REVIEW – Save the Furries! (Wiiware)
A Game Review by Greg Dabkey
Game – Save the Furries!
Version – Wiiware
ESRB Rating: ‘E 10+’ – Everyone 10 and up
Obtained – Review copy purchased courtesy of SDPGames
Save the Furries is a strategy/puzzle game where the player must save the Furries from their potential death. The Furries leave their ship and traverse the land in search of their destination. The player must assist them by making paths and guiding them away from enemies or hazards. The game is similar to an NES game called Lemmings, but with controlling more of the environment and not the Furries themselves.
Gameplay & Controls
The gameplay is quite simple and basic, allow the Furries to reach their destination platform from their spaceship. Along the way, the player must manipulate objects to clear a path and also be on the lookout for dangers while the Furries are in motion. The objects that the player can manipulate can crush the Furries or launch them across the screen along with providing a floor for them to walk on. The player needs to have a plan so that the Furries can make it safely to the finish.
The gameplay is quite good, there are not many games with this style and it felt interactive while making the player stay mindful of what is going on within the level. Some levels allow you to go into areas one at a time and others you need to prepare the entire path before allowing your Furries to proceed. There are even some levels where you must act quickly or the Furries will walk into spikes or fall to their deaths. The player can also collect silver and gold medals along the way which are located in harder to reach places.
The controls use the standard Wii Remote and it’s point and click functionality. The player can manipulate slings, move boxes or platforms, a cart among some other objects. This is where the game loses some points though as it’s not as easy as it sounds. Platforms can be turned vertical or horizontal and I had some trouble standing a piece upright and keeping the horizontal one level so the furries don’t get slid off. When you try to air lift them it becomes difficult to keep the platform flat or raising it in the air vertically. Also adjusting the slings was a little difficult as well as there are parts where you don’t want to launch them too high and it felt difficult to manipulate it perfectly.
While rotating or aiming can be a little difficult, the player can adjust to the controls pretty easily. As for the specific controls, the player presses and holds B to grab a hold of objects and use the left, right, up, down motions to move the objects or aim objects in the proper direction. The player can use the control pad to zoom in or out to see the action up close or get a view of the entire level. Also the player can press and hold A to grip the level and move up, down, left or right to drag the screen in the desired direction.
There is the main story mode where the player selects the planet to travel to, and by selecting on the sun the player can see the options and menus. There are 6 planets with 10 levels each for the player to solve. Within the options menu, the player can select Fast Play to immediately play the latest level they are on. The player can also adjust the sound and music settings, view the credits, view different cinematics and also their achievements. The cinematics are just the videos that the player encounters while playing, like the intro video and the Furries victory ride after a level is completed. The achievements are actually pretty fun to get. There are some where you must kill your Furries along with those relating to the different objectives to complete such as rescuing them all, or performing a stunt.
Visuals & Sound
The graphics and visuals have their own unique design to them. While the design is kept pretty basic on the Furries and enemies, the levels are designed around planet’s theme. The larger enemies have more details than the Furries and look well designed. The stages are also good looking as well with the details on the platforms, traps and objects to interact with (such as boxes, logs, bombs, etc). The backgrounds give each level more feel in the environment the player is in. The Furries themselves along with their spaceship and the medals are very basic design. When the player is all the way zoomed in, some of the graphics become somewhat blurry and not very impressive. Also, the logs and boxes have 4 arrows one going in each direction. My first time playing I had thought the logs were just smaller boxes since the arrow design was the same and since the arrows basically make the log shape hard to see, it cost me some of my Furries lives as they were rolling on the log into the spikes below the log.
The game as a few number of tracks and they are about a minute or two long and repeats itself. The tracks are not very impressive either and just basic combinations of tones with some guitar and drum sounds. The sound effects are pretty standard. The bombs have a good explosion sound effect along the catapult items. The Furries make interesting sounds, as when they are squished it sounds pretty impressive. They also do a cheer when they reach the goal which sounds good as well.
7 out of 10
Save the Furries is a pretty fun real time strategy/puzzle game. While the controls can be a little difficult, they aren’t completely hindering to the experience as the levels vary with the traps. There is not a specific time limit or any restrictions on number of retries so the player can keep replaying the level as needed. The graphics and music could be a little better, but it is a downloadable game and not a full-fledged game. I would recommend this game to people who enjoy strategy/puzzle games.