giant cube find a load of smaller cubes to make a bigger cube to stop the end of the cubic universe as we know it! Finding more and more of these little cubes unlocks more and more beautiful areas. It’s probably all based on the dark fantasies of Professor Rubik if you ask me!

What separates it from the other retro style indie games is the gameplay it’s self.  For a kickoff, Fez has it’s own language and numeral system which is A) necessary to be able to find all of the cubes B) completely bewildering at first and for most of the game. The method of obtaining the little cubes is mainly through puzzle solving but be aware these puzzles are not just simple “go get that colour key to stick it in this colour door” ones. These puzzles make full use of all you grey matter, from trying to solve 3D puzzles in a 2D world to using your mobile to scan QR codes to find secret messages! (Crazy I know!!).  Never before  have I come across a game that literally jumps out of the TV and has you scribbling on bits of paper to work things out, go hunting for you mobile down the back of the sofa… or even enrole in language courses (a bit much I know but hey I now speak Aramaic JK).

Once you find your first few cubes you will NOT be able to stop I guarantee it! Wave goodbye to your friends and Facebook/Twitter because until that big golden cube is back together you won’t even care if you’ve not washed for a week. But wait what’s that? there’s more?! Not only do you have one big normal cube to put back together there is also an “anti” cube to find and put together.  Not done yet there’s still more.  Once you’ve completed the game, and may I just point out that if you’ve done it without cheating you will definitely not have all the cube bits, that’s where the “new game +” mode comes in, don’t worry no spoilers :). Suffice to say for 800 points not only is it a bargain, I think it is actually theft, as a game of this quality in gameplay, originality, beauty and down right joyful fiendishness would easily retail at a higher price if you ask me!

A cube to call home

One other area I’ve not mentioned is the soundtrack for this game.  Done by Disasterpeace it is a joy to listen to and never gets boring or repetitive.  It reminds me of the good old days of Double Dragon and Legend of Zelda with the old 8-bit sound boards. Music in games these days is taking on a much more important role during development, and rightly so! I’m sure you all know the tune to Super Mario or Sonic but can you tell me the musical score to Metal Gear Solid?! Didn’t think so… I’m not saying these major games devs are putting crap music in their games, I’m sure the quality is brilliant! It’s just that for too long there’s been a lack of originality or innovation because of the relentless pursuit of visual beauty over substance.  But Disasterpeace has come up with some amazing tracks to marry with this absolute gem of a game, and the game is better for it.

So in summary GO AND BUY THIS GAME! Go now…. Go….stop reading!


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