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12:58 AM on 08.06.2008

A lot of games come with a learning curve. The game holds your hand and walks you through the basics, then once you've got them down introduces some more complexity and eventually once you've got it all figured out, turns up the difficulty slightly to keep things entertaining.

Eternity's Child does not have this.

Eternity's Child has a fucking learning WALL.

A wall which it'll grab you and slam you up against violently and repeatedly.

Nobody likes having a game make them its bitch, Eternity's Child does this.

Seriously, it's harder than Chad Concelmo at Sea World.

I felt different when I was playing Eternity's Child this morning, their was something familiar about its gameplay. It took me awhile to figure out what it was but then it hit me, Eternity's Child plays a lot like old retro platformers.

It provides you with transparent and unforgiving systems and mechanics which are at their core broken by today's standards. It reminded me alot of Abe's Odyssey, a game I had tried to get through recently, everything done well except for the gameplay. And in a more complimentary comparison, I'd liken it to the original Mario Bros. where you could hang onto a platform with a single-pixeled toe.

As with alot of retro games, Eternity's Child is not about getting good at the game mechanics, but rather finding loopholes and glitches that allow you to operate outside of them. Essentially playing it in a way it wasn't intended to be played, so you know, you can actually beat it.

So if you paid for the game and want to make it easier on yourself:

- I find standing still then jumping will get you farther than a running leap. True story. Stupid but true.
- Enemies can't shoot down through platforms, neither can you. But you can shoot up through platforms. Stand a platform beneath a turret and blast that son of a bitch.
- Those exploding metal heart-bats? Yeah don't shoot them, just run, you'd only be punishing yourself. Unless you can really get them from a distance, in which case the probability of a heart drop is worth it.
- The charged shot? Useless against anything but turrets. Often you can hide behind a platform, wall or some other barrier and guide the charged shot around and into the enemy.
- Bouncing springs? Time you jump right and you'll get some sort of crazy super-jump, go ahead, skip a few platforms, you deserve it.
- Gotta go up? Take a ride on a giant robot bird. Skip a few platforms as you fall from his clutches.
- Call up a buddy. Game gets a ton easier if one of you runs the mouse while the other uses the keyboard.

I've only played a little while, but from what I understand, the game's supposedly fairly buggy, I'm sure there's more exploitation to be had.

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