By Nathan Grayson on November 30th, 2012 at 11:00 am.
I do not enjoy the musical stylings of Skrillex. I fully acknowledge that some people do, and that’s awesome. Music is wonderful in all its various forms, so good for you. (On the other hand, I don’t particularly enjoy his hair stylings either, and if you do, you’re irredeemable.) At any rate, in spite of his probable sky palace held aloft by glorious golden chains tethered to god’s toenails, Skrillex now has something that could be considered an “independent videogame.” Here’s the weird thing, though: it’s kind of good. Created primarily by Jason Oda, Skrillex Quest is a fairly ambitious (at least, in terms of scope) effort that mashes up bits of old-school Zelda, Swords and Sworcery, and trippy glitch visuals. Oh, and a Skrillex song, naturally.
I played through the whole thing in about a half-hour or so, and it left me legitimately surprised. The gist is that its entire world exists inside an old game cartridge, and a few stray flecks of dust threaten to scramble the entire place into a patchwork jambalaya of jagged pixels. It’s up to you, then, to save the day and rescue a random princess and stab a giant floating Skrillex face to death for some reason.
No, Skrillex Quest doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but it doesn’t some pretty neat things along the way. The world, for instance, feels vast and riddled with secrets (I only found 38 percent of them, apparently), and its tendency to dissolve into chunky pixel stew creates quite an interesting look. Meanwhile, it doesn’t take long to get incredibly meta, with increasing “glitchiness” overtaking quest-givers, store-owners, and the like to create some bizarre, oddly chilling moments. Also, I managed to maneuver my silent protagonist so that he walked right up to the screen in a dungeon once, and – to my surprise – he immediately said, “Hello, player of this game. Please don’t let me die.”
I wouldn’t declare Skrillex Quest dark horse GOTY or anything ridiculous like that, but – for what it is – there’s an impressive deal of substance to the proceedings. Have a quick look around and see what you think. Oh, and maybe turn down your volume. No, further. Further. Actually, just unplug your speakers. There you go. That’s better.