REVIEW: Aero Porter

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Aero Porter Title: Aero Porter
Publisher: Level-5
Developer: Vivarium
Console: Nintendo 3DS
Release Date: November 29th 2012
Genre: Puzzle, Simulation
Rating: ESRB E
Official Website

Honestly, I don’t know what I was expecting from Aero Porter. I realize that the Guild01 games are supposed to be different from each other and have nothing to do with on another. But after playing through Liberation Maiden, a fine, quirky shooter from Suda51…

I couldn’t tell you what to expect from Aero Porter. For all I knew, it was a flight simulator. Maybe it was a Harvest Moon-type game where you had to run the airport from being a hodunk little place into an International stop. Maybe you were just a guy going through a bunch of airports going from city to city.

Whatever I thought it was, I wasn’t expecting this.

Aero PorterCreated by Yoot Saito, founder of developer Vivarium – they’ve created games like the construction simulator The Tower for GBA and Nintendo DS, pet simulator Seaman for Dreamcast and PS2, and the pinball wargame Odama for the GameCube – Aero Porter is a puzzle game – it’s listed as a simulation game but it’s more puzzle than simulator. You work as a bag sort at an airport. The more bags you sort onto their proper planes, the more people you get through, the more money you make. Simple enough…

…until they start adding on more baggage carousels. You also need to manage the fuel that runs the carousel. And you’ll need to get rid of any dangerous packages quickly or your work day is over.

There is very little to talk about Aero Porter. You hit the L and R buttons to move packages up and down to the proper carousel. You hit Y to order fuel, which you need to move down below the carousels. You can hit left and right on the D-pad to speed up or slow down the carousel. And when you’re ready to load onto a plane, hit A. The only sound is the ambiance from the airport; i.e. no music.

Aero Porter

Get used to this. It will be the norm.

It’s as close to minimalism without feeling ripped off. It’s also one of the most challenging games you’ll play.

When you upgrade to the Space Port – which will also unlock StreetPass functionality – you’ll have seven carousels you’ll have to run. Each carousel will have a plane you’ll have to load between 3 and 5 packages. And each plane is usually timed to go after two minutes. It may not sound too bad but I guarantee you will have trouble.

This game starts out rather well, teaching you how to run the carousel. But the difficulty in the game will ramp up very quickly, causing misplaced baggages, cancellations, exploding bombs, and headaches (for the player). If you’re a perfectionist, I suggest not playing this game. You’ll feel like crap afterward.

Overall, Aero Porter starts out well but becomes nearly unbearable rather quickly. If you’re able to play through this minimalistic challenge, more power to ya. But for a puzzle game that feels like it’s pushing you to your breaking point, I just found mine.

Review Score

About Jeff Neuenschwander

Jeff has been a supporter of the website and campaign since the beginning. Joining in for E3 2012, he worked his way up the ranks quickly, making it to the Editing Manager post at the beginning of 2013. Jeff has a wide variety of tastes when it comes to gaming and pretty much likes anything that is quirky, although his favorite genres are Action, Platforming, and RPG. Outside of gaming, Jeff is a musician, being trained as a trombonist for Jazz and Classical music, and holds a degree in Sound Recording.