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Published by Redclaw Software
Price $19.95
Primary Genre Secondary Genre

This week we have a puzzle game with a simple concept and some rather clever ideas. Your mission (should you choose to accept it) is to find a way around fifty levels set out in space, collect all the energy balls and get all your goobs to the exit vortex. Don't let any of them fall into space or get zapped by laser beams!

Welcome to Goobs... Looks easy - but is it?

A brief definition here, I think. Goobs are little aliens that enjoy hopping about the place. Despite sounding like the contents of your hankerchief after blowing your nose, they're quite cute. They also seem to have no arms, but let's not dwell on that, or how they manage to carry these energy balls without them.

Your main obstacle/tool in the game is the humble Box. You can push them to make floating platforms in space, block laser beams, or hold down pressure switches. Beware of weak floors, laser beams, one-way floors and pressure switches but most of all beware the fiendish mind of the level designer. Despite some fairly basic rules this game has tough puzzles.

Playing around in the level designer. One of the harder puzzles.

The controls are very simple. You select each goob in turn by pressing the spacebar, or clicking on one with the mouse. You then move them about one square at a time by either clicking on the adjacent squares or using the arrow keys. Goobs can push boxes if there are no obstacles in the way. To complete each level you must collect all the energy balls and get all the goobs to the exit. Fail either of these conditions and you fail the level.

Goobs has several fairly unique ideas. The option to watch or record solutions to the levels is superb if you find yourself stuck. There's also a level designer if you fancy creating your own. And you can adjust the speed of the goobs too, so beginners won't lose a goob because he bounced too far and went off the edge.

Graphically the game is very polished, with several design schemes to vary the levels. Motion is smooth and the graphics are clear and well animated. The sound, too, is high quality and the effects would be considered excellent despite the limited number of them, except for the fact that I heard only one tune in the entire game and it can get repetitive, as do the boinging sounds of the Goobs. Fortunately there are options to turn both sound and music off!

I have two niggling complaints beyond the sound. The first is that the difficulty of the levels doesn't always seem to follow a rising curve, but then judging puzzle difficulty is a near impossible task as it is so subjective. The second is that you cannot choose levels to play beyond the latest one and the previously completed ones, despite the fact that you can simply watch the solution of any level and let it complete itself!

Graphics 90%
Sound 70%
Playability 90%
Longevity 75%
Overall Score 88%
Silver Star

Published on 27 Jun 2003
Reviewed by Andrew Williams

Keywords: goobs review, redclaw software reviews, redclaw software games, goobs scores, pc game reviews, indie game reviews, independent gaming.