SMAAASH! Capsized Crash Lands Today

By Quintin Smith on April 29th, 2011 at 10:52 am.

Uh-oh. He's about to become an as-tro-NOT.

F***! Holy s***! P************! I’ve just spotted over at the industrious (and freshly resdesigned!) IndieGames blog that gorgeous looking indie platformer Capsized is getting released on Steam in just ten hours. I’m also seeing now that as well as the campaign, it’s shipping with a collection of arcade modes- Co-op, Deathmatch, Survival, Time Trials and “Armless Fighting”, whatever that is. Two players sat side by side, controlling the game by mashing the keyboard with their faces? We can only hope. The launch trailer follows. Take a look! Take a look, and then pre-order.

Keep an eye out for the floating boss that sucks up the player’s energy blasts and then throws them back. Oof! It’s enough to make me annoyed that I’m going out tonight.

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55 Comments »

  1. Quintin Smith says:

    I’ve just noticed that I used the same header image that John did in his post earlier in the week, but zoomed in slightly. We should do another post when the game unlocks but zoomed in even more.

  2. mawna says:

    Fantastic logo, I was wondering what an alien trap is.

  3. fiftharm says:

    Ooooh.
    Does anyone else remember Todd’s Adventures in Slime World for the Atari Lynx?

    • Colthor says:

      @fiftharm:
      Does anybody remember the Atari Lynx? ¬_¬

    • Red_Avatar says:

      My mother’s second husband was a truck driver and for a year or two, he was driving discarded stuff from a department store to the garbage dump. Before he’d do so, he’d always dig through it to see if anything good was thrown out and there often was. A Lynx console was one of them – there were two lines across the screen but it worked perfectly otherwise, and came with the brilliant California Games (the music still gives me shivers, and the BMX mode rocked – looked way better than the Gameboy I had just received at the time, as well). I wasn’t allowed to get any games for it, though.

      We also received Hero’s Quest without a manual, the deluxe version of Monopoly with a small tear in the box, Yahtzee deluxe with missing pencil, etc. – one time, he brought home 3 big garbage bags of soda cans: Coca Cola, Fanta, Sprite and a sports drink from the same company whose name I forgot. They were all dented and sticky – so we often spent a few hours in the shed, rincing them off – but we had hundreds of them to drink so no complaints! Aah good times (among many bad ones at the time).

  4. James G says:

    Been looking forward to this for a while, but need to clear a bit of my backlog first. If it ends up going on sale before I’ve finished a few more games though, I’ll probably end up getting it then.

  5. mbp says:

    That looks completely beautiful but the fact that it is a platform game worries me. A lot of platform games these days seem to be designed by sadists of a certain age who long for a return to the days of Nintendo Hard.

    • Mattressi says:

      Yeah, this game looks fun, but after VVVVV I’m hesitant to play a platformer again. I mean, I was good enough at Trine (finished it on Very Hard, then got bored) and thought it was fun, yet challenging, but VVVVV was just tear-your-eyes-out frustrating. I don’t know how many times I tried to control a fast-flying PC up and around spikey walls and barely nicked them, forcing me to restart -.-

      Hopefully this game is more of a Trine-type platformer than an insanely difficult (coupled with highly frustrating due to spaced out save points), unrewarding platformer like VVVVV. Does anyone know if they’re going to release a demo?

    • trjp says:

      err – you make it sound like Trine (easy peasy) and VVVVV (NAILS NAILS hard) are the only platform games ever released!?

    • Mattressi says:

      Well, there are certainly others which I’ve enjoyed as well, but these were the two most recent that I’ve played (skipped Super Meat Boy because it looked really difficult) and seem like the two best for comparison (one, being fun, but challenging occasionally, the other being frustrating). Would you like me to talk about other platformers as well? Make a list for you? A giant essay comparing various platformers?

    • Mattressi says:

      Well, there are certainly others which I’ve enjoyed as well, but these were the two most recent that I’ve played (skipped Super Meat Boy because it looked really difficult) and seem like the two best for comparison (one, being fun, but challenging occasionally, the other being frustrating). Would you like me to talk about other platformers as well? Make a list for you? An essay comparing various platformers?

