By Justin Guillou / July 17th, 2014
|Title||Electronic Super Joy: Groove City|
|Developer||Michael Todd Games, Yazar Media Group LLC|
|Publisher||Yazar Media Group LLC|
|Release Date||Jun 6, 2014|
Did anyone call for some more difficult platforming mayhem? Electronic Super Joy: Groove City is out to satisfy that craving for games that really test your reflexes and pattern memorization. I missed out on the first game, but watched videos of it, so I knew immediately what I was getting myself into. I jumped into this one expecting to find the same kind of challenging levels from the first game. While the game definitely delivers to an extent, it also managed to disappoint me in some ways.
The story takes place some time after the events of the first game. Groove City has been rebuilt, and, as the screenshot above implies, it is a happy place! You are walking around minding your own business when the city suddenly falls under attack by a giant robot stripper named Jojo. Before you ask, she does not have a star tattoo or yell “ORA ORA ORA ORA!” It is your job to investigate why Jojo is so angry, and figure out what plans the evil Dr. Swinger has up his sleeve. You are assisted throughout the game by Pope Boris the Super Sexy! As you can see, this game has quite the plot. It works for what it is, and never takes itself too seriously. The NPCs have very interesting and rather humorous remarks to what is going on as you play.
Your character can only run and jump. That’s right, two buttons, just like the good old days! Well, I guess, technically three since there is a Retry button which allows your character to respawn faster than if you were to watch the death animation! Gone is the stomp from the first game, which threw me off initially. I kept thinking that maybe I had to unlock it later on, but, eventually I realized it just simply is not in the game. It isn’t clear why this was removed, but I guess you can make an argument that the stomp is not all that necessary to get past this game. Groove City has an emphasis on short jumping, which is performed by pressing the jump button right before you land on a platform, making your character hop.
The removal of the stomp is not the only thing that makes Groove City feel like a toned-down experience. There are only about 15 levels this time around, compared to the original game’s 40+. Seriously, what is the reason for the lack of content? This is something that makes the game seem more like an expansion than an actual sequel. I completed the game in a little over an hour, which is actually disappointingly short. I should also put this out there: I was very horrible at it! I died many times during certain spots of the game, and spent far more time in certain segments than I probably should have. The only real replay value here is to see how fast you can complete the game. If you are really good you can complete it MUCH faster than I did. In fact, I saw a run where someone completed the game in ten minutes! Other than speed-running, there are eight achievements for you to score. However, they are so easy to obtain, you will likely get most of them on your first run. Once again, this is really small compared to the amount of achievements the first game had.
Your main enemies will be turrets that fire homing missiles that which relentlessly follow you as you try to hop from platform to platform. You’ll also come across weird-looking characters that crawl along the ground as you land on platforms. There are also moving spikes, and platforms that blow up a couple seconds after being landed on thrown in to attempt to make your life hell. Despite these obstacles, the overall difficulty is only hard until you start to get used to the mechanics.
Groove City retains the original’s visual style. I mentioned in my Danmaku Unlimited 2 review that you should play that game at a rave to get the party going. Groove City outclasses it in every way possible. This game is BRIGHT. And, as a result, I have to give an even bigger warning than I did for Danmaku Unlimited 2. If you are bothered by bright flashing lights, or are unable to handle them properly, beware! I would even go as far as to recommend playing it in a well-lit room.
The music is still really catchy. But, since the experience is so brief, you never really get to hear the songs for too long. I noticed that, as I played, I would try to jump on platforms to the beat of the song playing. It is kind of a reflex of mine and for some reason, just feels appropriate for this game. One funny touch is that every time you restart at a checkpoint you are treated to a hilarious OOOH YEEAAA or UUHHHH YEEAAAAAAAAAA…..And that is a perk of doing a written review: I will not traumatize you all by forcing you to hear me imitate those moans! Unless my readers wan-…What am I saying? Moving on.
Overall, Electronic Super Joy Groove City is a tough game to recommend even though it only costs $5. On one hand, it can be a fun experience. On the other hand, it might be worth it to spend a few dollars more and pick up the first game instead. You get a similar gameplay experience, but with more levels and features. If you already own the first one and played it to death, but want more, then Groove City may be worth picking up.
Game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.
Electronic Super JoyElectronic Super Joy Groove CityPCSteam