“Time Stops, it’s the world of silence.” Check if Constant C is worth your time.
Constant C is a puzzle based 2D platformer from Taiwan developer, IGS. If you like games like Braid or Yet it Move, you will love Constant C. Here you play as a rescue robot in a space station where the time has stopped, and fight against this fatal crisis with your courage and intelligence. Awaken by the ship’s A.I, your mission is repairing and “turning on” the station. Time has stopped! Everything is frozen in time apart from the AI and you. Something eerie has happened on that station and as you play you learn more and more about how and why this happened. And this is done in a fantastic way, the more power cores you collect, the more story bits, which are animated cutscenes, you unlock and from what I saw, the story was very interesting indeed.
The game starts after you meet this AI. In order for time to restart and bring the station online, you have to collect power cores. These cores help the AI to restart time and repair the station. The way the game is structured resembles that of a mobile game. The area where the AI stands acts as a hub world and after you have collected enough cores, new parts of the station or “worlds” will unlock which contain a different number of levels each time.These levels vary in size, but most if them can be completed in under one minute and if you fail one or decide to restart it’s instantaneous. No load screens and in the end you are graded with stars depending on how you did on that level.
Each “world” introduces a new type of a gameplay mechanic or gimmick. For example, in the first one you learn about your ability to unfreeze time for specific objects in the level. Your robot has a blue aura around him, Time Circle is called in game, and when an object like a box or a bridge is inside its range, time starts and the object moves. But this is putting it simple, cause as the game progresses these objects are affected by gravity, speed, direction of movement, inertia etc. And here is where this game shines. The first levels of each world are tutorials for the new ability, but the later ones, here is where things become interesting. New abilities such as gravity shifting, where you can shift the whole level and other cool abilities are introduced and are greatly implemented in the puzzles. Some puzzles will be hard and some very hard and for many of them, you will need to think just a little outside of the box to solve them.
Traversing through a level can be a lot of fun, if you know what to do and if you execute the actions perfectly, you will feel like a ninja! Everything has weight and it is affected by physics so you have to be careful of what you unfreeze. A big box will crush you, a bridge will crush you. Also your robot can’t survive big falls and a shift of gravity at the correct moment might save your life well, just might. The level and more importantly the puzzle designs are fantastic. As I previously said, some puzzles are a piece of cake, but some are super difficult and yes, you will rage (quite hard sometimes), but not at controller throwing level. Here’s what is interesting about this game which I liked very much, it’s easy to understand but difficult to master, but still possible and it gives a lot of satisfaction once achieved.
Presentation is fantastic too. The game has a very minimalist yet very detailed artstyle. The little robot looks great and the animations are greatly done too. Maybe it is only me, but looking at him reminded me of Jake from Adventure Time. The color palette is very interesting too, black and blue are the main colors used which give the game the feel and create the atmosphere of being inside a space station, everything looks metallic and sounds too. It also fares really good in the sound department, the guys at IGS have done a great work with the music and sound effects.
Bottom Line: Constant C is a fantastic 2D puzzle platformer. It has fantastic gameplay, it looks amazing, it has a great and interesting story and it’s a long game. Definitely worth checking out if you are or aren’t a puzzle game fan.
Constant C was reviewed on a PC using a Desura code provided by IGS. Constant C is now available on Desura and it is currently on Steam Greenlight so go vote it there.