    • Dominic White says:

      It’s a pretty easy game. It’s possible to screw up pretty easily and die quickly if you land in the wrong place, but the game practically drowns you in extra lives which respawn you straight back into the action. Even Hard mode isn’t much harder – you just take a little more damage, and enemies take a little less. See my full thoughts below.

    • Wulf says:

      I’m baffled by finding VVVVVV hard, though. I think it might just be that you need time to reacquaint yourself with 2D platformers. The reason being is that games that others have thought of as easy I’ve had no end of trouble with due to having awful sight, but I found VVVVVV fairly easy, even getting the gems wasn’t that hard at all. So… I suppose that’s going to differ from person to person. The only part of VVVVVV that I found memorably hard was Edge Games. And that’s it.

    • bwion says:

      VVVVVV is one of the very few games I have actually ragequit and never gone back to.

      (It was that goddamn escort mission section. Some things cannot be forgiven.)

      I will fully admit to being terrible at platformers, though.

    • Thants says:

      VVVVVV had spaced out save points? I can’t think of many games with closer save points.

  6. GoldenPants says:

    Am I the only one who isn’t seeing any sort of price or way to pre-order on steam?

  7. BarneyL says:

    The art and underwater theme has a certain Aquaria feel to it.

  8. Wilson says:

    That looks interesting. Will there be a demo do we know?

    • MadTinkerer says:

      This fact has already been mentioned by RPS a few times. The first Capsized article here was like “OMG! They’re remaking Exile! w00t!” and then I read up on Exile and I understand the excitement. :)

      I missed out on Exile myself, having never owned a BBC Micro or a microcomputer of that era, but I am a big fan of the exploration-platformer genre.

    • Dominic White says:

      The feel of the movement, the bouncy physics and the setting are very reminiscent of Exile. Nothing else really is, though – it has more in common with Abuse than anything, although not as good.

    • Soon says:

      There’s always: The Nameless. Which would have almost certainly come up in other Capsized threads.

  9. Balm says:

    Why should i be interested if it’s not metroid-ish?
    Looks like a horrible waste of opportunity.

    • Wulf says:

      Turrican wasn’t Metroid-ish and was all the better for it. Yes, I preferred Turrican to early Metroid. I’m a heretic.

      Metroid didn’t come into its own for me until Metroid Prime, and Metroid Fusion on the GBA, those were the games that defined it for me, but interestingly Fusion was Turrican-ish in that it had distinct levels. You could travel back and forth between them, but they were still very distinctly, and very clearly levels. They were even numbered. :p VVVVVV is also sort of more like Turrican than Metroid too, interestingly, now that I think about it.

      Right, that’s enough of that.

  10. MD says:

    P************!

  11. MadTinkerer says:

    Sweet! My brother and I just finished the Portal 2 co-op content, and now this comes out right in time for the weekend!

  12. Tei says:

    This is everything I wanted Aquaria to be, but Aquaria was to girly to give me. Wellcome home, game :D

    • Dominic White says:

      Once you get about 2-3 hours in Aquaria, ‘girly’ goes right out the window as you get into an almighty magical battle with NotDagon and it escalates from there.

    • jamesgecko says:

      Yeah. Aquaria had just the right the right level of female protagonist, beautiful scenery, and bosses so hard that they could have come right from Capcom. I remember being quite surprised and relieved when a particularly strong boss threw me out a skylight, providing an opportunity to escape the fight and rethink things before attacking again.

  13. Jonathan says:

    The music, people, the music!

  14. Dominic White says:

    I got a review copy of this at the start of the week, and have played it through 1.5x times and given each of the extra modes a fair shake, too.

    My review will be posted on DIYGamer.com later today, but in the meantime, I’d like to suggest people skip on preordering this. It’s not actively *bad*, but it could be a lot better. There’s a lot of little, silly things that this game gets wrong. A couple of patches and revisions could improve it a lot, so it could be rescued.

