Platinum trophy

A Hat in Time

By TheDblTap

A SERIOUSLY FUN HOMAGE TO GAMECUBE GAMING

A Hat in time is a platforming collect-em-up which feels so utterly alike classic 3D Mario games that you could be fooled into believing Nintendo played a part in its inception, all it’s missing is Nintendo Polish. 

The game’s mechanics clearly pull from Super Mario Sunshine and Super Mario 64, you traverse the various levels with a series of jumps, double-jumps, dives and wall-jumps in such a similar way to how you’d get around in Nintendo’s flagship character’s classic games that I felt a spike of nostalgia every time I booted it up. 

A Hat in Time follows a space-faring young girl, known to others as “Hat Kid”. She never speaks but the fully voice-acted characters who come to know her all give her a name which you can call her but we never find out what it really is. 

Her Spaceship is fueled by powerful magical Hourglasses called “timepieces” which have the ability to manipulate time. At the start of the game, they are blown out of a hole in the ship and sent plummeting down to a strange nearby planet, your goal is to get them back!

The Time Pieces obviously allow you to unlock new areas and progress in the game!

You can do this by completing challenges and quests in each of the game’s 5 worlds;

  • Mafia Island – No, not the real-life Mafia island in Zanzibar, this picturesque rounded island is overrun by the actual Mafia. 
  • Dead Bird Studios – A film studio which plays host to a strong rivalry between a 70s Disco Penguin and the most terrier-dog-looking Owl you’ve ever seen. 
  • Subcon Forest – A dark and very spooky forest full of spirits and ghosts, including a particular ghost who just can’t stop writing up contracts in exchange for your soul. This level even features a pseudo-homage to Luigi’s Mansion. 
  • Alpine Skyline – a truly beautiful free-roam area based on Tibetan mountain ranges, full of mystery and zip-lining. 
  • The Finale – yep, you guessed it, the last level, featuring only a boss fight. 

Speaking of Boss Fights, the boss fights in this game are where it really departs from the Nintendo formula. Rather than needing to hit your foe just 3 times these boss fights are long, complex pattern-based brawls which prove to be a real challenge that you can really sink your teeth (and time) into!

This first boss is clearly a charming homeage to Paper Mario!

The game’s similarities to the 3D Mario series are done tactfully and with individuality, there are unique mechanics present which offer a fresh and totally new perspective on this genre of gaming and they avoid being too samey – even changing the formula slightly for the Alpine area, allowing you to free-roam and keeping the game fresh just as it begins to become stale. 

There is, however, a striking similarity to the latest entry into the Mario series; Super Mario Odyssey, and not just because of the focus on hats. The traversal methods in Odyssey are one of the greatest things about it and they really set it apart from previous games in the series. The way you can combine jumping combos with dives and reach places you feel like you shouldn’t be, makes you feel both skilled and freed. 

This is somewhat present in A Hat in Time, just not to the same extent, and it’s possible to skip through some jumping puzzles with a little skill, combining jumps with dives and wall-scrambles to really make you feel like you’ve mastered the game – but it’s not necessary! 

The weird thing about that is that Super Mario Odyssey came out after A Hat in Time, by about 22 days. Of course, that means it is extremely unlikely that Nintendo could have copied what the Hat in Time Devs were up to, but it does feel like Odyssey built on what A Hat in Time brought to the table. 

Most likely, both teams were following gaming trends for the time and landed in fairly similar places.

A Hat in Time Gameplay

The main mechanics of the game focus around jumping – of course – but your ability to explore is often dictated by the hats you can wear. There are 6 of these hats which you can build by collecting yarn for each hat while exploring the world. Once you have created a hat, you can still find balls of yarn for it in any other level, but it will be converted into universal yarn which can be used to create other hats, as long as you have at least one yarn for that hat. 

The hats give you powers like being able to sprint, and in turn long-jump, or interact with platforms which are otherwise intangible.

Just half of the available hats. They also have customisable skins which you can unlock from doing Rifts or from the Gachapon machine on the ship.

This range of abilities is then expanded upon with the inclusion of “Badges”. Small pins which Hat Kid can wear on her hats to give her new abilities – such as the invaluable Hookshot – or improve on what she has, like turning her normal umbrella attacks into a powerful long-range chargeable beam. 

You can attack enemies with and she’ll give them a good thwapping with her umbrella, but you can also dive-attack enemies by pressing whilst in the air. This dive attack is actually quite important for getting around in some areas, where you’ll need to dive-attack a spider to get across a gap.

It’s actually pretty tough to get right and can often be frustrating as sometimes – for no reason at all – the attack just won’t trigger. It’s also the only way to attack in the air, which is a bit disappointing because sometimes I had an uncontrollable urge to jump at an enemy and whop them on the noggin with my brolly, but all that would happen is I’d jump in the air and then land on the enemy, hurting myself.

There’s a pretty tricky trophy for doing 5 air-dive attacks in a row.

For a game about jumping around and platforming, there actually is – surprisingly – fall damage. But it’s pretty lenient, you can fall from some pretty impressive heights and still walk away. You can also get a badge which makes Hat Kid deploy her umbrella and Mary Poppins her way to safety if you’re falling from too high up.

The aim of each level in the game is, of course, to collect the Shine Sprites Time Pieces. Collecting an hourglass will send you back to the ship, which can be annoying if you’re working on other trophies or side-objectives and need to start again if you collect the hourglass.

From the ship, you can then select another level to do in the same world or go to a different world to try out the levels available there. Levels are essentially different challenges set in the same world, which can vary from platforming challenges to boss fights to stealth missions, upon the completion of which you receive your Time Piece. 

Each world is full of hidden mystery, caches of Pons (the game’s currency with which you can buy badges and relic plinths), hidden relics, balls of yarn and trophy opportunities. There are also things called “Time Rifts”. Similar to the trippy toybox worlds you could find hidden away in Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine, these worlds consist of platforms floating in a void which you need to navigate. 

Fans of the Mario series will be very familiar with rotating platforms shaped like this.

You can unlock Time Rifts by progressing in a world a certain amount, you’ll then be given a photo-hint as to its location which you can use to find it in the relevant world and complete it for a bonus Time Piece. 

Each world has 3 Time rifts to complete, two of them blue and one purple. The purple rifts unlock once you have collected a certain number of hidden relics (not necessarily in that same world) and then displayed them on a relic plinth within your ship. Relic plinths can be purchased for 200 Pons and you will need 4 in total.

Purple rifts are much longer and consist of several jumping puzzles. They are also themed more towards the world they’re found in, although quite a dark and warped alteration of the world’s theme. 

Purple Rifts have a spooky and abandoned atmosphere… Like a shopping centre/mall after dark!

In each of the puzzles, you can find special gold Pons. These Pons can be used to buy access to the next puzzle. What’s quite nice about this is that you don’t need all of the available gold Pons, just enough to reach the next area, and if you have surplus you get to keep them for the next area in-case it proves difficult.

There are also hidden pages which, if you find them all, can be combined into a picture-book depicting the history of that world. They’re not needed for any trophies but are cool nonetheless.

