Hands On Review: Clockwork
Well, I am stumped and that is okay because as gamers we tend to run into some snags and as a reviewer playing a different genre of titles it becomes a situation. In this particular situation, I am playing a new indie steampunk theme puzzle platformer called Clockwork. I will be honest that it is not my typical game of choice and that intrigued me. Yes, I was given a review code which is no surprise and now that is out of the way enjoy the review.
Clockwork, set in the great mechanical city of Watchtower, is a story about unlikely friends coming together to try to fix an imperfect world. The city’s mysterious past is questioned when Atto’s trusty pocket watch suddenly wakes up and introduces itself as Milli. Renewed with a sense of purpose, Atto and Milli must explore the city, control time and confront terrifying bosses, before it’s too late.
I can’t help but notice the relationship is similar to Master Chief and Cortana in a steampunk sense. In that being said the personality of the two is hilarious. Milli is a wise-cracking entity that believes she is superior in every aspect dealing with a primitive world vs. Atto who is just trying to get by day by day fixing other people. However, Atto doesn’t seem well liked among the other clunkers as I call them. Thankfully Milli might be the salvation he is looking for if they learn to get along during the journey.
This is your simple A to B side scrolled experience with the difficulty being within yourself figuring out how to utilize the time stamps of your clones properly. Be it with backtracking, resetting or as decoys for obstacles. That is up to you to find the proper course of action in using Milli’s abilities. There is also a switch where you can take over Milli herself to survey the area to plan your strategy accordingly. You can even resume time to set your own timing for certain obstacles.
This is a scenario of simplicity with complex being that the controls are quite simple with your jump button, left or right motion and the clock watch abilities from Milli.
Clockwork is one beautiful artistic video game hands down. Each level and characters are hand drawn which made into motion. I have to give the developers credit for bringing a painting to life. There is also a respect to the creepy style for many of the enemies, which one being the bird monster boss fight. That was an intense situation racing against it, until landing in Poisonville.
The voice acting is a bit on the cringe side where I am not sure if they are talking backwards or something, but I had to turn that audio down a bit. In that, I was playing non-stop even when some obstacles were frustrating because with some smooth controls I was captivated.
Sadly, I have come to a block dealing with the Poisonville boss fight area. I figured out the puzzle a bit, but I can’t progress because the time clones glitch. I had them stationed to pull the switch at a certain time so I can make a mad dash for the ladder before the enemy could grab me. In that, the clone made a pull gesture, but the switch did not move at all. I have restarted multiple times and it is still the same problem where the clones will not pull the switch. The worst part about this area is that you are racing against poison gas at the same time, so if you take to long you are dead anyway.
I have succeeded in passing it, but the same problem happened while going through the battle anyway. So be cautious of your clones.
Clockwork is an interesting title and it features a beautiful journey through amazing levels and amazing artist work. The levels are a bit quick where some fill like filler where you can pass through without incident while others give you an uber challenge. Luckily enough that gives you some breathing room to prepare for the mind trip some levels will give you. Timing is key and following the pattern of enemies can go your way at times. This is where the form of Milli comes in so you can project through the board freezing time to check out what you have to deal with and then resume time to see the pattern of some enemies. Besides that particular glitch, it is worth the buy with a unique steampunk style and an interesting passive puzzle system. Clockwork delivers for the indie game enthusiast.
As scores go, I give Clockwork 3.5 paws out of 5. The best part is you can acquire it on Steam on sale for $11.99 from its original price of $14.99 not bad at all honestly. I do hope you enjoyed this review and be sure to check back for more. Stay frosty gamers!