hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Waveform

Review: Waveform

5:00 PM on 03.20.2012 // Jordan Devore
  @DtoidJordan

I don't get to play enough games like Waveform.

For starters, it's an independent title that doesn't use 8- or 16-bit graphics and isn't painfully derivative which, unfortunately, describes much of the stuff I'm willing to shove in front of my eyeballs. Waveform knows what it wants to be and doesn't stray too far off course.

It's also not unlike something you'd expect from Bit.Trip series developer Gaijin Games. If that doesn't get your ears to perk up, I don't know what will.

Waveform (PC)
Developer: Eden Industries
Publisher: Eden Industries
Release: March 20, 2012
MSRP: $6.99

Although Waveform will likely click with you in a matter of seconds, it manages to remain mostly interesting throughout its 100+ levels. Using nothing more than a mouse, you'll tinker with a wave's amplitude and wavelength to avoid obstacles and pick up light orbs.

It's an uncomplicated premise, and the game is better off for it. While grasping the controls on a conceptual level isn't difficult at all, getting used to the system's intricacies is another matter entirely. Successfully coming into contact with these orbs and avoiding asteroids, aliens, mines, and more increasingly requires the player to have a mastery of subtle movements that often need to be made hastily.

Knowing what you need to do is only half of the battle; you've then got to apply that knowledge to specific situations on the fly (and curse at your monitor for being slightly off target).

The first stage begins with just the basics described above. As you progress to later stages, you'll come across new mechanics that are nicely spread across the entirety of Waveform, constantly building upon one another and the game's minimalistic foundation.

Prisms, for instance, can be used to change the color of orbs. This ends up being significant, since rings that account for your score multiplier are specific to one of three colors. Other elements that get introduced later on include mirrors your wave can bounce off of, clouds of gas that either speed you up or slow you down, and -- what else? -- portals.

As stated above, there are quite a few levels, a number of which could have been consolidated. You can also play through remixed versions of them after completing the main game, but this will likely be overkill for most players outside of leaderboard junkies -- as will the endless, randomly generated Deep Space missions. That said, Waveform was largely able to keep my attention until the end.

The music is an all-around great fit for the space theme, ranging from more relaxing ambient tracks to downright catchy tunes. Similarly, the art -- particularly when seen in motion -- was a step above what I was expecting from such a small number of people working on the game.

I particularly like that Waveform speeds up (i.e., gets more difficult) the better you're playing. Reaching the end of any given level usually doesn't take a whole lot of effort, but achieving a perfect rating, on the other hand, can be an exercise in frustration; there's always an orb or two that narrowly escapes.

Thankfully, perfection is not a requirement to unlock additional levels. Generally speaking, an okay-to-good performance most of the time will be sufficient. And, for those who think achievements are useless, they -- along with your individual level scores -- smartly help you gain access to gated-off courses.

With a game like Waveform, I have to wonder if it would have been better served with more gameplay hooks, or, alternatively, less content overall. I'm inclined to lean toward the latter suggestion as someone who significantly values quality over quantity.

Wave manipulation is a neat concept -- one I don't recall encountering in this form before -- but despite admirable attempts to introduce slight tweaks to the formula, it is eventually stretched to its limit. Even still, Waveform is a solid, highly polished game that's very much its own thing, and very much worth checking out.



THE VERDICT

8

Waveform - Reviewed by Jordan Devore
Charming - Not perfect, but it's easy to ignore the rough spots when faced with so many engaging design decisions and entertaining moments. A memorable game that's hard not to like and recommend to others.

See more reviews or the Destructoid score guide.