My A Hat in Time Platinum Experience

I had an incredibly fun time getting the Platinum for this game. It was lengthy and fulfilling without being too dragged out or boring in places. The progression pacing was really well done and after just 10 minutes in the game, you can really feel like you’ve made some solid progress. 

There are a lot of miscellaneous trophies though, not necessarily tied to in-game progression, so even if you get really far in the game, you might look at your trophy list and still only see “13%”. This ends up being quite satisfying though, as you approach the end of your playthrough and start to pop trophies left and right.

I started off by wanting to just play through the game, enjoy what story there is and just immerse myself in the nostalgia for a while. But, it didn’t take very long before my trophy hunter instincts kicked in and I found myself sticking my nose in every little crook and nanny I could find, looking for yarn, Relics, Pon and anything else I could get my greedy mits on.

I was delighted the second I set my eyes on this Level, look how charming it is!

Worth noting, by the way, that after I got about 50% of the way in the game I stopped going after yarn because I realised what an abundance of yarn there was. By the time I’d used my yarn to buy the last hat I still had an absurd amount of spare yarn.

I think that’s quite nice of the developers, personally. There’s nothing worse when you’re playing a collect-em-up than the last 2-3 hours spent looking for that one last item you need and not knowing where it is or which one you’re missing in order to just Google it. It’s nice to have that peace of mind that you don’t need all of the yarn or pon in every level.

In-fact the only collectables you really need to get 100% of are the Relics – of which there are only a few, like 15 or something – and the Time Pieces which are, of course, really easy to find and there are only 40.

I had no difficulty in finding any of these. Otherwise, I’d say something like “There’s one really well-hidden relic here on this level” but they are genuinely really easy to find.

A Hat in Time Platinum Trophy Tips & Tricks

The platinum is genuinely quite easy, you just need to be willing to put in the time – which shouldn’t be a big ask for a game as wonderful as this! 

I would recommend, however, that you leave most of the miscellaneous trophies until you have the last hat:

Spoiler

The Time Stop Hat will let you slow down time dramatically. This includes missions which have a timer attached so it’s perfect for “No time to explain” and “Afraid of Water”

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You can also get a really helpful badge which will reduce cooldowns to a great extent, allowing you to use abilities such as the last hat almost non-stop.

Combining that badge and the last hat makes most of the trophies a breeze!

There is one trophy you need to get which required you to beat a boss without dying while wearing a badge which will make you die after one hit:

One Punch Defeat any boss with the 1-hit hero badge equipped.

This trophy is very, very hard in my opinion, I had a horrible time trying to do this.

I recommend doing the Subcon Toilet mission with the 1-hit hero badge equipped, the cooldown badge and the last hat, which makes it a lot more possible, but still really difficult.

Here’s the equipment set-up I finally managed to get this trophy with.

I just kept having bouts of horrible luck, every time I’d grab the explosive apple I’d just so happen to do it just above an attack which would then kill me, or I’d run out of double-jumps at the wrong time, things like that. But also whenever I did have a good run I’d always get so damn close, like, one hit away from killing the boss, before dying. I’d then never be able to reach that point again for another 10-15 tries, it was absolutely maddening.

I was understandably ecstatic when I finally pulled it off!

Eventually, I did manage it. The best advice I could offer is not to abuse that last hat’s ability too much, try to do things without it as much as you can because sometimes it’s detrimental (you’ll see what I mean).

I can’t think of any other trophies anybody might struggle with, except maybe this one?:

Pillow Fort Find Hat Kid’s Secret Hideout!

If you’re struggling to find it, the solution is in the spoiler tags below:

Spoiler

If you go to the telescope which takes you to Subcon Forest, you’ll see a large pile of pillows which you can actually swim in. If you clip your camera through this mass of pillows you might see a suspicious-looking hole in the floor. Use the Ice hat’s ability while above this hole to make yourself heavy enough to fall right in.

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None of the trophies are missable and you can revisit and replay any mission you’ve already completed, so go wild! Have fun! The game is a really jovial jaunt and I hope you find as much joy in it as I did!

My Verdict:


Plat


I loved this game inside out, it was a lot of fun and I was always excited to get back on it after some time away, it took a little while to get into at first but once it had me I was hooked!

Pros:


  • Fun and adaptive gameplay
  • Oozes nostalgia
  • Gameplay changes to avoid becoming stale

Cons:


  • Lack of polish
  • Kicks you out of a world between objectives

Platinum trophy

Platinum Trophy

It may not have that triple-A polish, but the mechanics and gameplay give this game a godly glow and it’s definitely worth picking up!

About the Author

TheDblTap is fond of single-player action and adventure games as well as the odd collect-em-up or RPG. He thinks FPS games are stale and repetitive and has little patience for gunfights which are too drawn-out. Originally a Nintendo gamer, the PlayStation line of consoles quickly took their grasp as he fell in love with Sony’s gamer-centric approach and – eventually – collecting shiny, shiny trophies.

With a keen eye for secrets and treasure, TheDblTap’s play-style often benefits him as a trophy hunter, but as someone with poor timing, he struggles with more skill-based combat trophies…

Bronze Trophy

Deadpool (PS4)

By TheDblTap

ABOUT AS MUCH FUN AS A SANDPAPER DILDO

Deadpool. A name known far and wide and not just for the 2 highly successful and hilarious movies, but because Deadpool is just about one of the funniest comic book characters ever written. 

Constantly at war with the voices in his quickly deteriorating mind, this totally insane character is immortal… buuut he has cancer. The cancer eats away at his body just about as quick as it can regenerate, that kind of pain is bound to drive anyone to some seriously new levels of insanity. 

When you’re immortal but constantly dying, it makes sense that one might turn to humour to help make sense of the world around them and laugh through the pain.

Deadpool has always been one of the more R-rated characters too, more welcoming to an adult audience – just like his good buddy Wolverine!

Yes, you can expect to find Wolverine in the game.

All of that is not lost in the Deadpool game, and Nolan North’s performance as Deadpool is incredible, he captures the character perfectly, maybe even better than Ryan Reynolds. But what would you expect from the biggest legend in video game voice-acting?

So why the negative subtitle? Well, the actual gameplay is arse.

To the game’s credit, it was released last gen, when XBox ruled the markets and every single game was a half-cocked samey shoot-em-up with about as much charm as a used tapeworm.

Oh look, a sewer level… Yay?

Don’t give them too much credit, though, we’re not talking 2010 here, the game came out in 2013. By which point the PS4 was months away from release and we’d seen some incredible games make their way onto our screens, there really wasn’t much excuse to make a game with mechanics this stale.

What’s really quite hilariously sad about the whole thing, though, is that even Deadpool himself will frequently quip about the crappy gameplay which is either the studio being self-deprecating or admitting that they set out to make a low-effort funless hack-and-slasher from the start, as though that was part of the joke. What ever happened to “Maximum Effort”?

