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Pid (Xbox 360) Review

 
Pid Review Logo
Pid Review Logo
Pid Review Logo

 
At a Glance...
 

Formats: PS3, Xbox 360 & PC
 
Genre: ,
 
Year:
 
Publisher:
 
Developer:
 
Final Score
7.5
7.5/ 10


User Rating
2 total ratings

 

We liked?


  • Gorgeous to look at and wonderfully realised world & characters
  • Classic retro platform/puzzle action harking back to 8-bit era
  • Challenging

Not so much?


  • Uneven difficulty
  • Lack of required precision in control
  • High frustration factor


Final Fiendish Findings?

Pid has some great things going for it. Well realised dream world. Impressive art style. A great hark back to the older titles that relied on puzzle rooms and slow, steady exploration of a unique and quirky world.

It’s just a shame the difficulty is relentless and so uneven in places. If the game had employed an energy bar or life based system then maybe, just maybe, we’d be looking at one of the platformers of the year

0
Posted November 15, 2012 by

 
Full Fiendish Findings...
 
 

Pid makes one of the most earnest attempts I’ve yet seen at capturing the glory days of titles like Jet Set Willy, or Manic Miner. The titles I grew up with as a kid. The ones that pitted you against a series of puzzle based platform areas and asked you to navigate them, exploring a surreal world and solving simple puzzles. Oh and they were also ridiculously hard too!

Pid has you inhabit a dream world. You can tell it’s a massive dream world from the look at feel of the world alone. Fantastical characters that are larger than life all inhabit a mundane and workman like world. Each area of the world at juxtaposition to the floaty and ethereal visuals and everyday life locations – a dusty attic or through some dining rooms.

What elevates Pid’s world from fantasy to dreamscape is the general glow of the world and the purposeful, yet overly light, movement of main character Kurt. Kurt is on his way home from school on an intergalactic school bus when he nods off on the way. Here you must help Kurt find his way off the planet he has found himself on and back to a bus home.

Visually the game is a real treat. The characters are angular and quirky but all animate oh-so well. The environments, although commonplace, are infused with enough dream-like emphasis you feel taken to this dream world with ease.

Pid Review

Kurt controls well enough for the most part. His languid jumps can get a little too imprecise at times and the games hook mechanic, a set of light beams, can get a little messy to use at times. These beams of light act like portable rapid deployment hover pads. Drop one of your two beams on the ground or wall and a short beam jets out. Some surfaces, like metal surfaces or spiked areas, can’t support your beam. Kurt can then ride this light beam to higher places. You can also alternate these to “climb” to higher obstacles. The whole thing works very well and offers a very satisfying mixture of environment traversal puzzling as well as platforming.

These light beams not only act as transport though as they can also come in to play to solve puzzles too. Use one beam to levitate a box up to depress a ceiling mounted switch whilst using another to transport Kurt over an obstacle and through the door the switch has opened. The beams can be a little fiddly at times and frustration can arise with simply glitches that cause you to die. These are forgivable though but it does lead me to my first real issue – difficulty.

Now anyone who knows me will tell you, I love me a hard platformer. Super Meat Boy – love it. But what that game managed to do was give you pin-point accurate controls. Almost every single death in Super Meat Boy was down to one thing – you! In Pid though you die and a lot of the time you’re not fully sure – was it me or the game that screwed up? The difficulty in Pid is all over the place. The game has a one hit kill mechanic (or two if you manage to locate or buy a protective vest) that is both a source of motivation and frustration.

You see beneath the pastel shades, the quirky visuals and floaty dream-world beats the heart of a cold callus beast. The game is cruel to the extreme at many an occasion, throwing pin-point platforming in with complex beam manipulation and enemies armed with rockets. Each small slip could be instant death. At least the checkpoints are frequent but it can just be so frustrating you want to throw something at times. That’s bad enough – but do you fancy one hit kill boss encounters too? Not to mention that when you’re faced with these more stressed situations the slight flaws and gripes about the imprecision of the jump of the beam mechanics snowball in to real problems. Too often you feel robbed of well earned progress by Kurt’s languid jump just clipping a rocket as it passes.

Final Thoughts

Pid has some great things going for it. Well realised dream world. Impressive art style. A great hark back to the older titles that relied on puzzle rooms and slow, steady exploration of a unique and quirky world.

It’s just a shame the difficulty is relentless and so uneven in places. If the game had employed an energy bar or life based system then maybe, just maybe, we’d be looking at one of the platformers of the year.

As it stands Pid is a solid game, and will offer great value for money. Be warned though that under the soft focused exterior the game is unnecessarily cruel and degenerates in to pure frustration at times – especially in the later stages.  The co-op play is a nice addition but ultimately not an essential aspect.

This is a great start from the team at Might & Delight and their former chops working on titles like Bionic Commando: Rearmed (at Grin) shine through to show a confident studio who, with luck, will build on this confident start.


Zeth

 
Zeth is our EU ninja and Editor in Chief. He's been writing about video games since 2008 when he started on BrutalGamer. He's pretty old and has been a gamer since he played Space Invaders as a young boy in the 80's. His genre tastes lean towards platformers, point-and-click adventure, action-adventure and shooters but he'll turn his hand to anything.