By Diana "DumeeGamer" Dumee on September 1, 2016
“Robots can have a heart! Left to fend for himself after mankind abandoned the doomed planet Aurora, robot Kramer 227 must find a way to harvest energy and rescue his robotic friends before Aurora crashes into its sun. In his journey, Kramer will probe the planet itself and overcome challenging obstacles, all while trying to conserve his limited life energy to power himself and his friends on their way to safety.”
With this touching story, we were introduced to the game Shiny during our stay at the 1C Publishing booth at GamesCom 2016. It was actually the first time I ever heard about this game, and I was immediately convinced; this was one game I definitely wanted to play. I mean, come on: A game about a cute little robot that wants to help his other robot friends? Count me in!
In Shiny, you play as the absolutely adorable robot Kramer 227, and your main goal is to save as many of your robot friends robot friends as you possibly can. You can find your friends, who ran out of energy and are now completely helpless, scattered throughout the twenty side-scrolling platform levels, but some of them are very well hidden, so make sure you check every path available to you. You have to use you camera button a lot, because they can be under or above the ground floor. So check every corner of every level and save all your robot friends! The second goal in the game is repairing your ship by completing the levels. At the end of each level the result page tells you how much of your spaceship is repaired and how many robot friends you saved.
Shiny is an energy based game. Your robot, Kramer 227, runs on energy. A battery indicator tells you how much energy he has left. You use energy to move, but also to activate checkpoints and to save your fellow robots. Luckily, there are batteries floating around in every level. So collect as many as you can and keep your power-levels as high as possible!
Kramer 227 has some nice special abilities up his sleeves, which help him to traverse the dangerous levels unscathed. The first ability is a lightning sphere. When you activate it, the sphere will protect you and blast anything that could damage you into tiny little pieces. Very useful against falling boulders for example. Another very handy feature is using your special battery. This battery will fill every time you have saved a robot friend. So it pays off to do the right thing here. When you use your special battery, you’re invulnerable for a limited time, comparable with the star in the Super Mario games.
What amazed me even more than the good story and great gameplay, was the quality of the graphics. The level of detail is fantastic; The characters and objects in the front look really, really good and the landscapes in the background are amazing; Yes, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls: Shiny is one awesome looking game! And awesome sounding too; I mean, we all know that platform games can be really difficult from time to time. So I think it’s great my concentration and patience are not being tested by some annoying tune. Luckily, in Shiny, the music perfectly matches the game’s atmosphere and setting and has an relaxing effect. Except for during the speed run levels, then the high speed action is being accompanied by a matching piece of music. The first time I came across this level and made it halfway, I was shouting: Yeeehaaaaw!! This type of level is pretty straightforward. Basically, you’ll be chased by a huge wall of fire, so you start running as fast as you can. If you touch the fire, you’ll have to start all over again. Simple, isn’t it? Will this frustrate you? Definitely! Is it fun? Hell yeah!
Fans of platform games will definitely not be disappointed by Shiny. It looks beautiful and works just fine. Shiny proves that a videogame doesn’t need violence to be fun. Shiny reminded me of Rayman Legends, because every level looks awesome and there has been attention to create some new side scrolling tactics. Where Rayman is loud an bright colored, Shiny is calm and brings a world build out of metal to life. The developers clearly paid much attention to every detail present in the game while developing it, which really shows. I took the role of Kramer 227 without hesitation and I loved every energy-gathering and energy-spending minute of it!
On a more personal note, I would like to give a big round of applause to Daniel Monastero at Garage 227 Studios, for making Kramer THE most adorable robot protagonist this (or any) world has ever seen!