Deadpool PS4 Review

The game starts off pretty strongly, with a miniature level inside Deadpool’s apartment which is loaded with Deadpool humour and really puts you in a great mood for the coming gameplay. Unfortunately, once you leave his apartment you’re thrown into the truth of what the game really is.

I don’t think that’s supposed to happen…

There are very few unique environments in the game. You get dark dingy office, dark dingy sewer, dark dingy prison, dark dingy caves, etc. etc. 

There is a little smidge of creativity peppered into each of these places to give them some place within the Marvel universe, but not nearly enough to make it interesting. 

Gameplay consists of fighting enemies in an area, travelling to the next area, maybe completing a puzzle of some sort, and then fighting enemies in an area again. Typically these fights will span multiple waves and you do get the occasional boss fight.

Not very exciting stuff, however, you are rewarded for your progress via cutscenes involving typical Deadpool shenanigans as he annoys Cable, Wolverine, Rogue, Psylocke and Domino who all just want him to understand the seriousness of the villain’s plot.

Cable’s never looked so good.

They don’t feature much in actual gameplay except for one fight alongside Cable and a mild Lady Deadpool reference. Which is a shame, it would have been cool to fight alongside Wolverine or maybe get a few sequences of Domino’s luck powers doing some cool stuff but, alas, they’re just there for the cutscenes.

The selection of villains is even worse. Don’t expect a big-time Deadpool villain like Taskmaster, no, no, you get “Sinister”. And, his fellow infamous villains “Vertigo”, “Blockbuster” and “Arclight”. Just who are they kidding with this? These villains are the kind of villains who only exist so that comic-book characters have someone to beat up in a bank vault while they spray exposition all over the pages.

Ahhh, the cutscenes really do have a lot of charm.

Except from maybe Sinister, these villains don’t pose much of a threat, and even Deadpool himself quips about how the game has total D-list enemies. It’s not charmingly hilarious like it is in the movie when Wade complains about the lack of X-Men movie rights, because it’s not a huge part of the movie, but the villains we’re given are all we have for the entire game, and it’s definitely disappointing. 

The developers lean very heavily into the joke that if Deadpool made a game, it would just be boobs, explosions and poorly-written plot and in the end they don’t even pull the joke off right and you’re left with a disappointing waste of potential.

Oh, there are boobs, by the way.

Ignoring that, how does it play? 

Like most hack and slash shoot-em-ups to be honest. It’s a bit like Devil May Cry, I guess, but with less creativity and action. You have 3 melee weapons to choose from; two Katana with decent attack and speed, two Sai (Sais?) which have high attack speed plus the attack strength of a napkin, and lastly two Hammers with very high attack but quite slow speed. 

From what I can tell most people use the Hammers as soon as they can because of their high attack, but I stuck with the Katana for the majority of my run simply because they were my most upgraded weapon and had balanced speed. 

There are also 4 ranged weapons, all dual-wield of course. The first weapons are simple handguns which don’t have great damage output but their accuracy is one of the best so you can easily get headshots, making them one of the best ranged weapon options. The Shotguns deal high damage from close up but are fairly useless at range, making them good for big melee enemies like the “tubbies”. The SMGs are a good “crap, I don’t have any better weapon ammo left” gun. With shoddy accuracy and small damage per bullet they’re really not going to be your go-to unless you hate aiming. The last guns are awesome, I love these “Pulse Rifles”. They have a decent, steady firing rate, great accuracy and massive damage. Once you have these you probably won’t use any other gun until the ammo runs out. 

Deadpool’s arsenal also includes throwables, you have your standard Flash-bang grenade and explosive grenade but there are also Bear Traps and Land-mines which actually really come in handy for the harder sections of the game.

There’s upgrades, of course.

Apart from the throwables, you can upgrade all your weapons using “DP” (Double Penetration Deadpool Points) which allow you to increase damage output, DP earnings, and ammo capacity as well as unlocking “Momentum” attacks. Similar upgrades are available for Deadpool himself, allowing you to increase Health, Momentum gain and more.

Momentum is exactly what you’re thinking it is (probably). You charge up a bar while you fight and then exhaust said bar by using a special move. Each gun has 1 special move and each weapon has 3. The best special move by far is the one you can perform using the Pulse Rifles. Deadpool spins on the spot firing randomly in all directions and, well, enemies die. A lot.

Here you can see the Momentum prompts on the left.

The enemy types are all pretty lame. They’re supposed to be sinister clones of famous mutants. The one very obvious one is a malfunctioning Gambit clone that runs at you repeating “Ma Cheri” (I think?) until they explode, there are also some quite tough to beat Havok clones who do a lot of damage using Havok’s signature chest-beam. 

The others aren’t so clear though. There’s a really, really annoying enemy type which flies through the air and uses weather attacks on you, but it’s mostly electricity. I guess this is supposed to be storm?

Then, of course, there’s the “Tubbies” who are clearly clones of Blob. So, to be fair to them, the creativity is there but the execution is poor. Because the clones are infused with Sinister’s DNA, they all look the same and it’s boring. Typically the only thing that makes them stand out is what colour they are glowing or whether they are flying or not and in the end, all the developers tried to do is take enemy tropes from other hack-and-slash shoot-em-ups and then warp the X-Men universe to suit those tropes.

My Deadpool Platinum Experience

I felt no joy at getting this Platinum. Only relief.

On the PS3 version of the game, you can’t play the hardest difficulty until you beat the game on normal difficulty, but they got rid of that in the PS4 game and if you’re brave (or just stupid) enough you can jump straight in to the hardest difficulty and have a horrible time.

So I did, and I did have a horrible, horrible time. Almost every fight took 2 or 3 tries and there were multiple times where I’d boot up the game, play for about 20 minutes to get through one fight and then turn it off saying “Yeah, that’s more than enough for today”.

The hardest difficulty was originally put there so that players could replay the game and still have a bit of a challenge now that their character is almost fully upgraded from playing through on normal, but I thought I was being real slick by skipping over that part so I could get the normal difficulty and hard difficulty trophies at the same time. 

I don’t like admitting that such a poorly-made game gave me such a hard time, or that I’m silly enough to just go with it and accept the beating the game was giving me. Had I not been a stubborn and impatient person I probably would have switched difficulties but sadly I am both stubborn and impatient.

The last level of the game, on hard, took me over 4 hours of trial and error because everytime I died (which took only one hit for some enemies) I’d lose 20-30 minutes of progress with some of the worst checkpoint placement in gaming. It is then followed by a truly ridiculous boss fight which is then also followed by a… Honestly quite upsettingly easy boss fight.

Despite the difficulties, I did make it all the way through the game and got both the difficulty trophies at the same time. After that, I just went to chapter select and replayed any levels which had trophies tied to them in some way and collected any I didn’t have. Pretty standard trophy-hunting procedure to be honest, but I have some tips below which might help anyone wanting to plat this game.

I would have at least liked a good trophy screenshot for this one… Oh well.

Deadpool PS4 Platinum Tips and Tricks

So, as I said, it’s good to know you can start on the hardest difficulty from the beginning, but, despite doing that I would actually recommend you don’t. It would actually be quicker for you to play through the game on normal first to get plenty of DP and skills and such before going for the hard run which will be a lot easier. Otherwise you end up wasting a lot of time in futile shoot-outs at a snail’s pace.

