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6Oct/090

XBLIG First Impression - Totem

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This is a puzzle game that's sorta/kinda like Bejeweled and Jewel Quest in the sense that you have to match things, but there's quite a bit more to it than just that. I had almost totally ignored this game to be honest, until I read the excellent review over at Indie Game Blog. So I went, downloaded the trial loved it and used what few MS Space Bucks I have left to snag it after playing through it. You essentially have a number of different totem poles, with figures falling on top of each from the top of the screen. You have to match them. They can be anywhere on the pole itself, so long as they're grouped together. And I've seen a few times where figures on other poles get destroyed too. I'm about halfway through the game, and so far I've seen elemental stuff that gets in the way a little bit making them harder to destroy. But thanks to the fact there is NO documentation of ANY kind in the game telling you how to play, I'm still figuring this stuff out as I go along. The only thing close to documentation there is is a screen with a controller telling you what buttons do what, and I have to give it credit. The control scheme is very intuitive once you get the hang of it.

I have to agree with the review on Indie Game Blog on a couple of things though, the music ... while it's good gets damned repetitive after a while. And the saving structure is utterly retarded. But so far the presentation for the game is impressive, the game plays great so long as you're willing to learn the intricacies to it. The boss battles are pretty satisfying and the challenge, even on Easy is pretty good. Give the trial a shot, but due to the complete lack of help anywhere in it on how to play it may prove to be very frustrating. But in the end, it's only 80 points and if you like puzzlers like this, it's definitely worth a shot from what I've played so far.

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