“A Pretty Good Diversion at Just the Right Price.”
An XboxHornet review by raditts.
Upon seeing the cover of Defy Gravity, which features a woman unzipping her space suit in front of a space backdrop, you might be led to believe that some indie developer out there was so distraught over the short-lived TV drama “Defying Gravity,” which judging from the commercials was about astronauts banging other astronauts in the lonely vacuum of space, that they decided to make an indie fangame of it.
However, you may be either relieved or disappointed to start the game and find that it has nothing to do with lonely astronauts or space strippers, and if you hadn’t looked at the cover art, you would have no idea that the player character is female. In fact, aside from the “vacuum of space” part, the cover gives almost no indication as to what the game is actually about. To be fair, though, the game doesn’t really tell you what the game is about either; the closest thing to a plot is a caption under an image of a spaceship flying through space, stating that you’ve found some lost alien civilization that may have some artifact that will help you save your own civilization (spoiler alert: you don’t find out what it is or whether it helps at the end of the game, either).
You won’t just be strolling in and taking the artifact home, however, as the lost aliens made sure to set up a series of arcane deathtraps before fading into oblivion. Your only tool to ensure that you don’t join those dead aliens is your trusty gravity gun, which is capable of generating gravity wells that can either attract or repel objects in their vicinity. Through clever use of these wells, you’ll have to guide yourself over walls and through laser fields, and protect yourself from space mines and other objects that want nothing more than to reduce you to a shower of tumbling limbs. Your suit is also equipped with a gravity shield, which exempts you from the effects of the gravity wells.
There are about 20-25 levels to get through, and few of them ever get to a level of difficulty where you can’t easily maneuver yourself to the end by “rocket jumping” by jumping and shooting an anti-gravity well below you, or using the attract wells to pull you up to where you need to go. There are a few levels that mix things up a little by making your gravity shield glitch out and stay on for the duration of the level, in which you need to use your gravity wells to guide platforms along to the exit. For those times when you do die, however, I was pleased to see that the game sets checkpoints pretty regularly for you, so you won’t be set back too far.
Overall, Defy Gravity is not a terribly challenging or memorable game, but is a pretty good diversion for the hour or two it will keep you occupied, and the price is right at 80 points. If you’re a sucker for physics based puzzles or platformers, you should definitely give it a try. Hopefully it’ll be successful enough that a sequel with more fleshed-out features will come out in the future.
Game Score: 8/10.
Download a free demo of the game here.