Overall Score 67%
Go Go Medley
Another colour-matching puzzle game this week. This one is very heavily action based, and contains nearly no strategic elements at all. In Go Go Medley, the player makes matches on the game board, and plays for points and achievements in a single player environment.
You know the deal by now, right? Just arrange blocks on the board to make matches of the same colour. Matched blocks disappear, new blocks fall in from the top and score is allocated based on the number blocks cleared and the complexity of any resulting combos. The differentiating feature that attempts to set Go Go Medley apart from the crowd is that there are a number of different game modes that are unexpectedly not user-selectable. All appear in the same game. One moment youíre playing a game that you need to swap adjacent tiles to make matches, the next you need to rotate groups of 4 to make them, and a few minutes later, youíre sliding rows and columns to rid the world of those pesky coloured blocks. You need to quickly refocus and reassess the board from a different perspective regularly, as the modes change. If nothing else, this concept does help to keep the game fresh for longer than I would normally play a block clearing game, but without an overarching story mode, or some meta-game content, thereís still a big question mark hanging over the longevity of titles like these. I find that I just need some kind of incentive to keep playing, and Iím not really getting it with this game.
In other words, Go Go Medley is an extremely casual game. Itís in the most casual bracket of the genre. Well geared for short, intensive bursts of play for 5 to 10 minutes. If youíre looking for a game with more longevity, greater customisability but a similarly casual flavour, then the game we reviewed last month, ďTidalisĒ, might be more your cup of tea. To illustrate, one of the modes of play in Go Go Medley simply requires the player to click on groups of 2 like-coloured blocks or more to clear them. This is verging more on being an interactive screensaver than a game in the true sense of the word.
The graphics are colourful, bright and engaging, and the sound effects are super. The style is very attractive and presentation is great. The looping background music fits the pace of the game well, and although it did become a bit repetitive over time, itís hard to imagine that if I had not been testing the game for this review that I would have been playing it for so long. The game would be ideally suited for young kids!
There are a few elements that creep into the game as the player progresses through the stages. A good variety of fairly powerful pickups, like lightning strikes, infernos and bonus multipliers. These are offset by some rather annoying tiles like locks and stone blocks that impede the ability to make simple matches. Thereís no way to win the game; the player carries on until there are no more moves left on the board and at that point the final score is saved and, if good enough, uploaded to the online high score chart. Games in which there is no clear path for the player to win (like in many tower defence style games) really tend to frustrate me as a gamer - thereís something about a gamer that wants to see a victory screen, and progression through a game. These sorts of cravings will not be fulfilled by Go Go Medley.
There are some trophies to be won by competing certain achievements in the game (around 20 of them from memory), and I do like the idea of these in general. They serve to give a bit of purpose to all the block clearing aside from simply racking up a monster score. Visiting the trophy room also allows access to the players record and statistics, though a precursory inspection of these would indicate that the code is bugged somewhat. After just under an hour of play on the laptop, Iím expected to believe that I have busted up over 200 million stone blocks! I donít think so.
The game supports multi-user profiles, and has a fairly good range of screen resolutions available as well as a full screen/windowed mode toggle. The game also installs and uninstalls cleanly and provides the option to install the latest DirectX package, thus minimising performance issues for less computer savvy end users. Itís also worth noting that the game is controlled entirely by the mouse, and control input is intuitive and responsive.
Finally, the game crashed whenever I used the button to advance to the screen where I could unlock my copy of the demo using a provided registration key. My main gaming rig runs on Win7 and my laptop uses Vista (both 64-bit versions). Therefore all observations and comment are based on the limited demo version of Go Go Medley. The time limit of one hour on the demo is quite generous and after just on two hours of playtime, Iím really left wondering whether thereíd be enough content remaining in the full version of the game for me to consider a purchase. Thatís assuming that I enjoy playing colour matching puzzle games, which as a general rule of thumb I donít. Horses for courses though. There must be a giant mass out players out there that do like them, judging by the sheer volume of these types of games available on the PC these days.
Keywords: go go medley review, oddgoat studios reviews, oddgoat studios games, go go medley scores, pc game reviews, indie game reviews, independent gaming.