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Review: Tomb Towers (PC)By Ofisil At 20.05.2020 18:00

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A cute necromancer has filled the kingdom with all sorts of cute monsters, but, unfortunately for him, there's a cute knight there to stop him. Tomb Tower has that cartoony, old school look of Wonder Boy in Monster World, but with a much more minimalist approach towards the visuals. In no way does its simplicity make this ugly, but surely don't expect this to wow you with how it looks… or sounds. It's nice, however, how it wears its influences very heavily on its sleeves, to the point that it looks like something out of an MSX-era system.

This purely retro simplicity continues with the actual gameplay, with the concept behind this action-puzzler being this: here is door, here is key - get key, open door. Monsters and traps will make things a little harder for the knight, who must use his platforming and puzzle-solving skills to overcome the challenges of the tower. While it can be difficult, though, this generally isn't as merciless as other games of its ilk.

As an example, a relic (or more) is in each level. These are optional, yet while a bit tougher to get than the key (although not always) it all still feels a bit too easy, so few will leave any of them behind. This even lets you reset a stage without having to waste a life, but this only removes the key from your hand, which means that you don't have to get a key and a relic in a single try. Somewhat weird for a title that is otherwise so… well, retro.

Surprisingly, despite the lack of any genuine challenge, this manages to be quite enjoyable. The first reason is that no room overstays its welcome, with not a single one lasting more than five or so minutes - even less when you know the solution to a level. The second reason is that this adds new elements that keep things relatively fresh. All this combined, make Tomb Tower a fun, as well as casual-friendly title; one that won't make you play it for hours upon hours, but also one that is great for a quick and relaxing gaming session.

One interesting thing about it, is the unconventional way jumping is handled. It's hard to accurately describe it, but when the knight jumps and hits a block with his head, he doesn't fall down, but actually keeps on "moving" up for a second or two, enabling him to do all sorts of clever acrobatics to reach the items in a room, or to avoid getting killed. It's honestly simpler than it sounds, and the fact that you can change the speed of movement on the fly, makes it easy to practice with that.

If there's something bad with Tomb Towers, that would be exactly how stuck to the past it is. It is way too simple, quite possibly even for the era it pays homage to. In other words, this could definitely benefit from having a couple of modern mechanics, which would make thing a little more interesting. It's still a fun title, especially for those who grew up with such games, but it won't stay with you for long. It's a very well-crafted… alright.

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Final Score
[i]Tomb Towers[/i] is a fun puzzle-platformer; one that's well made, easy to learn, and perfect to kill a couple of hours with, especially since its challenge is as high enough as it needs to be in order to make you feel good about yourself, but never really create any major problems - and it's retro vibes it gives are great too. Sadly, this is one of those titles that won't last for long, and the relatively low level of difficulty makes it a tough recommendation for those who want something that will put their skills to the test.

6

/10

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