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In Your Facebook: Outernauts Out Now

Grid-based asynchronous battles await in Insomnia’s first Facebook game, which is now available to play. I like every word in that sentence except ‘Facebook’, although I also dislike ‘first’ if it appears below one of my posts, orphaned from the rest of the English language. I didn’t get on with Resistance but Ratchet & Clank was a fun time and Outernauts’ character designs have more in common with that series. Nathan dubbed the game “space Pokemon” and that seems accurate, with alien creatures to capture, train and pit against one another. It looks quite decent, but takes the approach of having players pay or wait to take action, which means that now I’ve run out of energy I’ll probably forget to ever go back. Trailer and brief thoughts below.

When Jim wrote about Zynga earlier he had this to say:

Facebook could be an amazing platform for a game. There is nothing stopping that. There are even games worth playing, as we occasionally point out.

Outernauts is easy to understand, seems well designed and suits the sort of dip in and out multiplayer that games like Hero Academy do so well. It’s the sort of game that could well be worth your time if you fancy learning about its creatures and their powers, having a few battles on the go and breaking up a boring day at the office by dipping in occasionally. Obviously I don’t condone playing games or using Facebook while at work but of course I absolutely do.

The problem is, I can’t actually tell you whether it continues to be fun because I’d have to pay to get more fuel so I can capture more beasties or wait until my energy has replenished. It’s as if the game is telling me, “you’re probably too tired to carry on with all this, huh? Probably time for bed.”

I’m shaking my head frantically, “no way, Outernauts, I’d like to see a little more because you’re cute and a bit of a tactical sort. Let’s hang out.”

“No, it’s cool, you’re definitely tired right now. You’re slumping in your seat…”

“That’s just my terrible approach to posture!”

“…and you’ve got those bags under your eyes that you could carry your groceries in…”

“I ALWAYS have those!”

“…but I guess I could stick around for a while if you were to spot me some cash for a drink later?”

“Oh, screw you, Outernauts.”

“Alright. See you tomorrow.”

I doubt it. Outernauts might be a fun little game, looks like it really might be, but I don’t have the patience to find out.

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Adam Smith

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