Jordan Devore, Managing Editor
 Follow Blog + disclosure DtoidJordan Tips
Jordan is a founding member of Destructoid and poster of seemingly random pictures. They are anything but random. Disclosure: I backed Double Fine Adventure and Awesomenauts: Starstorm on Kickst... more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our moderators, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Add your impressions

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

gajknight avatargajknight
Put down the deposit for my new car, will probably be able to pick it up on the weekend. Insurance is pretty good too, sub £1000 which is excellent. Kinda. My mum tried to reverse in 5th gear. She drives an automatic. What a noob. :P
Bardley avatarBardley
We are Diamond Dogs.
IDrawOnTape avatarIDrawOnTape
I get to work to stock and STAR WARS TOYS STAR WARS TOYS STREET DATE SEPT 4 OMG STAR WARS TOYS STAR WARS TOYS STREET DATE SEPT 4 STAR WARS TOYS STAR WARS TOYS STAR WARS TOYS STAR WARS TOYS STAR WARS TOYS STAR WARS TOYS STAR WARS TOYS WHY ISN'T IT SEPT 4?
Cosmonstropolis avatarCosmonstropolis
Still waiting by the mailbox. Tranq'd a jogger and stuffed them into a locker just for fun. I keep throwing rocks to get the attention of the neighbors and then hiding in tall grass. They look noticeably upset. Probably because I kept them up all night.
ChillyBilly avatarChillyBilly
Metal Gear or Mad Max? The choice is obvious. [IMG]http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b321/Felth/obvious%20choice.jpg~original[/IMG]
Jiraya avatarJiraya
Quickpostmortem My wife´s dog died yesterday . Rest in peace Diamond Dog . [img]http://i.imgur.com/uVT3HlF.jpg[/img] Here's to you, Malu Rest forever here in our hearts The last and final moment is yours That agony is your triumph
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Xbone journey continues! I thought I would like Dead Rising 3 well enough as a huge fan of 1/2, but I must say I find it's emphasis on hard drama laughable and the game fundamentally disingenuine. Guess I'm moving on to Forza Horizon 2.
TheDefenestrator avatarTheDefenestrator
I dig the feature in Until Dawn where, if you have the Playstation camera, it will record you briefly during jump scares for you to watch later. It's a really neat use of an underused peripheral. Too bad I'm dead inside and never react to them.
Shinta avatarShinta
[img]http://i.imgur.com/oZ7CQJa.jpg[/img]
nanashi avatarnanashi
Fallout Shelter: Impossible to Learn, Easy to Master.
Mike Wallace avatarMike Wallace
Not saying this is the case, but Kojima has gone on record as being a huge Mad Max: Fury Road fan. Konami decided to release MGSV on the same day as Mad Max TVG. They're trying piss on Kojima's lawn, man.
ooktar avatarooktar
Downloading Phantom Pain. ETA, 16 hours. Just in time for lunch tomorrow.
Mr Knives avatarMr Knives
OH WOW. Talk about a complete about face. After slogging through the horrid beginning and slow ass swap sequence this game picked up exponentially. So far, I'm enjoying the hell out of it now. All if forgiven. Thank you based Kojima.
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
Oh, joyful night. [youtube]https://youtu.be/6EfhAFA2yFE[/youtube]
techsupport avatartechsupport
After a summer of on-and-off casual play, I've finally reached lv. 34 in Destiny :')
nanashi avatarnanashi
also Fallout Shelter just made me utter this: "I have to get these pregnancies done.." life is trivial in this game!
Mr Knives avatarMr Knives
Let it be known that Metal Gear 2 for MXS has aged horribly and is no fun to play. In the midst of a MGS marathon, looks like I'm skipping ahead to MGS.
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
"Available: 31 August - This game will unlock in approximately 2 hours" HOLY SHIET! [youtube]https://youtu.be/9jK-NcRmVcw[/youtube]
nanashi avatarnanashi
-nudge nudge- hey Sony, discount Ys: I and II Chronicles and Ys: Seven on the PSP :D
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Just out of curiosity, does anybody here still play Mario Kart 8 at all frequently?
more quickposts


Contest!


destructoid's previous coverage:
Waveform


View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:



Please contact Crave Online, thanks!



Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -