Home > Demo Impressions, Gaming, Xbox 360 > “Braid” Demo Impressions

“Braid” Demo Impressions

It’s been a long wait, but Braid has finally arrived on the Xbox Live Arcade. Does it live up to all the hype it’s been getting? Well, I can’t say for sure since I only played the trial version, but what I can say is that I walked away very impressed. Braid appears to be nothing but a platformer at first, but as players will soon discover, there’s more to this than meets the eye.

Speaking of what meets the eye, the graphics are excellent. Everything looks like a beautiful watercolor painting, so I can easily understand how some people might want to revisit stages just to take another look at the environments. The music is just as deep and beautiful, with violin and piano melodies playing in the background. Not something that would appeal to everyone, I’m sure, but something that definitely added to the experience for me.

The goal of Braid is to rescue a princess that’s been kidnapped by a horrible monster. Sound familiar? The game is full of Mario references, and I’m not quite sure what to make of them. Are they a respectful nod, or an attempt to poke fun at Mario games? I can’t say for certain at this point. But anyway, the princess is in an unreachable castle, so you must create a ladder to it with puzzle pieces scattered throughout a series of worlds. Finding each puzzle piece is the real challenge to Braid, since any mistake you make, be it missing a jump or getting killed, can be instantly reversed by pressing the X button. This time-altering power may sound like a cheap gimmick, but in reality it leads to some genius (and deeply satisfying) puzzle solutions. Each world brings some new gameplay mechanic to the table as well, so you’re given something new to work with often.

At fifteen dollars, I’m a little hesitant to buy Braid, but after seeing how well-made and genius it is, I wouldn’t count out a purchase. Braid is the most innovative and unique game I’ve played since Portal, so I’d be glad to spend more time with it.

By Josh60502

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  1. Sweety
    August 8, 2008 at 9:52 am

    today’s comic is relevant!

    http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/

  2. Sweety
    August 11, 2008 at 10:55 am

    btw, the backgrounds actually ARE beatiful watercolor paintings. Someone painted them and Jon used them as a background

  3. August 20, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    Can’t say I’m surprised. Though how the watercolor paintings are fused into the game is what’s really important – and Braid nailed it.

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