There’s not much to say other than that, the game’s trophies are pretty straight-forward, but I do have a few tips for certain trophies that might help you out.

The first thing I’ll say is DO  NOT UPGRADE YOUR SAI (sais?). They’re not going to help you much, so leave upgrading them until you have every trophy except the one for upgrading your gear. There are 2 trophies which are infinitely easier with them not upgraded.

It’s a Trap Get a combo of 75 or more while fighting up the stairs at the front gates of evil

At face value this is one of the hardest trophies, but there’s a great method for it. If you leave your Sai (sais?… I’m gonna keep doing this) un-upgraded then as the fastest weapon it builds a high combo very fast, but the damage will be practically nothing without damage upgrades. So, you can hit an enemy quite a few times before they actually die. 

I did this trophy by hitting one single guy 79 times with the Sai (Sais? … Maybe I should just google the correct pluralisation) before he died, so it’s actually really easy. Do the trophy on normal difficulty so they don’t die too easily.

Don’t forget you need to let the combo “bank”, so don’t get hit.

Be like Joe Bank a 300-hit combo

This is actually really really easy. But, if you upgrade your Sai (I was right, I googled it, it’s not Sais) it’s the hardest trophy in the game. 

Here’s how I did it:

Well, for one, I did upgrade my Sai, so sadly I had to get every other trophy and then reset my character progress from the options on the main menu, then play the game long enough to unlock the Sai again but eventually I had the right setup.

I then loaded up the level “Genosha”. There’s a method online where you just hit the first “Tubby” Blob Clone with the Sai and dodge his attacks, but I kept getting hit in the glitchiest of ways so I changed my method. There are a few enemies which spawn just before the Blob Clone and there are just enough of them that you’ll have a 300-hit combo by the time the tougher enemies come out as long as you only attack with your Sai and counter every attack that comes at you.

The tricky part then is that you don’t just need to reach a 300-hit combo, you need to bank it. I lost my first 300-hit combo because I got hit while running around the arena waiting for it to bank, so just be extra careful you don’t get hit or it will cancel out the combo.

And here I am, running for my life hoping they don’t hit me and cancel out my combo.

So you’ve got some free time? Complete “Landed in Prison” without countering any attacks.

I highly recommend that you do not press at all under any circumstances while trying for this trophy. You may be tempted to use it to teleport away for some breathing space but you’re just as likely to accidentally counter this way, so just keep well away from .

The annoying thing is that this chapter includes a boss fight in which countering is part of the solution to winning. You can instead just use flash-bang grenades against this boss to stun them, allowing you to beat the life out of ‘em.

This game doesn’t give very good trophy screenshots…

Beer Goggles Use all three switches, defeat the two phasers, and chase after Vertigo within 60 seconds

This one seems hard, but can be quite easy. The only thing that really slows this part down is the two phasers you have to kill. I highly recommend you place down as many mines as you can (as quickly as you can) in the center area while you run through it towards the first switch. This will likely deal with the phasers for you, saving you some time. But if you get to the center and there is a phaser still standing, just greet him with a couple of quick shotgun bursts.

The trophy won’t pop until you’re out the door. Which is annoying because this is also the checkpoint, so if you go through that door and you don’t get the trophy because you were too slow, you’ll need to start the chapter again from the start. 

It might help to time yourself in some way, or just restart from checkpoint if you’re not confident in your speed. Maybe do a couple of practice runs.

Actually it doesn’t make for very good screenshots, in general.

The rest of the trophies are pretty simple, just do what the trophy says and you shouldn’t struggle.

My Verdict:


Pass


I don’t recommend this game. It’s not a good game by any measure and despite the saving graces of Deadpool humour and North’s incredible voice role, it’s just not worth any amount of time.

Pros:


  • Nolan North plays Deadpool excellently
  • The humour of Deadpool is somewhat alive in the game.

Cons:


  • Boring repetitive gameplay
  • Stale mechanics
  • Drab level design

Bronze Trophy

Bronze Trophy

I don’t want to give this a trophy, but I loved North’s voicework too much – he really did the role justice, so it gets a bronze at least.

About the Author

TheDblTap is fond of single-player action and adventure games as well as the odd collect-em-up or RPG. He thinks FPS games are stale and repetitive and has little patience for gunfights which are too drawn-out. Originally a Nintendo gamer, the PlayStation line of consoles quickly took their grasp as he fell in love with Sony’s gamer-centric approach and – eventually – collecting shiny, shiny trophies.

With a keen eye for secrets and treasure, TheDblTap’s play-style often benefits him as a trophy hunter, but as someone with poor timing, he struggles with more skill-based combat trophies…

Check out some of our other Posts

Silver Trophy

The Mummy: Demastered, Review

By MrZhangetsu

No Harm Ever Came From Reading a Book!

Movie tie in games are almost as bad as movies that were adapted from video games—just watch anything Uwe Boll directed—but every so often, one of them manages to defy the odds and end up being actually enjoyable. The Mummy: Demastered is one of those games.

Developed my WayForward who created the beloved Shantae series, The Mummy: Demastered is a throwback to pixel graphics and Metroidvania gameplay. Unlike the (truly god awful) movie it’s based on, TM:D is a lot of fun and doesn’t feature Tom Cruise in the slightest. In fact, you play as an unnamed agent of Prodigium and it’s your job to follow Princess Ahmanet through a large map, defeating all her friends in order to stop her from… doing something. So the story is forgettable, but it’s been my experience that Metroidvania games focus more on gameplay than complex storylines and, honestly, I prefer it that way.

Enemies can be tricky to deal with sometimes, but it’s a fun and welcome challenge.

I’m actually not a big fan of Metroidvania games, but playing TM:D was a really fun experience and a nice challenge. I never felt like it was too difficult nor did I feel like the game was taking it easy on me. Any enemy can catch you off guard and you’ll have moments where you go from bad to worse, but it’s okay because when you die, you respawn as a new agent and you get to track down your old zombified corpse to get your gear back. The boss fights feel really fair and the boss designs looked pretty amazing. TM:D almost made me forget the movie it’s based on even existed… almost.

I… am a Librarian!

In traditional Metroidvania fasion, TM:D has a large map which is essentially a bunch of levels all stitched together and in these levels there are always areas that you can’t get to and it will frustrate you until you find a power up that adds the ability to cling to ceilings or run faster and jump higher. The fun then is in backtracking to where you last saw that ledge and hoping something amazing is hiding up there—it’s usually another skill or an item/upgrade—just out of reach. Mostly, you will be rewarded with a new weapon, explosive or an increase to your ammo capacity or health, which you can never have too much of in games like this.

A hidden statue with a scroll inside that give you a cool new ability!

