Rise & Shine Xbox One Review

February 28, 2017 by  
Filed under Xbox One, Reviews & Features, Xbox

Publisher: Adult Swim Games  Developer: Super Mega Team  Genre: Platformer

Players: 1  Age Rating: 16+  Other console/handheld formats: N/A

Adult Swim Games have brought us Rise & Shine, a twin stick platformer that plays parody to the video game world.  Meet Rise, a nervous young boy thrown into a world (Gamearth) that’s under attack from an unknown entity, and meet Shine, a gun that packs a real punch but sadly didn’t save its previous owner from a perilous end.

From the outset there’s one thing that really stands out in this platformer, the graphics are truly amazing, for a platformer at least. The game is completely 2D but the graphics are extremely submersive and quite often it’s hard to tell the difference from backdrop and obstacles, although this could be perceived as a good thing, at times this has a negative impact on gameplay with losing your tracking of enemies as they swarm down on to you.

The audio, whilst beautiful and submersive, appears to impact on the loading times.  I found myself staring more at the loading screens than I did playing the game – every time you die you’re hit with a loading screen and when moving from level to level you are impacted with an even longer loading screen. If you need plenty of restroom breaks or just enough time to get a cup of tea or a can of an energy drink, then at least these loading breaks will give you plenty of time to do so.

The game may look cute here, but it really is brutal in both its difficulty and violence.

The game itself is quite difficult which for me is a major downfall. The game adopts twin-stick style shooting, and those who are familiar with twin-stick shooters shouldn’t find themselves having much trouble. Without a form of rapid fire, it’s quite difficult to accurately find and terminate your targets without taking time to reload.  The enemies spawn and attack extremely fast so a certain degree of multi-tasking is required in order to progress through the vastly difficult levels.

Whilst I’ve complained a fair amount about the difficulty of the game it does still have merits that can possibly overcome the brutal aspects of the game, given that you have patience that is.  With a comic-esque feel which takes me back to the likes of Comix Zone all those years back on the Sega Mega Drive, it helped push me on further through each level.  Also the parody appearances of characters such as Bomberman, Snake, Mario and Marcus Fenix all gave me an entertainment value that’s barely represented in games these days.

The game offers up 14 levels (or so I’m told, I didn’t get anywhere near to the end), and over the course of the levels you will receive upgrades and take on inventive bosses who are equally, if not more, brutal that the level itself.  To me the only way I could truly describe Rise & Shine in as few words as possible is to say “It’s a comic, platform version of Dark Souls”.

To summarise the game is pretty unforgiving for platformer novices, and although the game is a work of art I feel that the design style may attract the wrong players who will feel frustrated and disheartened by the brutality of this well crafted game.  But, if you’re a glutton for punishment and feel like taking on a challenge then this is perfect for you.