Pixel has been compared to Miyamoto for his ability to teach without tutorials. Indeed, Cave Story shares many traits with Miyamoto's magnum opus (Mario, not Zelda): bare-bones plot, but amazing gameplay and music. What makes this even more astonishing is that this was all made by one man over the course of three years. Let's see Cave Story's strengths and flaws:
- Graphics: 7/10. Nothing special here.
- Story: 6/10. Cave Story's plot is really lacking. The characters are shallow, the story's easy to grasp, there isn't much to it. All I can say for it is that it's at least more complex than your average Kirby plot.
- Gameplay: 10/10. What it lacks in story, it makes up for in GAMEPLAY. The gameplay is smooth, easy to grasp yet consistently difficult (the comparison to Miyamoto is not undeserved)...in short, the gameplay is amazing. This game proves that linearity is not a bad thing at all: indeed, in the hands of those as skillful as Pixel, it is quite the opposite.
- Music: 10/10. While the soundtrack is impressive by itself, it is made even better when you consider it was composed by one man. The music can evoke whatever the hell it wants to: fear (Oppression), sadness (Moonsong), calm (Geothermal, Balcony) or even OH YEAH! (Balrog's Theme)
- Overall: 9/10. This masterpiece is only hampered by its story, and even then its lack of plot can be excused by the sheer effort and time needed to create a complex one. Download it, or buy it on Steam or Wii Ware. This is a must-have for any respectable indie gamer.
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