When it comes to buying video games, there is almost nothing better than getting package deals. Say you have never played a Mass Effect game - you can get the entire trilogy in one, nice and tidy combo package. Haven't gotten around to picking up that awesome game that came out earlier in the year, but now you have a few extra bucks to spend? If it was a critically acclaimed game, like say Borderlands 2, you can probably pick up the Game of the Year edition, which not only includes the game, but most if not all of the DLC that was released throughout the year as well.
And then there is the Orange Box, one of the most popular, best-selling and well received collections of video games ever, all for one low price.
Of course, Humble Bundles of PC games are in a league of their own when it comes to bundling games at one low price, and thankfully, the do it without worrying about making a quick buck, as their contributions to charity is proof that sometimes, the industry is more than just business. In cases like that, everyone wins, especially the consumers.
A while ago (maybe last year?), there was a package of games released on the PSN for the PS3 that I picked up on a whim, mainly because it was cheap, but also because the games included in the packaged looked fantastic, and definitely the types of games I could thoroughly enjoy. It's called the Arkedo Series, and while I knew nothing about the games before hand, I learned just how much trusting my instincts can pay off sometimes, and how package deals are totally worth it, when done correctly.
This package was done correctly, for sure.
The Arkedo Series package contains three games: Jump!, Swap! and Pixel!. Sure, the names are almost too simplistic, but "simplistic" fits the style and feeling of the games perfectly. The titles are essentially descriptions of the games themselves, which is irony in it's truest form. Thankfully, the simplistic nature of the titles and the games truly make the experience more enjoyable.
Jump! is a 8-bit platforming game, who's protagonist, Jumpman, bares a striking resemblance to Pitfall Harry. You simply need to just traverse level after level, collecting coins, defeating enemies and deactivating the bombs scattered throughout the level in order to open up the exit. In classic, 8-bit old-school fashion, once you lose all your lives, there is no "continue" options. You have to start all over, from the beginning. Thankfully, all the levels remain the same over and over again, so pattern recognition kicks in eventually allowing you to make it back to where you ended the last game fairly stress-free. If you're a fan of classic platformers, Jump! is right up your alley.
Swap! is a blocks-falling-from-the-top puzzle game with the match-4 style, resembling most games in the genre. The farther you progress in the game, the quicker and more challenging the games becomes. By the end, it's anything but a cake walk, which is exactly what you would want from a game like this. Aside from the basic story mode, there is a challenge mode which dares you to try and accomplish certain challenges in order to advance. Essentially, they just as replayability, but there is nothing wrong with that.
Finally, there is Pixel!, which you control a pixelated cat named Pixel the Cat, setting out on an adventure through a nocturnal, pixelated world. It is a platformer game as well, but much more of an adventure than Jump! is. It plays and controls well, and while the visual elements are exactly what you think it would be, the true charm of this game lies within the writing. For what it is, there is a lot of humor and quirkiness that you need to experience to fully appreciate.
All in all, this package of games was a steal, in my humble opinion. All three games spoke to my soul in different ways, mostly bringing back feelings of nostalgia while presenting them in classic yet modern versions of familiar-feeling games. And for only a few bucks, there isn't many more video games packages out there that give you more fun and entertainment than the Arkedo Series.
As long as we don't talk about Humble Bundles.
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