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Chick-A-Droid

Published by Alawar Entertainment
Price $19.95
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Primary Genre Secondary Genre

Having been in previous reviews a marijuana grower, a sportsman playing a golf/baseball cross on the moon and a yellow smiley face collecting flowers, it comes as little surprise to me that this week I am... a chicken. A robot chicken. Set disbelief to "suspend" and follow me into the mad labyrinths of Dr. Kajiya.

What a manic looking chicken! All the graphics have been carefully rendered to add some extra polish.

Chick-A-Droid is a rather loopy yet polished puzzle game in which your objective is to escape each of 99 labyrinths. You do this by collecting all the keys and thus opening the exit portal. This would be simple were it not for the twist - every square you move in any direction, the labyrinth moves a square the other way! There are also special puzzles and if you complete all 99, you get access to the level editor to construct your own mad puzzles.

Loopy? I mean no insult. The game really is off the wall - if a robot chicken hero was not mad enough for you, the game music (and the tongue-out manic looking chicken on the title page, come to think of it) should help. Not so much chicken as cuckoo. You even drop 'egg bombs' to blow up gun turrets!

As we move towards the maze - it draws towards us! Those green, irradiating, high explosive egg bombs are pretty neat.

The graphics are beautifully rendered and smoothly animated, showing true professionalism. The extra effort pays off, separating this game from other, similar puzzles by the sheer look. It is difficult to think how these could be improved without a 3D viewpoint, which has been done so often that it could do more harm than good.

This game is a trifle loud. You have been warned! Turn the speakers down if family members are trying to work or sleep! The music is cheerful, and did I mention loopy? Sound effects are also quality. The music can perhaps get rather irritating over time, but there is an option to turn it off mid-game if you wish.

Chick-A-Droid is very simple to play - standard four-directional controls with a button for your bombs. You gain more bombs by completing mazes with enough time left, and extra lives by collecting diamonds. Watch out for pills that reverse your direction controls!

Fun and simple to learn to play, this is a somewhat bizarre but very professionally done game that deserves to do well. It sets a benchmark for audio/visual quality that I hope to see many more games equalling, if not exceeding. The only question now is - who on Earth is Dr. Kajiya??

Graphics 95%
Sound 85%
Playability 80%
Longevity 70%
Overall Score 84%
Silver Star

Published on 14 Nov 2003
Reviewed by Andrew Williams

Keywords: chick-a-droid review, alawar entertainment reviews, alawar entertainment games, chick-a-droid scores, pc game reviews, indie game reviews, independent gaming.

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