As an agent of Prodigium you have access to many weapons, but you start out with a simple MP5 with has a nice fire rate and OK-ish damage, but it has unlimited ammo so it’s arguably the best weapon for dealing with regular enemies, saving the big guns for the bosses. As good as this starter weapon is, the best weapons in the game are:

  • Assault Rifle – This has high damage and a faster rate of fire which is great for chipping off large portions of the boss’ health quickly.
  • Shotgun – This is great for up close encounters, but rarely useful in boss fights.
  • Cluster Rockets – Good damage but not every rocket is gauranteed to hit.
  • Plasma Beam – The real MVP of the game. The beam does a lot of damage and can chain between enemies. Great for bosses and regular enemies.

Ultimately though, all weapons are pretty decent so it’s down to the individual player how they gear up and take on Ahmanet’s undead friends.

The Clocktower boss was an interesting and challenging fight.

The Journey to The Platinum

TM:D isn’t too hard of a platinum trophy, mostly it asks that you uncover 100% of the map, find all items and… finish the game without dying.

Okay, that last bit sounds a bit rough, but it’s a lot easier than it sounds as the game gives you plenty of opportunities to save your progress—which you can then back up to PS+ or a USB—and enemies drop health when you mow them down. The boss battles are where you’ll likely die the most, especially in the early moments as your health bar will be so small a stiff breeze would kill you, but it’s all part of the fun.

There aren’t any unmissible trophies or any that require complex actions to be taken. Mostly you’ll pop a trophy every time you beat a boss or pick up a scroll/weapon. Just remember to make a save before the final boss so you can go back if you don’t manage to make it back to the surface in one peice. Once you’ve done that, all that’s left is to intentionally die and go kill your zombified corpse and the platinum should pop.

My end game stats.

Tips to Survive!

  • Grab a map so you can mark off each item as you collect them. This will save on confusion later.
  • Try to save every 30 minutes or however long you feel you can comfortably survive.
  • You can farm health by entering a save zone and shooting any boxes and then leave. Rinse and repeat.
  • It’s sometimes better to run around enemies that it is to fight them.
  • It’s probably best to leave any collectibles, scrolls, trinkets and upgrade items until you’ve beaten the Clocktower boss.
  • Learn enemy and boss attack animations so you can better avoid them.
  • Bosses will start to turn red as they get near death.
  • Right after the last boss you will have to make a dash to the surface. Take this area slow and remeber to uncover 100% of the map as you go.

TM:D isn’t all that complicated and you can probably 100% it in one sitting since it’s also entertaining.

What a save room looks like. I guess the agent uploads mission progress to Prodigium HQ or something? I don’t know.

I honestly almost passed on this game after watching the movie, but I managed to catch it on sale and the PS Store trailer looked fun so I took a risk and bought it and I’m glad that I did. WayForward managed to make a great homage to classic gaming with a movie tie in and I think that deserves a medal or at the very least a round of applause.

My Verdict:


Plat


Plat it! The Mummy: Demastered does what the movie it’s based on could not… Make an enjoyable and fun experience. If you like Metroidvania games then you’ll definitely like this one.

Pros:


  • Retro graphics
  • Fast gameplay
  • Cool soundtrack
  • Interesting bosses

Cons:


  • It’s a bit short
  • Can feel a bit floaty at times
  • Enemies hurt you just by touching you (until you get a power up)

Silver Trophy

Silver Trophy

There are no Tom Cruises or bad Hollywood decision makers in this game! The Mummy: Demastered is great!

About the Author

MrZhangetsu has a love for all games and a real talent for FPS games. Spending his childhood thrashing friends in Halo and Call of Duty, his talents lie in accuracy and consistency. This perfect timing comes in handy for all types of skill-based trophies and allows him to face most challenges head-on. His determined focus, however, often means that he misses many opportunities to explore and collect.

Check out some of our other Posts

No trophy

NIPPON MARATHON

By TheDblTap

A NEWGROUNDS FLASH GAME DISGUISED AS A CONSOLE TITLE

Nippon Marathon is an indie on-foot racing platformer. Yourself and your friends or A.I are pit against each other in a 4-man race through various locations in Japan (Nippon, in romanised Japanese, hence the title). 

Every racer is on-screen at once in this top-down racer, and who-ever is in first has camera priority. Falling behind and therefore off-screen will result in elimination and once 3 players have been eliminated the game stops for a moment while points are awarded based on who was eliminated and in what order. Going for a long time without the race being stopped for elimination will result in extra inconveniences and obstacles being introduced to the race track.

Last one to the finish line may well be a rotten egg!

Various obstacles ranging from standard street-clutter to hordes of dogs or a barrage of watermelons will frequently get in your way, eager to cause your character to ragdoll to the ground for a frustrating few seconds as you fruitlessly spam the controller’s face buttons and waggle the joystick in a desperate attempt to de-ragdoll and avoid falling off-screen. There are also item boxes scattered throughout these maps in a very Mario kart way. 

These items are food-based and fairly limited. The game does have a pretty nifty and somewhat unique feature which allows you to choose between weaponising the food item – for example, throwing a watermelon at an enemy – or eating the food item for a speed boost. 

There is one item you don’t want, a stinky mushroom. Hold onto the stinky mushroom for long enough, or eat it, and your character with collapse temporarily. Simply having this item will also reduce your popularity, as you’ll be rather stinky. The stink trails coming off the item will also affect those running behind the wielder. Of course, the solution is to drop it and hope that someone behind you grabs the mushroom, therefore reducing their own popularity.

Popularity is a fairly important value. Avoiding elimination and staying relatively nice-smelling will result in your popularity gauge being quite high, resulting in more points during the final tally at the end of the race.

Things contributing to your final score are eliminations, popularity, final finish-line position and medals. Medals are micro-awards, awarded throughout a race for things like getting the most attention from Shiba inu dogs or eating the most food items.

The last one standing gains a star!

If it wasn’t frustrating enough that the race is frequently stopped and then started up again from a checkpoint every single time 3 players are eliminated, there is also a chance the race will be interrupted for one of the following game-show-esque minigames:

  • Slot Machines: Each player will have a slot machine drop from the sky in front of them. These slot machines will award items to players which they can use to gain an edge over the other racers – if they’re lucky.
  • Interview: A television-star/journalist character will come down onto the track via jetpack to ask the group of racers a question. You will need to construct an answer from 4 parts, each of which you’ll need to select from 4 options which accompany an emoji. Ideally you want to select the options with happier-looking emoji aside them, but here’s the catch: you’re all given the same options and need to select a good option as quickly as possible before somebody else takes it. Provided your answer is good enough you’ll receive a boost in popularity.
  • Maze Race: You and the other players are teleported into a lab-rat maze and need to find your way out. From my experience, there are very few layouts available, so you’ll come to know your way around these mazes pretty quickly until they are no longer a challenge. The reward for finishing the maze first is popularity.

None of these minigames are fun and simply add to the frustrations founded in this game’s constant stop-start nature. It’s like trying to race sports cars while monkeys have control over the brake pedals.

Things contributing to your final score are eliminations, popularity, final finish-line position and medals. Medals are micro-awards, awarded throughout a race for things like getting the most attention from Shiba inu dogs or eating the most food items.

