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Newt One PC Review with Stream

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Muted Newt

While not currently the most loved of genres, 3D platformers have a rich history in gaming. The range in subject matter is vast, but at the heart of it you will play as a 3D character jumping from platform to platform in order to solve a puzzle, or collect one of many items, or to just make it to the next point in the level. More recently, there has been a push for modern platformers to be artistic and try to break the mold and add another layer to the normal genre, and Newt One aims to fill that need.

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You play as Newt, who seems to be some kind of mage or bard who is thrust into a world devoid of color, and it’s up to you to bring back happiness and color back to the world. You do this by simply touching every object in the level to bring back its color and animations. Newt can also rescue parrots and collect song notes to enhance the atmosphere. The color in the environment is set to 11 as it just screams fantasy world and is just bursting at the seams with bright primary colors that only want to make you see more as you slowly release the color explosions from their drab grey prisons. Even when not looking at the bright environment, the soundtrack will keep you engaged with its Spanish guitar style with happy and fun themes.

While the color and sound are on point, that is where things start to drop off. The movement of Newt is very annoying, as it feels like being on an ice level in Mario, where your initial movement and stopping controls are very loose. With such small platforms to land on, including a group of owls, it seems almost sadistic to add this movement control.  The graphics are nothing to write home about, he character designs while colorful are graphically pretty terrible, and it doesn’t seem to be by choice, just by bad design. Even something simple as jumping from platform, which you need to do literally all the time in this genre, is weird as the animation for jumping includes Newt expelling some kind of magical gas from beneath his model so it looks not unlike a fart. I realize that the nature of this aesthetic seems to be aimed at kids, but I don’t know if they meant it to come off that way or not.

The developers, Dev and Ari of DevNAri are just a two man team making this, so its hard to give them too much issue with programming and character model issues. They have made it clear that this game is non-violent so you don’t affect anything negatively in the game, thereby making a positive environment to explore. This idea isn’t without merit, but getting rid of the grey and rescuing the birds come off as more of a chore then they are challenges, which even the most basic game must have.  Games are meant to have struggle, even its most simple form of wanting something and not being able to get it. But here there is no real struggle, just repeating an action to get more of a good looking environment.  It’s a good step in the right direction, especially for such a small team, and while I do appreciate their firm belief and dedication to their form, there are too many issues to keep gamers coming back for more, even if they are children.

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