noitu love 2: devolution

i’ve been playing noitu love 2 this weekend. the original noitu love bored me before crashing in the last stage; joakin sandberg has obviously learned a bit since then. i’m pretty sure he learned it making chalk, elements of which are in evidence here: level design focused around a single new mechanic per stage, the gradual teaching and layering of those mechanics, and mouse control. the mouse is the closest thing the pc has to a control pad (three obvious verbs that anyone who’s used a pc will be able to intuit) and i want more twitch games to take advantage of it.

where the game falls down is the bosses (disappointing, considering konjak’s obvious love for them), who often have often adhere to patterns of two or three attacks with huge but consistent damage areas and huge but consistent blind spots. which usually means that you take a lot of unavoidable damage the first time you fight a boss but can beat that boss taking next to no damage the next. which is disappointingly unbalanced.

but it is gorgeous! i said that konjak loves bosses: this is evident in the attention he puts into building and animating them, into staging their encounters to be every bit as grand and memorable as they are in his mind. each seam of this game glows with love for old mega drive action games, and playing it is a lot like i imaging sitting across a table from joakin sandberg shouting “do you remember that one game? yeah!!” would be.

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