I’ve talked about how difficult games have a growing market before. This includes people who play the older games that relied on the difficulty of games in order to keep the person playing. The time spent playing is lengthened from what would have been an hour or two long to go through is extended to days or weeks. That one medusa head that keeps knocking you off the stairs to a watery grave or that room with not one but two Hammer Joes is etched into the brains of the players, yet it never gives anyone a sense of hatred and frustration, but one of nostalgia when they recall how they finally were able to get past the obstacles on the path to victory.
8-Bit Boy is the attempt to recapture those feelings in a two to three hour journey. Well, it’ll only take a couple of hours if you aren’t interested in exploring the different paths, finding hidden secrets, and skillful enough to get past the fifth and final world. All five of the worlds are rather stylized and interesting, yet the length of each level begins to feel stale long before the boss battle signals the end. While going through the game I started to zone out and turned on autopilot, running past countless enemies and collecting more and more coins to make sure I don’t lose all my lives.
I found it rather strange that instead of punishing the player severely for losing all your lives, you simply restart at the beginning of the level with no points and only one life before having to restart the level. That’s something that wouldn’t really happen in the real old school hard games – where if you die you have to start at the beginning of the entire game. This slight adjustment to the formula of difficult games is just enough to make dying almost irrelevant, and you can just breeze past everything without having a care in the world what the points you collected were.
Everything felt as if it wasn’t truly dangerous. I wasn’t trying my hardest to make sure I made a jump correctly or got mad at the fact that I missed the same platform six times to fall to my death. ultimately I would only have a minute at the most to reach where I was previously. For the first four worlds of this game, I was able to coast on through with only 1 life. But, well, the game suddenly turned the difficulty up to 11 when I reached the final world.
In fact, I haven’t even gotten past the first level of the final world. I spent at least three hours trying to get past one spot but I could never do it, and never did because I had only one life and had to start from the beginning of the level. It was here that I found that enemies had to all be accounted for and carefully place all attention on my next step.
Aside from the difficulty in gameplay, the retro style has been done multiple times. But the only game that promised on feeling like it belonged in the 80’s was 8-Bit Boy. From the music to the aesthetics, it feels like it’s straight out of the older generation of gaming. As such, it’s much easier to play with a controller and not a keyboard and mouse, and even still the controls still feel a little loose.
In conclusion, this was a good game to kill a few hours. I didn’t expect any grandiose game that would challenge me, after all I got the game when it was on sale for only $1.00 – and it’s normally priced on Steam for $4.00. I found it to be a pleasant experience, but as always when I reached the point of utter frustration I stopped playing. But perhaps y’all are better and able to beat the game and find a little more enjoyment out of the fifth world. Maybe even find more secrets and beat my high score.
What do you guys think of this game? Is it worth $4.00? Tell me down in the comments!
Delivers what is promised; a retro-style platformer. Doesn't go above and beyond expectations