Humble Indie Bundle 9 ReviewGuest_Jim_* - September 17, 2013
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Eets Munchies Beta Review:
Before delving into the gameplay experience of Eets Munchies, I want to make a comment or two on what a beta is. Generally speaking they are a completed piece of software that lacks polish, so bugs, memory leaks, and such may be present. All major features should be present at this point in development though, unless special circumstances prevent some from being implemented. Basically what that means is you cannot expect a beta to run perfectly, but it should be very representative of the finished product.
Have you ever played Lemmings? That is not what Eets Munchies is, but it is a good starting point. Eets is a character that wants to eat cake, and any other food he finds along the way. Sometimes he cannot reach the cake, or other food, directly, so you have to help him by triggering already placed objects, or placing them yourself. These objects can be planks, whales that can pull in and launch out Eets and other entities, as well as bombs and special foods, to change Eets' temperament.
As you can probably guess, Eets Munchies would be considered a 2D puzzle game. The gameplay is somewhat engaging, as you have to pay attention to what is happening, and sometimes trigger an event at the right time. Helping your timing is the ability to change the game speed, slowing it down or speeding it up. If you mess up, a quick press of the Stop button or the spacebar will restore everything to how you just had it.
If you are stuck on a puzzle, there is also a hint key to show you where to place an object. There is also the tip that comes up while a level is loading: Don't be afraid to press 'GO' just to see what happens! One issue with that tip, in my opinion, is that you have to have placed all of the items available to you before you can press go. Sometimes I would like to see how Eets is going to behave without anything placed, so I can decide where items are needed, but the only way I can do that is to place somewhere he will not reach.
A very nice feature to see is a puzzle maker, where you can build your own puzzles to challenge your friends with. Sadly it appears the sharing functionality for user-designed puzzles has not been implemented yet, though you may be able to manually share the custom-level files. Such a limitation is not unexpected for a beta as it may require implementing external resources to enable. The puzzle maker does seem to be fully functional otherwise though.
The graphics are cartoonish, as is the music, but it all fits with the gameplay. After all, it is a character named Eets going after cake. Something else that is likely a causality of beta development is the lack of graphics settings. There are no options at all, even to change the window size.
Personally I hope we see this game come to touchscreen devices in the future. It does work well on a desktop, but the interface design and gameplay seem perfect for a smartphone game to play while commuting to work.
If this were a finished and complete game, my recommendation would not be to purchase the bundle just for this game. It is enjoyable, so if you get the bundle you should try it out, but I do not feel it necessarily has the depth needed for such a recommendation. (If a mobile version were also included in the bundle though, that would be a different story.) As it is a beta though, you may wish to get it, just to have the experience of being a beta tester and reporting bugs or making other suggestions. Also you may want to support the developers' ongoing efforts with a purchase. Those decisions, only you can make.