11 February 2012

An Untitled Story

Gaming Genres: Platformer, Action-Adventure, Exploration, Action
Story Genres: Adventure, Fantasy
Graphical Styles: 2D, Hand-Drawn, Cartoon, Low Resolution
Platforms: Windows
Pricing Model: Free
Developer(s): Matt Thorson
Publisher(s): Matt Thorson
Initial Release Date: August 26, 2007
Website(s): Games Page
In An Untitled Story, you begin as an egg in your nest, and the rest is up to you to figure out. Fight 18 unique bosses, traverse a huge game world, and unravel a mysterious storyline. There are 5 different difficulty options for players of varying skill levels. Also included is a multiplayer capture-the-flag-style Heist mode. Hook up a USB gamepad before starting!

An Untitled Story is an epic adventure spanning a huge, unique, and well realized world. At its core it is  Metroid-like, with literally over 100 upgrades, secrets areas galore, and a ridiculous number of optional locations to explore.

Most predominate among the gameplay is the platforming. Platforming is really the entire game, and what little fighting there is is done in a platforming manner as well. This platforming is of varying difficulty, of course, and goes everywhere from extremely difficult to easy. if you are only interested in winning the game then you will encounter some challenge but it really only gets really difficult if you go seeking it. And boy does it get difficult, the platforming here is as hard as you will find anywhere else. Its main strength is that if you want to get many of the really tough upgrades then you have to beat many locations without taking any damage, but if you can do without said upgrade then it is a lot easier being able to absorb a few hits. Many of the upgrades directly effect your platforming, making you better at it and able to reach new areas because of this. Another prominent feature is all of the bosses, which do a great job of providing a change of pace and as progress markers.

It really is astounding how huge the world really is; Not many freeware games manage to make it to quite this size. Not only are there twenty four ability upgrades, 95 heath upgrades, and eighteen bosses as well as a house you can buy and decorate with objects/furniture including three retro arcade cabinets with payable games, a merchant you can buy upgrades from, a playable blackjack table, a vending machine to purchase costumes from, and twenty ghostly collectables but even huge swatches of the game world are secret and optional and of the (more or less) obvious sections you have some choice in which ones you attempt and do not need to beat them all. Time-wise it is approximately a ten hour game, with fifteen hours probably being closer to the truth for a 100% or thereabout playthrough.

In this world you play a bird, one of a whole society of birds. You actually start out as an egg and it is quite a while until you get to hatch, and this is something you might even be able to skip, if you really wanted. You are a special case among your brethren, one of only a few who are willing to venture past the city walls, seeking adventure. This world is quite well realized, with backstory not quite in abundance but there nonetheless. There is even a secret hidden library filled with a more complete and comprehensible history then you will find anywhere else. It is a interesting history, and well worth finding on your own.

The graphics are quite simple, of a hand-drawn style, and while not particularly nice looking they work great and do have character. They have a wide variety of different graphics, with each section of the game having its own completely unique style. The music is great in small doses, but all tracks repeat so rapidly that they can become more then tiring after only a short time. One thing that the game does very well is the menu system, which does a great job of keeping track of the upgrades and the world map.

An Untitled Story is a fantastic game and will provide hours of fun for platformer and Metroid-like fans. Personally, I absolutely loved the game.

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Hints/Tips/Walkthrough (+):
Indieness: Quintessentially Indie
Play?: Must Play

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