Braid, the beautiful and award-winning Xbox Live Arcade title released last year, has finally been released for the PC. I bought it, I played it, and I loved it.
The game seems like you typical platformer on the surface. You run, you jump, and you kill enemies by stomping them. However, the interesting part comes up in its unique gameplay element: time manipulation.
You go around the level collection puzzle pieces that you later use to assemble a full puzzle. There are 5 different worlds and each one has its own different way of playing with time. Some levels in different worlds might look similar, but the mechanics of each world make every puzzle unique and challenging.
And the game sure is challenging. Some puzzles look very difficult. It takes a lot of patience to solve them all. I’m not a huge fan of puzzles, but I have to admit that Braid’s mixture of challenge, simplicity and cleverness makes it worth tearing my brain apart. :D
Probably what I like most about Braid is its art style. It’s very paintery and reminds me a lot of the kind of paintings you see in an impressionist gallery at an art museum. The animations are done wonderfully, so you really have to see the game in play to admire its full artistic prowess. I also like that the game pays homage to other famous platformers like Donkey Kong and Super Mario Bros.
A really nice touch about the game is that there is no loading screen, no title screen, and no game selection screen. When you start the game, you take off immediately outside the door of the level where you left off. This is great for impatient gamers like me. ;)
My veredict: Beautiful game, tough a bit short and very difficult at times. Highly recommended if you love puzzles and have a bit of patience. I don’t generally like puzzle games, but I loved this game, and if you’re like me, maybe you’ll love it too!