Review - BitGenerations: Orbital (GBA)

Discussion in 'GBAtemp Reviews & Guides' started by TheGreat2nd, Aug 25, 2006.

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Aug 25, 2006
  1. TheGreat2nd

    Member TheGreat2nd [No Title]

    Nov 22, 2003
    New York City
    United States

    BitGenerations – Orbital

    One of the three games in Series 2 of BitGenerations, this game is art in motion. The premise of the game is that you are a planet, a small planet. You cannot control your planet with the traditional D-Pad. Instead, you control your orbit with red and blue colors. There are no enemies, no bosses, and no storyline. It’s just you, a planet, and your stage, a galaxy of other planets.

    The gameplay is reminiscent of other basic games; you are a small object, and you “eat” other small objects to grow larger. In Orbital, you have a small white planet, amongst a galaxy of red, blue, and white planets. You can control your planet’s orbit by pressing A, which turns you red, and pressing B, which turns you blue. Red orbit turns you towards the other red planets, while a blue orbit turns you away from the red planets. To grow bigger, you collide into other blue planets. To gain other planets to orbit you, you would come close to the white planets, but not collide into them, therefore dragging them into your orbit. It’s a really simple game, with a really simple idea. Get your planet big enough for you to have the sun orbit you. A side mission would be to try and get a moon into your orbit. Doing so in all of the missions unlocks a bonus. By colliding into a red planet, you lose a life. To gain more lives, just finish the stage with more planets in your orbit. The planets you collect into your orbit are your life counter. There are 6 galaxies to unlock and 5 stages each, making a paltry 30 stages to mess around in. The final galaxy is Earth. Each stage has a different style and level layout, creating a varied game experience.

    The graphics are, like most games in the BitGeneration series, very simplified, plain, and minimal. Throughout the actual game stages, there are only a few colors, the main color being black, covering the vast space not covered by planets. A modern approach to a modern genre of pick up and play is where Orbital is headed. It is, however, not ugly.

    The sound in this game is very interesting. In each stage, it starts off with nothing but a tiny pulse. But, as you collect planets into your orbit, more instruments come into play. A piano, a flute, all creating a mesh of notes, molding into a symphony of sound loops. The moon creates a very silent, almost creepy, music tone that will not go away until the level ends. It is probably the most unique music piece in the game, being as it is slow paced, unlike the fast paced cacophony of planets in your orbit previously. The planets show the craziness of orbit through sound, and create an almost serene like game.

    Lasting Replay
    The replay value of this game is limited by how much of an arcade player you are. The only replay value in this game is strewn through the high score challenges players can set with each other or how fast one can complete each level through time trials. The replay is very limited due to a lack of a storyline.

    Overall, this game is personally my favorite installation in the BitGenerations series and is definitely worth $30. I loved the sound in this game, and it is the first time I have seen a game use planets to represent an increase in sound. Though the replay value is not there, it is definitely worth $30 to just experience the gameplay and show the uniqueness and simplicity of the BitGenerations series.





    Gameplay - 9/10
    Graphics - 6/10
    Sound - 9/10
    Lasting Replay - 6/10
    Overall - 8/10 (Not an average)
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