SIDEWAY: NEW YORK
Feeling flat? Well suck it up dearheart, for we doubt you’re as
pancakey as poor Nox. All he wanted to do was rescue his gal from a
rival graffitist, only to be slurped into a wall and have a
dimension stripped, becoming street art himself. King Robbo vs
Banksy’s got nothing on this shit.
Still, at least he remains perambulatory. Nox can run, jump and do
most everything another NY native, a certain plumber, can, but
within the confines of walls and other flat surfaces. It’s a fabbo
twist – quite literally - on 2D platformer schtick, for although Nox
is duo-dimensional, the world surrounding him remains steadfastly
Progress uncovers not only myriad collectibles (some bastardly
hidden – sussing the 2D-in-3D thang speedily is essential) but also
an increasingly bizarre array of life-eradicating threats. From the
stationary, such as spray-brambles, to movey, squirty-blah blobby
monsters and giant things that appear to have escaped from a mutant
Madden NFL remix, you’ve lots to fear. Especially as tagged
re-spawn points are often way back, meaning running over the same
old ground just like Pink Floyd repeatedly if you’re roughshod with
your running, jumping, kicking, sliding, grenading, upgrading,
Bionic Commandoing or boss fighting.
Music’s suitably hippety-hoppy, featuring tracks from Boston’s Mr
Lif. It can get repetitive if you’re long-hauling, but that they’re
cool choons helps. If it was 'Escape (The Pina Colada Song)',
'Afternoon Delight' or 'Kokomo' over and over we’d hunt down
everybody at Playbrains and ever-so-slowly torture them – by playing
those three shitballs ad infinitum (wearing industrial-strength
Controls are tight, although the camera can be pernickety. That’s
single player. Switch to co-op and it’s messtational – forget
friends, go solo to retain any semblance of sanity.
Ah, it’s ace kickin’ it old school again – and punchin’, and slidin’,
and jumpin’, and...