|Game: Erwin’s Timewarp
Genre: Adventure, Indie, Strategy
Release Date: Sep 21, 2015
Platform: PC / Windows 7
Overall rating: 4/10
Level/Puzzle Design: 3/10
Replay Value: 1/10 (at current state)
Erwin’s Timewarp is an adventure game. You play as the pet dog of some scientist who built a time machine and sent you to the past, and you’re tasked with finding various pieces of this machine in order to return to the present.
Starting the game you’re able to put it in various resolutions of window mode, and you can also choose to play at full screen; this is something I usually really appreciate as I don’t always like to play certain games in full screen. However, there’s little else in the form of proper menu and options. The only sounds to be found in the game at its current stage were also only in this menu, and unfortunately, the music was completely awful to me. I could not click out of the menu fast enough.
Visually the game is kind of cartoony. It’s relatively good looking and the textures are nice, as well as the details on the areas; for an indie unity game in 3D/top-down/isometric view it ran surprisingly well on my computer, so kudos to the dev for that accomplishment. I usually have a lot of optimization issues with indie games on unity.
As I mentioned before, there’s little in the way of sounds or music outside the menu, and that is almost a blessing considering my dislike for the meny music.
You’re also tossed into the game with little in the form of tutorial, explanation, or back story. In fact you’re only told a couple times about what’s going on and what you’re supposed to do and find. If you didn’t read the description on the steam page, you’d have no idea what you’re supposed to do until you encounter that alien – which btw, I’m still wondering why there’s an alien there.
The puzzles are fairly easy to follow on what you need to get in order to do what, but the way of interacting with things is a bit uncomfortable. Sometimes objects will highlight but not pop up hints, the icons offered as menu aren’t clear on what they do until you click them and find out, and they won’t appear until you’re in some particular range and angle from the item. Still, the rest of the controls (mostly movement wise) are fairly good despite this.
What makes the game a bit harder is that you have to spend quite a bit of time trying to figure out what to do at the start, and you CAN die (and you can save, too, so be sure to save): some characters will hurt you, and you must also keep yourself fed through the game, which I guess is an interesting twist for an adventure/puzzle game, but frankly I’m still unsure if it works.
The character animations for the dog and companions are fairly good, but the human animations leave much to be desired. There were also some bugs in which, for instance, you’d get stuck against certain things.
All in all it seems like an ok game, and I can see some potential in it which is why I would recommend to keep a watch on it if it sounds interesting; but it really needs a proper introduction and a brief tutorial. I understand Early Access is expected to not be completely functional, but there’s “we’re still testing out things” and then there’s “this shouldn’t really be open for sale and/or the public as a whole yet”.
If you like adventure games and want to support the dev, I’d recommend it, it’s an ok game with what it has so far. I can see potential in it, but currently it’s not something I’d recommend to just about everyone.