Quantcast
Review: Waveform - Destructoid

DestructoidJapanatorTomopopFlixist



Waveform  



Review: Waveform


5:00 PM on 03.20.2012
Review: Waveform photo



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 - Waveform

Reviewed by Jordan Devore

8 /10
Great: Impressive efforts with a few noticeable problems holding it back. Won't astound everyone, but is worth your time and cash. Check out more reviews or the Destructoid score guide.








Comments not appearing? Anti-virus apps like Avast or some browser extensions can cause this.
Easy fix: Add   [*].disqus.com   to your software's white list. Tada! Happy comments time again.

Did you know? You can now get daily or weekly email notifications when humans reply to your comments.





timeline following:
Waveform



7:00 PM on 02.25.2012
Waveform is coming to Steam in March and it looks slick

While some games grow increasingly complex, it's nice to see independent titles such as Eden Industries' Waveform offer simple-to-grasp concepts. It's headed to Steam next month with a promise of some (most likely free) post...more




Indie

2:30 PM on 04.22.2014
Extrasolar does exoplanet exploration, but it is more than meets the eye

When I was talking to one of the developers of Extrasolar on the show floor at PAX East, I said something that I now regret. "This looks like something I would really like, but might not appeal to a ton of other people." He r...more



5:30 PM on 04.21.2014
Prodigy ventures to places most hybrid board/videogames shy away from

With board games continuing to increase in popularity, it is no surprise that there has been a lot of crossover between that space and videogames. Not only are a lot of board games being adapted or reimagined digitally, but s...more



2:15 PM on 04.21.2014
This game idea generator is gold

The talk of our office chat room this morning has undoubtedly been Orteil's Game Idea Generator -- a tool that's exactly what it sounds like but no less delightful. You should try it out. Some of my favorites so far: A simul...more



View all Indie






Back to Top




All content is yours to recycle through our Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing requiring attribution. Our communities are obsessed with videoGames, movies, anime, and toys.

Living the dream since March 16, 2006

Advertising on destructoid is available: Please contact them to learn more