The emoticons in the interview determine how popular your answer will be.

The game is visually painful. Minimal effort has been put into the models and graphics in the game, the illustrated portions look exactly like the average DeviantArt post and the 3D models are… unpleasantly lazy. If you were hoping – as with many indie games – that if the art is bad then the story must be good (or typically vice-versa) you will be disappointed. The story in the game consists of an uncomfortable barrage of small text-heavy cutscenes, one after the other, usually around 4-in-a-row before an actual race starts, this pattern then repeats.

Oh… Okay, then…

You can choose whether to play as one of 4 characters, each of whom has their own story mode, but the actual gameplay is exactly the same and the cutscenes aren’t worth watching – or should I say, reading.

The game isn’t all that bad, though, there are some saving graces.

The sense of humour in the game is very ‘Japanese’, it’s littered with over-the-top inexplicably quirky moments, good enough to get a laugh every once in a while, but the best part of all this is the announcer. His extremely exaggerated Japanese accent and Takeshi’s Castle inspired delivery do actually result in more than a few laughs, and it’s very quotable stuff!

There’s also a couple of party game modes which are far more fun than the actual game and are the only reason I kept this game installed on my PS4, so I could play it with friends in the future. 

The first of these games,  called Go-Go Trolley mode, is a bowling minigame. Except you are the ball. And you need to jump into a shopping cart. And there are sometimes ramps and other obstacles on the alley. It’s good, ridiculous fun. This is where the ragdoll physics in the game actually shine, instead of being a constant hindrance they’re actually part of the process and trying to get your character to ragdoll in just the right way is the best part!

Oua-hoooooo!

The second is a lot like the game-show “Wipeout” also known as “Total Wipeout”. It’s a game of H.O.R.S.E (or “L.O.B.S.T.E.R” in this case), so you need to beat each other’s score by consistently reaching further than each other on the randomly-generated obstacle course, the first person to fail to beat the other’s score receives a letter until they spell the entire word. This game mode is quite fun, however, the random level generation is done by piecing together various pre-built sections, which eventually become repetitive and stale. Sometimes the level even gets generated in an order which is far too difficult to progress through.

Now, while this game is visually trash and technically okay it really shines in multiplayer. With the right group of friends, this game goes from bore to war. High-intensity races against up to 3 other people just as frustrated as you are with the atrocious hit-boxes, hair-trigger ragdoll physics, semi-functional controls and bizarre obstacles are just about as fun as this game gets.

Nippon Marathon Story Trophies

If you’re looking to put in the easy 15 hours to platinum this game, you’ll be wanting to start with the Story Trophies.

There are 4 story-related trophies in this game’s very short trophy list, one for each of the characters that you can play as. The “cutscenes” will be different depending on the character you use, but the actual gameplay is exactly the same. 

You will need to complete the same 8 races in the same order 4 times over. And no, the fact that you’re playing as different characters won’t change anything as they’re purely cosmetic and don’t have any differing stats or skills, you just need to put in the time and do the story 4 times. 

Luckily, you can skip the cutscenes by pausing the game and selecting to do so in the menu, so you won’t have to sit through all four of their totally uninteresting stories just for the opportunity to repeat the same few races 4 times… unless you really want to I guess.

I found a good strategy for consistently doing well in this game’s races was to just eat all the edible items you get – for a speed boost – and drop any mushrooms you grab.

Launching watermelons at characters or using a pineapple as a balloon to jump further (don’t ask, because I don’t know…) is all well and good, except it doesn’t really matter. The AI is likely to trip over the game’s janky hit-boxes and awkward track layouts anyway so your best bet is to just do your best to stay in first. Eating lots of items will also give you a medal at the end with a very welcome score boost.

Don’t forget that popularity is important too, so do your best to succeed in the irritating mini-games and avoid mushrooms.

Also, while you’re doing these story missions, look out for Wedy pages.

Nippon Marathon Wedy Pages

Wedy pages are the game’s collectibles. Wedy is the bizarre journalist I mentioned earlier, the one with the jetpack, yeah.

She appears to run some sort of tourist magazine and inexplicably all the pages from your copy have been scattered throughout Nippon. Of course, rather than grabbing a new copy like a normal person, you’re going to look for each of these pages like the weirdo you are.

The pages are fairly easy to find, just make sure that you’re not already holding the maximum number of items (2, one per hand) so that when you run over a page you can hold it. It doesn’t matter what you do with it once you’ve grabbed it. As long as it’s in your hand at some point, you’ve collected it. However, you will want to hold or to eat at least one page for one of this trophy:

Xylophagia Eat a Wedy Page and gain nothing but protein

Handily, each page is numbered, so you can check the magazine in the main menu to see which pages you’ve managed to collect and google-troubleshoot the ones you’re struggling with.

There are just a few slightly-less-easy-to-find pages dotted around Nippon that you’ll want to keep an eye out for:

  • On the river-side level, which eventually experiences an earthquake causing signs to fall down upon the racers, and the ground to break away, there is a downhill section which breaks into 2, causing racers to begin sliding rapidly down the track. At this point, you want to try and cause the round to restart by getting far enough ahead – or having 3 players die – so that everyone will respawn at the nearest checkpoint, which is just before the break in the track where there is now some exposed pipes. One of these pipes is home to a Wedy page. This sounds tricky, but it almost always happens naturally just because the next part of the track is a little tricky, particularly for the AI. The tricky part is getting to the page before an AI racer does, as they can and will pick up the page by running over it, meaning you’ll need to restart.
  • On one memorable level, you start on the roof of a train and eventually jump off at a train station. At some point, you will come to a yellow door just after some stairs, head inside for another Wedy page.
  • There’s a very traditionally-Japanese level with zen gardens, monks taking tests and paper sliding doors. Shortly after leaving a room full of Monks sitting at school desks you will come to a very memorable section with a very sharp turn which you can bypass by naruto-running under a hole in the dividing wall. If you skip this shortcut and head to the far right edge of the screen there’s a bench with a Wedy page on it.
  • On the level where everyone is giant, toward the beginning, there is a slanted building with 4 yellow dancers on top. Jump and dive to the freeway to the left and the page is up there.
  • On the last level in story mode in which everybody is Kaiju-sized, there’s a conveniently ramp-shaped building near the start with 4 ridiculous men dancing on top of it. You’re going to want to run up to where they are and then immediately jump and dive to the left of the building (top of the screen) onto the highway where you’ll find a Wedy page.

The thinner left-most pipe is where you’ll find the tricky Wedy page on the earthquake-riddled stage.

Just to reiterate, it’s very important that when you see a page you try and get to it before the AI can, as they will collect the page for themselves and it won’t respawn unless you restart the level.

Once you have them all, you should get this trophy:

Travelling Enlightened Collect all Wedy Pages and become a Legendary Backpacker

Nippon Marathon Miscellaneous Trophies

Most trophies will unlock naturally as you go through the story 4 times over and any extra times you need to do a level for Wedy pages, except the following few:

I just felt like runnin’ Finish a full marathon

Yeah so… Marathon mode is all 8 races in order, essentially story mode again but this time without the pointless cutscenes. At least it’s an extra 5th chance to look for Wedy pages I suppose.

