Saturday, February 16, 2013

Review Rewind: Bean's Quest

Back in 2011, a then unknown development team, Kumobious, hit the scene with their breakthrough title, Bean's Quest. Though, at the time, there were very few people willing to take a chance on it. See - Bean's Quest launched at the price of $2.99 and only contained 8 levels. But those who did take a chance were completely blown away by the production values, controls, physics, animations, graphics, pretty much everything about the game was incredibly impressive. But Kumobious stated that they were going to release more levels through updates. This was also a pretty big turn off for a lot of people because, as many of us have come to experience, games that don't release with all of the planned content very rarely see any sort of content in the future. But over the next year, content updates came and shot Bean's Quest up pretty much every single platformer lovers favorites list, finally ending up with 50 stages and 150 hardcore challenges to try and complete. Needless to say, we're incredibly happy about how Bean's Quest turned out, and chances are, this game will never leave our devices. If you have yet to pick up this gem of a game, missed out on it, or just recently got an iDevice and simply weren't around when Bean's Quest was more well-known, you should definitely pick this one up. 

**Note - This Review was written by Peter Toms after playing Version 3.0.1**

In 'Bean's Quest', a delightful platformer by Kumobius, you play as Emilio, who has been transformed into a Mexican Jumping Bean and his girlfriend and pets taken away by a dark wizard. The game was originally released in mid-July with just eight levels, but has since been continuously updated by the developers to now include fifty levels. The latest update added 23 new levels and finished the story. Bean's Quest mixes around between traditional platforming elements and a truly unique and creative execution.

Gameplay/Controls: 4.5/5
The controls are very simple in 'Bean's Quest': touch the left side of the screen to move left and the right side to go right. This is combined with the fact that you are constantly jumping, so you have to time your movements accordingly. The controls work flawlessly, though for those heavily accustomed to normal platformers, the jumping mechanic will take time to get used to. The gameplay and controls work perfectly together in creating a truly unique experience. Different gameplay elements, like enemies, giant wheel-like objects, and tiny blocks help you along the way, even causing some levels to feel like a mix between physics puzzlers and platformers. 'Bean's Quest' is a very fun and enjoyable game, bringing wildly new elements to a somewhat-standardized genre.

Graphics/Music: 4.5/5
 The graphics feel very fitting as well, with a nifty semi-pixelized look. It feels like the perfect blend between retro and modernized graphics. The game looks how you'd want it to by playing it: retro streaked with a cool, new-age flair to it. Different worlds have different looks, giving a nice change-of-pace between them.  The music feels as great as I could imagine, with a chiptune-like soundtrack mixed with the Spanish flair fitting of a Mexican Jumping Bean. Each world also has a separate music number. As a whole, 'Bean's Quest' presents itself in a method pleasing to both the eyes and ears.

Content/Variety: 5/5
 If I were reviewing this game before any updates, the game would definitely be lacking in this category. But thanks to major updates, it's grown in size to become a powerhouse in terms of content. Each level has three very difficult goals: collect all the gems, find your pet Axolotl, and try to do it within the par jump, bouncing as few times as possible. Each of these will take you several tries to achieve, adding a lot of replay value to the mix. Plus there are Game Center Leaderboards for each world as well as 33 achievements to collect. To complete the game alone will take awhile, but to accomplish all three goals for every level will last you a long time in terms of playing time. There's also a lot of variety, with five definedly different worlds and an epic boss battle finale. Worlds feel a lot different too, with different enemies, obstacles, and more in each world. As far as content and variety goes, 'Bean's Quest' brings you a lot of both, giving a game one could play for hours and not get bored with.

Overall: 4.5/5
 Grab your sombrero and start jumping, because this platformer is definitely one of the most creative takes on virtual controls. Hop to it and buy this wonderful gem.


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