As you may remember, our last two reviews: the seriously flawed Binary Domain and the seriously good Warframe, have proven that merely having the same level of technology does not instantly make games equal. So for this week, let’s go a bit more retro. A good example of retro in my library would be BiT Evolution, I think.
BiT Evolution was developed by Major Games, for whom this is their first title. The game was uploaded to steam on the 9th of June, 2015, claiming itself as a platformer inspired by titles of the seventies-through-nineties.
Steam marks the game as Mostly Positive, though the reviewer count leaves much to be desired. It has escaped the vigilant eyes of Metacritic and no awards have been bestowed upon it- so either this game is really bad, or it somehow slipped under the radar for everyone that ever did anything.
The game only supports English, which is immensely unfortunate, and unfortunately for Linux Users, BiT evolution is only available on Windows and Mac OS X.
On Windows, it requires 1.2 GHz in terms of it’s CPU, 512 MB of Ram and 100 MB of storage space. On Mac OS X, however, it requires instead 2.4 GHz of CPU power, 1GB of RAM, and 100 MB of space, so those who indulge in Apple Tech should be wary of that.
The story is quite entertaining, though short: the Ball from PONG escapes the game and travels onward through gaming history towards the present.
Our avatar is the aforementioned Ball, who is referred to in cutscenes as BiT- hence the game’s title. BiT is a very standard silent player Avatar; he displays emotions in cutscenes, but never speaks, allowing us to fill in the blanks. Each Era of gaming history has it’s own character who is representative of the characters of that era. Additionally, there is a character called ‘Hex’, who represents the progression of Hex Code, but she is quite mysterious and we know little of her, aside from the fact that she is trapped in the code, but has made peace with this.
The game is a fairly simple platformer- running, jumping, utilising the environment, you get the gist. Get to the end of the level to pass it. Simple stuff.
The ‘HUD’, if you can call it that, features the number of Pixels you have collected thus far, which I will get back to later.
There are various power ups that, again, are representative of the sort found in that era of gaming.
The game’s difficulty curve is not the best at times, but it’s perfectly manageable.
The game does have one unique mechanic that makes it all the more enjoyable: it’s death mechanic. When BiT ‘dies’, he is instead transported into the code world, where everything behind the scenes goes on. If he dies here, he is returned to the start of the level or last checkpoint, but there are portals here back to the rendered world. This, as you can imagine, opens up the doors for plenty of puzzles and boss battles based around this ability, such as the coded world having a shorter, but more dangerous path through an area, giving the player lots of ways to complete the game.
The game’s progression, however, is quite lacklustre, each level holding ‘pixels’, which have no reward for collecting aside from one of the achievements with Steam, but that’s about it.
As said many times previously, each ‘world’ features a different design based on a different era of gaming history- the first world is based on the Atari era, for example. Each new world not only changes said world, but also changes BiT themselves as they are adapted for each new platform, which is awesome, as this is historically what happens to characters who cross platforms.
The music, despite being in an 8-bit style, is remarkably catchy. It fits like a glove.
The atmosphere of this game is all fun-and-games, very mario-esque.
This game… is honestly debatable, just as Steam said. I, personally, very much enjoyed myself, but this is very much a niche title. If you really like platformers and humor-driven titles, then check it out, you could have a great time. Otherwise, maybe avoid this one. Additionally, you should be aware that there have been error reports- I have not suffered from this, but the Internet says that they do happen. Anyway, I personally would say that this is a good game, but I acknowledge that not everyone would agree with me.
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