This week EA showed off a bunch of its summer line-up to the press here in London. I wanted to start off my recap of the event by taking a little look at one of the less well known titles on show, but one that looks like it has a bit of potential.
The game in question is Warp, the debut console and PC title from Canadian studio Trapdoor which is due to hit XBLA, PSN, and PC this summer. I got to play through the opening ten minutes and was instantly impressed by what looks to be an unassuming but very fun top-down puzzle game.
You play as a little robotic-looking orange alien with spindly limbs matched by two splindly atennae. Your spindly self has been captured by scientists who are doing tests on you – as scientists do – but their attempts to contain you have failed thanks to your ability to, you guessed it, warp.
A face button and a directional push of the analog stick lets you teleport forward a short amount of space and, pertinently, you can even warp through walls using your powers. So you’re able to warp out of your holding room and start making your escape from the laboratory. For the first two minutes this appears to be the major jist of the game: you warp across doors, working your way through the maze-like levels, and try to help this cute little alien make his harmless little way along.
Then you find out you can warp in and out of objects – cool stuff.
And then you find out that you can warp in and out of humans.
Yes, humans. One puzzle requires you to warp into the body of a human host, proper Alien-style. You can warp back out of him and leave him unharmed… or if you so wish you can shake the left stick around until you rumble around in him so much that he explodes in a huge splatter of blood.
Not such a cute game anymore.
Trapdoor wasn’t showing too much of Warp at the event but it looks like the game will chiefly mix up puzzling with simplistic stealth play. While scientists will only hide from you, the guards will try to shoot you down whenver you’re in sight and even if you warp into another guard – you’re that much of a threat. I got to play through one stealth sequence which saw me warp from one explosive barrel to another until I found one that was right next to two guards; rumble, rumble, boom.
There’s definitely the base there for a strong, short and sweet puzzle game with a bit of that Splosion Man vibe, so I’ll be sure to keep my eye on it in the coming months.