You love the Dog Choose Snuguru Maestro 25 times in Versus Mode

Fortunately, this trophy doesn’t mean you need to play an extra 25 races in versus mode. Although, as I said, the game is pretty fun with friends, so if you have somebody willing to play 25 races with you for the sake of it, just make sure you pick Snuguru Maestro every time. 

Snuguru is the better-looking character to be fair.

If you’d rather not do that – understandably – then you can just start go into Versus mode, select “single race” and then choose Snuguru Maestro as your character, but then back out without pressing “ready”. That’ll count as one. Just repeat that 25 times and bingo was his name-o. 

Poor man’s Chicken Traverse 200 metres in LOBSTER mode

This one’s tricky, due to the randomly-generated nature of the L.O.B.S.T.E.R mode levels. You really need the conditions to be just right to be able to reach 200 metres without great difficulty. At certain points in the game, the level will be re-generated, so it’s worth just playing this game mode with a friend – like I did – and then hoping the right conditions are met and one of you makes it over 200 metres.

Despite how tricky it is, it’s probably one of the most fun things to do in this mess of a game.

The trophy is also bugged, of course. When I was going for this trophy, I made it over the 200m threshold multiple times but the trophy wouldn’t pop. So bear in mind you may need to attempt this multiple times.

It helps to note that if a friend manages to reach over 200m this could also trigger the trophy for you, as long as your account launched the game.

Turkey Trolley Get 3 Strikes in a row in Go-Go Trolley Bowling

This one’s quite tricky, due to the fairly sensitive nature of the trolley’s trajectory, you’ll need to use some strategy and care to get 3 strikes in a row. The game will also randomly add ramps and obstacles to the alley after a few rounds, making it even more difficult to set things up right. I just played with a friend as, just like the above trophy, if they manage to fulfil the constraints you’ll get the trophy too.

Eventually, we figured out a decent method:

  • Place the trolley as far forward and as centred as you can.
  • Don’t run and leap into the trolley like the game wants you to, slowly approach it and lightly tap it, trying to keep it aligned so it doesn’t veer off course afterwards.
  • Once the trolley is moving, run and leap down the alley yourself, pressing [square] to throw yourself for extra speed and distance. 
  • When you’re sliding, you can use the [left stick] to navigate left and right slightly, try to aim yourself towards any pins the trolley missed and knock them down, if you’re fast enough you can get a strike by cheesing it in this way.

You will want to place the Trolley here

Repeat the above 3 times and if you’re lucky you’ll get the trophy.

It’s also worth noting that people have reported this trophy is buggy also and you may have to pull off this same feat multiple times until the trophy finally pops.

All in all, Nippon Marathon is a weakly structured attempt at a unique racing game. When compared to better games of the same type, such as Sprint Vector or Rayman M, it’s quite clear this game falls short at almost every turn. The only things saving this unpolished mess of a game is how much more fun you can have on it with a friend.

My Verdict:


Pass


If you’re scraping the bottom of the barrel for fun party games, you could get a few hours of fun with friends out of Nippon Marathon. Otherwise, though, it isn’t even worth getting the game for its relatively easy plat. Give this one a pass, play something better, you owe it to yourself.

Pros:


  • Fun with friends

Cons:


  • Poorly built and unpolished
  • Buggy trophies
  • Irritating stop-and-start gameplay

No trophy

No Trophy

I’d have to be insane to award this game so much as a bronze trophy. It would be an insult to other games to offer this one any recognition.

About the Author

TheDblTap is fond of single-player action and adventure games as well as the odd collect-em-up or RPG. He thinks FPS games are stale and repetitive and has little patience for gunfights which are too drawn-out. Originally a Nintendo gamer, the PlayStation line of consoles quickly took their grasp as he fell in love with Sony’s gamer-centric approach and – eventually – collecting shiny, shiny trophies.

With a keen eye for secrets and treasure, TheDblTap’s play-style often benefits him as a trophy hunter, but as someone with poor timing, he struggles with more skill-based combat trophies…

Check out some of our other Posts

No trophy

TWIN ROBOTS

By TheDblTap

NOT ALL PLATINUMS ARE CREATED EQUAL

Twin Robots was developed by Thinice Studios and published by Ratalaika Games. If you, too, are a trophy hunter then Ratalaika is an all-too familiar name. You’ll see that little pixelated German shepard in your mind and maybe feel a little excited. Why? 

That all-too-familiar logo.

Because they’re the Kings of easy plats. Whenever a Ratalaika game gets published it’s almost always easy to acquire the platinum. It would appear that this is part of their marketing strategy. In order to convince the masses to purchase their selection of truly forgettable indie games, Ratalaika appear to suggest to the developers that an easily achieved platinum is the key to success… And it works!

As it turns out, it’s not a marketing ploy. Ratalaika simply port indie games to PS4 and have stated that in order to reduce the amount of time their team needs to spend bug-testing platinum triggers they typically place all trophies within the first few hours of a game so their team don’t need to play it too much. I mean, sure, that makes sense but it’s also quite a lazy approach, isn’t it? Either way, I suppose it works in their favour.

Trophy hunters everywhere, including myself and MrZhangetsu, scrape the barrel-bottom for their games so that in just a mere couple of hours our shiny platinum collection can be a tiny bit larger. 

This is a tale of how Twin Robots killed that habit… 

Ratalaika Weekends

At the height of our obsession with easy Platinums, MrZhangetsu and I would collect 10-15 of Ratalaika’s indie games or similarly poor-quality easy platinums and then meet up on a Weekend to complete them all. 

Here’s the full list of easy 5-hour-or-less easy platinum games we completed on these weekends:

  • My Name is Mayo
  • Mr. Massagy
  • 36 Fragments of Midnight
  • Claire
  • Goosebumps: The Game
  • Metropolis: Lux Obscura
  • Coffin Dodgers
  • Nubla
  • Inksplosion
  • Super Destronaut DX
  • Hex Tunnel Touch
  • Tetra’s Escape
  • The Long Reach
  • Jack N Jill DX
  • Midnight Deluxe
  • Burly Men at Sea
  • The Bunker
  • Access Denied
  • Storm Boy
  • Drowning
  • Planet-RX
  • Daggerhood
  • Heroes Trials
  • Albedo: Eyes From Outer Space
  • FullBlast
  • Dying: Reborn
  • Squareboy VS Bullies
  • Metagal
  • Peasant Knight
  • Devious Dungeon
  • Super Weekend Mode
  • Shadow of Loot Box

Some of these were much worse than others. Hex Tunnel Touch for example, was a horrendous and rage-fuelling nightmare of a game which offered nothing in the realms of fun, whereas Metropolis: Lux Obscura was a fun and unique puzzle-fighter type game with a lot of interesting twists and turns to keep you on your toes and enjoy the whole game from start to plat. 