    As mentioned, the soundtrack is amazing. It’s also completely mismatched to the game. It just plays the full Solar Fields album in the background, not even changing track between levels, and it’s all relaxed, ambient vibes and mellow electronica. This is completely at odds with the gameplay, which is much closer to Abuse than Exile. It’s a pure linear platform shooter – in some of the later levels (it’s around ~2 hours long, maybe) it opens up a little, but that’s about it.

    It also has the weakest-sounding rocket launcher ever. I know it’s meant to be a plasma weapon, but I’ve passed gas that sounds more destructive and superheated than that.

    I’ll be holding off on posting my review until I’ve had a look at the version that finally launches, but I doubt much will have changed.

  15. Wulf says:

    Your words worry me, Dominic. I’m tempted to buy this because I think I’d enjoy the environments and music. You know me, I’m a very visual person, an exemplar thereof, so the artistic approach of a game is important to me. This game is the sort of game I just want to get into and look at, much like Darkspore which engendered the same feelings in me, because it was all very strange and wonderful.

    I loved Aquaria for much the same reason, it must be noted, very much the same reason. I’m going to be a heretic here too and say that I really disliked the mechanics of Aquaria, I preferred how Ecco handled that kind of setting by miles, but the intriguing setting and story kept me going until the end. I know that many people don’t feel that way about Aquaria, but I kept comparing to Ecco in my head, and some of it just felt like it was being awkward for the sake of being awkward, just to elongate the game. Padding.

    I did like Aquaria though, and I have some fantastic memories from it, but I’m not sure whether I want to keep exposing myself to games which are just too awkward to really have fun with because this is a game I don’t want to end up disliking. I’d rather just watch the trailers for now if the gameplay is really that annoying, and then pick it up later once it’s been patched.

    So, Dominic, what would you recommend? Grab it now because I’d be able to look past its flaws (I did like Turrican, so it not being Exile isn’t the most massive deal to me), or leave it until it’s had a few patches?

  16. Dominic White says:

    Publshed my review:
    http://www.diygamer.com/2011/04/capsized_review/

    For the record, I have nothing against a linear game. I’m a huge fan of the Turrican series, and the fan-made sequel, Hurrican, is probably the best of the lot. I don’t consider it being a linear game to be a bad thing. It’s that it’s a very short, kinda monotone linear game with a lot of balance and immersion issues.

    • Wulf says:

      Hurrican was amazing!

      Hm, okay. I’ll go read you review and make my decision, then.

    • lokimotive says:

      I just bought it (before I noticed a demo), and would have to agree with Dominic for the most part. The controls are a bit sticky, and the gameplay isn’t anything to write home about. It’s largely disappointing because it seems like it really could’ve been a lot better.

      I’m not sure why the trailer gave the impression that it was a Metroidian experience, but you can’t really fault it for not being one. You can however fault it for being rather rough around the edges for what it is.

      It’s really too bad, because the soundtrack is rather gorgeous and the art is fantastic. Unfortunately both aren’t particularly well integrated. The art just sort of hangs around like cutouts and the music is just there in the background.

    • Dominic White says:

      Yeah, I didn’t want to give it a negative review, because it’s not actually a *bad* game, but it could have been far, far better. The game gives you a brief glimpse of what it could be during levels 9-11, but then it’s back to an awkwardly implemented boss fight in level 12 and then it just ends.

    • lokimotive says:

      You know, after playing it again, I just realized one of the major issues in the presentation, the almost complete lack of animation. You touched on this in your review, noting the awkwardness of the larger enemies, but I think it’s a larger problem. It’s almost as if the characters are all just cutout dolls with grommet joints. If the art was of lesser quality this might be okay, but because it’s generally good looking it just feels awkward. Even the menus are fairly static; the only “animation” they have is cross fading.

    • RobF says:

      Mainly in agreement so far. I’m only a couple of levels in and not really feeling like pushing forward any further. I suspect I probably won’t unless boredom strikes hard tomorrow.

