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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

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Aquaria Reviewed
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Mac|Life recently posted a new review of Aquaria, Bit Blot's 2D sidescrolling underwater adventure game. Brought to the Mac by Ambrosia Software, the game allows player to take the role of Naija and work to unlock the secrets of her past while defeating or outwitting the various creatures encountered along the way. Mac|Life gave the game a score of 5 out of 5.

From the review:

Naija’s singing voice summons “the Verse,” which is sort of like the Force. By singing certain tunes, she can cast spells, move objects, and so on. Since you learn these songs over time, you’ll often backtrack when you realize you can now bust through previously inaccessible roadblocks. You’re allowed to drop markers on the game map as “notes to self,” but even then, it’s easy to get lost—zoom out on the map with your mouse’s scrollwheel, and you’ll see how huge this world really is.

As you keep exploring, enemies attack you. You start with just a Shield song and the ability to swim away. But eventually, you learn how to take on other forms, including an Energy form that lets you shoot fireballs at enemies, a Fish form to disguise yourself, and a Sun form that illuminates dark places. Some creatures come to your aid, from friendly jellyfish to sea horses and turtles you can ride.

The recipe system is robust—Naija collects ingredients and learns how to combine them into dozens of items. The finished concoctions regenerate her health or give her temporary abilities, adding another level of strategy and complexity to the game. While hunting for clues, solving puzzles, backtracky exploring, and culinary alchemy will keep your brain’s gears turning, and the occasional boss battles are downright tough, requiring an arcade ninja’s quick reflexes. Save points are scattered throughout—make good use of them, because you’ll die a lot—but we couldn’t help wishing for more.
Visit the link below to check out the full review.

Mac|Life: Aquaria Review
Ambrosia Software

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