Once the well began to run dry these weekends became sparse and we would find and plat an easy game every once in a while solo instead. This actually killed a lot of the fun. Without another there to share your exasperation at these terrible games it becomes more of a chore to complete them, cue Twin Robots…

Playing Twin Robots

Twin Robots is a very basic platforming game, you move through a side-scrolling level, jump from platform to platform in order to navigate, and try not to get killed by spike traps, saw blade traps, and lasers. 

These levels are extremely bland with hardly any colour or interesting lighting. Almost zero effort has been put in to make the place look like a laboratory or a factory or anything even remotely imaginative, it’s all just flat untextured shiny block after flat untextured shiny block.

Extremely bland visuals

Their ultimately irritating attempt at making the usual platforming formula a little more exciting is to add a second character, hence; Twin Robots. 

At the start of every level one of the robots is imprisoned and the other is not. The goal is to head out into the level looking for a switch which will free your twin, and then reach the goal with both robots. This is pretty tricky when everything in the level is an untextured block without much to indicate where you are in order to help you navigate.

Your imprisoned Twin

Jumping uses energy which you can recover from glowing tiles on the ground, running over them will recharge the robot. Running out of energy results in the robot “dying”. You can also magically transfer some energy from one robot to the other when necessary. It’s okay to reach the goal with only one robot, but if you want that shiny platinum you obviously need to be finishing levels with both robots intact. 

Dying is all too easy when the majority of the traps have oversized or misaligned hit-boxes and all it takes is a slight tap from one of these to damage your robot eventually resulting in the need for a level reset. This rinse-and-repeat process gets extremely irritating when 90% of level resets are down to the game being unpolished.

Spikes are an instant kill

The devs also made the inconceivably irritating decision to include semi-realistic physics to certain objects in the game. At some points you will need to activate a switch by placing a block on it, standard platformer shenanigans, except the blocks are physics enabled and weigh about the same as an empty cardboard box. 

To move these blocks around you don’t push them, pick them up, or have any real control about where they’re going, you just have to run at them and launch them and hope that they land somewhere reasonable. You can make minor adjustments by giving the objects small taps from the side by inching towards them, but due to the unpolished and glitchy nature of the game, this will sometimes result in the block being launched at light speed somewhere entirely undesired.

Immediately after taking this screenshot, the physics block hit the darker robot, launching the block off screen to the right at hyperspeed

Speaking of glitches, the doors are just about the most broken part of Twin Robots. If you get too close to a closed door the robot will actually clip through it and, oh boy, does the PS4 not like that. The game will slow to around three frames-per-second while you wrestle with the controller to try and free yourself from this before the game can crash or your PS4 can explode. Couple this with physics-enabled boxes which frequently get accidentally launched right up against these doors and you have a very bad time on your hands.

Platting Twin Robots

Acquiring the plat for this game is simple enough in theory. There are 28 levels to complete, each more difficult than the last. And when I say difficult, I don’t mean difficult, I mean horrendously boring and down-right frustrating. The amount of times you’ll die from hitting nothing, or get stuck in a door, or fall prey to spontaneous defiance of physics, or some other irritating factor of this poorly made game and then have to restart that level is innumerably infuriating, especially towards the end.

This would be much less of a pain if you could simply complete the level with only one robot, but no, you want that plat? You save them both.

Imagine thinking to yourself one day, “what’s a good mechanic for my new indie game? I know, I’ll make everyone complete every level at least twice.” Because that’s what the devs at Thinice thought would be a great idea by asking that you rescue both robots.

Most of my trophies wouldn’t pop unless I quit the game and reloaded it

As well as this, some levels contain batteries. These useful pickups give your robot a large boost in energy, filling the meter entirely. A good tip with these is to transfer almost all your energy to the second robot before picking one up as then you’ll have both robots at full capacity. Some levels don’t contain a battery and levels 12 and 13 contain 2 batteries. Luckily you can track this from the level select because you need to find and collect them all for the platinum. Don’t worry, they’re not very well-hidden.

Level Select

If you can do all that, all that’s left is to die in various different ways for each associated trophy and then complete a few simple misc trophies. Here’s a stupid one:

Frogger Jump 75 times in one level, using the same robot

Really? That’s the exciting and fulfilling challenge Ratalaika could come up with? Jump 75 times?… Jeez.

How about this one too:

I am the One Who Knocks Run against a closed door

How can this not be intentional? The closed doors cause the game to freak out and drop frames at an alarming rate, it’s the one most specifically broken part of the game which, if the devs are too lazy or unskilled to fix it, you’d imagine they’d want to hide. Apparently not. They appear to be proud of the way it makes even my PS4 Pro scream in agony.

As you can see, it is an easy platinum and if it weren’t for the multiple cons and irritations of this game I’d have no problem, but it’s just a lazily made platforming game with what vaguely resembles a unique and interesting mechanic lightly draped over it.

No More Platinum Bore

This game was my breaking point. I realised I wasn’t having fun playing these games just so the number of platinums I earned would go up. Pair that with the satisfaction I got from finally getting the Beat Saber platinum or having the fastest Platinum time for Sprint Vector and I slowly but surely made the decision to stop playing games just because the time-to-plat is less than 5 hours. Sure, I might miss out on the odd hidden gem in Ratalaika’s alarmingly fast-growing library of indie games, but it’s better than wasting my own time and money playing these atrocious games just to arbitrarily add another number to my total plat count. 

In a recent discussion with MrZhangetsu we came to the conclusion that the value in a platinum is self-assigned, and doesn’t it really need to be that way? When you can earn the same thing from playing half a Ratalaika game that you can earn from putting 300 hours into Monster hunter, Ratalaika reduce the base value of a Platinum with each game that they release until that shiny total platinum number becomes utterly meaningless. So what we are really collecting here is stories, memories, mementos of the time and effort you put into a game, so why collect 50 platinums that mean nothing to yourself or anyone else, when you can put in the time for 1 extremely meaningful platinum that you can be proud to own?

My Verdict:


Pass


Don’t play this. If the boring gameplay, unpleasant visuals and poor coding doesn’t put you off this game, and you haven’t yet reached breaking point when it comes to easy plats, then by all means waste 3 hours playing it, but it’s certainly not worth any amount of money and won’t leave you happy or even satisfied.

Pros:


  • 2-3 hour platinum

Cons:


  • Horrendous physics
  • Tedious gameplay
  • Ugly aesthetic
  • Lovingly sprinkled with glitches and general laziness

No trophy

No Trophy

This is one of the worst Ratalaika “Easy Plats” I’ve ever had to endure and by no means deserves a trophy of any kind.

About the Author

TheDblTap is fond of single-player action and adventure games as well as the odd collect-em-up or RPG. He thinks FPS games are stale and repetitive and has little patience for gunfights which are too drawn-out. Originally a Nintendo gamer, the PlayStation line of consoles quickly took their grasp as he fell in love with Sony’s gamer-centric approach and – eventually – collecting shiny, shiny trophies.

With a keen eye for secrets and treasure, TheDblTap’s play-style often benefits him as a trophy hunter, but as someone with poor timing, he struggles with more skill-based combat trophies…

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