With Clobbr’s imminent release on Apple’s App Store, I managed to get a review copy from Czarcade, as I felt this lovely mobile game from a fellow indie studio would definitely be worth a look. The trailer looked quirky, and the screenshots certainly looked great in the time I’ve been following Czarcade on Twitter, so I had to jump head first into Clobbr, and bathe in this fellow indie’s beautifully polished game.
As you start Clobbr, you’re introduced to your three main protagonists that will stay with you throughout the duration of the main 5 worlds. These are Clobbr (the blue gentleman at the top of the screen), the three mice, and the orange kitty. The main characters have a Tom & Jerry vibe going on, with each level pitting them in a similar situation: the kitty never learning from it’s mistakes, and Clobbr himself coming to the rescue of the poor defenceless mice. These simple characters are your back story as to why Clobbr needs to continue solving the puzzles, which is a well thought out and lovely trio of personalities that ensure you aren’t bored by just solving mazes on every level, giving personality to an otherwise simple representation of a puzzle game.
The game mechanics are pretty simple, with each level consisting of a different maze that must be moved around to provide a rock a chance to knock the cat out. The maze consists of different blocks, some of these are straightforward, like the arrows which just make the boulder go in the diffraction they face, where as others really change the dynamic of the mechanics, with mousetraps propelling the boulder to the end of the stage. It’s definitely a game that stays true to itself, with simple mechanics that get progressively harder as you make your way through the 100 levels on offer.
Each level must be completed within 20 seconds, which adds a nice sense of urgency to everything you’re doing, making some levels extremely difficult as you trace exactly where your boulder will go along the path you have created for it. If you complete the level sooner and find it easy, you can always click the log at the top of the screen to get Clobbr to start the boulder moving sooner. This’ll give you additional points, which may not be worth much right now (there are no leaderboards at this time), but could become appealing in future updates (imagine trying to beat all your friends scores in a fashion not far from Cut The Rope, it’d be pretty addictive). The 20 second time limit also helps the game become a perfect travelling companion, meaning that no matter where you’re playing on your phone or tablet (the bus, taxi, train, waiting at the doctors etc.) you won’t go long between levels so you aren’t distracted for hours on end.
The music is cute and catchy, so much so that I caught a few members of my family humming it around the house whilst they went about their day. Unfortunately, many users may play all their games on silent, which’ll be a shame for the hard work of Nathan, who has put together a good track. But for those of you who do play their games with the sound effects on, you’ll be in for a treat, everything about Clobbr makes cute feedback, from the spring noise of using a trampoline, to the smashing of the rocks, you’ll enjoy all the sound effects and music Clobbr has to offer.
Back at University, I done an intensive research course on immersion in Video Games, showing the different types of immersion a player can achieve in different genres of games, and which games are suited to each environment. Clobbr encapsulates my thesis on short, competitive immersion more so than any game I’ve played in recent memory, with small, addictive levels keeping you hooked for hours in commutes, it’s certainly a mobile game worth playing. From start to finish, Clobbr will offer you hours of entertainment, ensuring that wherever you are, you can always pick up and play without too much effort. For those of you that love puzzle games, and get addicted to simple, short levels similar to angry birds, Clobbr is for you.
Clobbr will be released on iOS on the 23rd of January, and can already be purchased on the Android App Store for £1.19.