Developer: Archiact Interactive Ltd.
Release Date: Out Now
Nausea: Limited/Dependent on VR Experience
Controllers: DS4 & Move Compatible
A well-designed puzzle game that doesn’t benefit enormously from VR but features enough challenge and content for its price.
I must admit that I’m not a huge fan of puzzle games like this. I enjoy them for the first dozen levels, then they get too hard and I’m often too impatient to continue. Saying that I can tell when a game is well made and Waddle Home certainly is.
The aim of the game here is to guide your penguin friends to the hovering spaceship in each level. The trouble is you don’t control them directly, but rather they move forward of their own volition and turn right whenever they hit a wall or obstacle. You must make sure their path is clear, or not, if you’d rather them make a right turn. By pointing and click the in-game controller you can lower and raise yellow blocks, which can help guide the penguins to their destination. There are also three pink eggs per level, which you must collect via a penguin if you want to fully complete the level and up your score.
As you would expect the game increases in difficulty as you progress, with the levels and the routes your penguins can take getting more complicated. The three pink eggs scattered through the levels are also harder to obtain and they start throwing enemies at you. Some levels have more enemies than others and some start to throw out other obstacles as well, such as the locked door mechanic. A door can be unlocked by a penguin walking over the switch, but if another penguin walks over the switch, it’ll lock again. The pace at which new mechanics are introduced is sound; at no point did I feel overwhelmed with new information.
The controls are simple enough and the game is compatible with both the DS4 and Move controllers – you only need one Move to play Waddle Home. You can point and click at your penguins to speed them up, or hit them on the head with the controller – a slight but appreciated feature.
The game doesn’t benefit much from being in VR. There are parts where you can move your head and lean from side to side to get a slightly better view of where your penguins are going to walk – this is more helpful when they’re walking through a tunnel – but you can easily rotate the level with R1 and L1. I found I had to lean forward, calibrate the VR headset via the ‘options’ button and lean back to get a comfortable view of the level in the first place. If I didn’t do this I felt the level was far too close to my eyes. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s certainly nice to play the game in VR and I enjoyed it more than I would have otherwise, but there were no VR “wow” moments here.
There’s not much to say about the music and sound other that they suit the game; the squeaks from the penguins are cute, the music sits in the background nicely.
There are forty levels that I could see – I only got to number seventeen before I got bored, but as I said at the beginning of this review, these types of games aren’t really for me. It’s a well-made puzzler and if that’s your thing you’ll most likely enjoy it – but I doubt it’ll be remembered as a classic in the years to come.
Verdict: 7/10 – A well-made game for those who enjoy puzzlers.