      It’s a niggly thing though as it’s not one particular thing that makes it not-quite-work, it’s this sort of build up of niggles till you feel all niggled out in a nigglesplosion. The lack of animation, the lack of atmospheric sound, the lack of feedback, the videogame things, the lack of build up to your abilities, the lack of purpose driving you, everything in the world just seems to be there for no purpose. And the world itself doesn’t feel like a pleasure to move around in, it’s all so unsatisfying. Couple the lack of satisfaction from deedling around with enemies that are invariably splutted down every two steps and often barely visible or even just sitting there behind the scenery and mmmf fnnng gnnnnn.

      It’s not beyond salvation but it needs all this stuff, all these ideas bringing together properly and perhaps, y’know, a month or so more in gestation to sort the movement out a tad and make it feel good to move around the world and even allowing for short form levels, not making each stage feel like “here’s some stuff we’ve got in the editor, there, we’ve put it on the screen now. TA DA!”.

      Nothing, really, feels even remotely together in it. It’s just stuff. That’s there. In a game. With some music playing over it like someone, somewhere is having an astral ambient party on a neighbouring planet and it’s really fucking loud. So loud, you can hear it over on this planet you’re on loud and clear and you’d really like them to shut up.

      It can be better and I don’t think it needs massive leaps to sort most things, with the exception of the level design, natch. And y’know, I hope it will be because there’s promise, albeit unfulfilled right now, somewhere amongst the rubble.

    • Dominic White says:

      If you haven’t yet hit levels 5-8… it’ll crush your will to continue. The review took a day longer than planned due to those being a tedious grind. Now that I think about it, my review might have been a little more forgiving than it should have been. I feel really bad about being so hard on a tiny indie studios first commercial release, but… yeah, Rob is right on the money here.

  17. Kingmarzo says:

    I’m liking the single player but I cant seem to find any co-op? Also no 1920×1200 :(

  18. MD says:

    nggghh, I really want to give this a chance, but the controls feel horrible to me. Mouse lag is something I just can’t push through. It’s even laggy in the menu, so unless I’m getting some sort of bug I can only assume it’s a design decision. Such a waste! Precision and responsiveness are the best things about the mouse as a controller.

  19. Wulf says:

    Well, I’ve been playing it, and the most stand out thing for me is one thing that Dominic mentioned.

    “FFF… where’d it go?! Where’d it go?! ARGH! Where’s it attacking me from? How many bullets to I have to waste shooting grass???”

    On one hand, this provides for an interestingly awesome Aliens-like experience, but on the other hand, it doesn’t provide for a good game experience, because I’m constantly trying to shoot the deadly little things in the undergrowth. I do have a solution to this, though.

    The game does this abstract thing where you’re actually supposed to be seeing it from inside the astronaut’s helmet, despite it not being a first person shooter. You see cracks and blood on the screen the more hurt you get. And at one point, the cutscenes showed that the helmet was basically a giant TV screen whenever it wanted to be.

    So why not have a HUD? Put a red ring around threats and/or make them glow a little. Then just call it a reality augmentation thing that the helmet is doing, it’s tracking life signs Star Trek sign and displaying them for the astronaut to see. It’d fit with the rest of the game and it’d work.

    This way I wouldn’t be…

    “ARGH MY LEGS. I don’t know where you are!!! How much health do I have left?!? FFFF. I’m going to spaz out with my gravity ram, now. AND BOUNCE EVERYWHERE. AAAIIIEEEE.”

    It’s amusing but not all of that fun to feel so completely out of control, and the only reason that happens is because the ground isn’t safe, but sometimes it’s incredibly hard to see where it isn’t safe.

  20. Atic Atac says:

    I am deeply disapointed in this. I love supporting indies but there is no game in there and I regret my purchase. It’s just a frustrating experience and I would’ve loved if they had gone the Exile, Aquaria route of metroidvania and real exploration. It’s a totally wasted opportunity.

  21. caljohnston says:

    I’m going to have to be the dissenting voice here and say I enjoyed it. I had no problem seeing enemies and I thought the mechanics were well done and satisfying – it had just enough toys and varied enemies to keep things interesting, and the difficulty was just right. It was too short and the music was too loud by default, but that’s about it. I’ve been waiting for an Abuse sequel for years and this is the best that’s come my way so far.

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