Game Vortex review: Braid

GV reports:

''Indie games are a rare treat for gamers today. Sometimes, when one of them comes along, they make such an indelible impression on the industry, you can only hope that larger companies learn from it. Braid landed on the Xbox Live MarketPlace recently and hopes to prove that gaming can be a viable storytelling and artistic medium.

What Braid does well is to call back nostalgic memories from the past with simple, yet familiar visuals. The hand-painted art style is so meticulous that it almost carries a 16-bit feel to the whole package. The art direction pays many tributes to the various inspirations that helped create Braid. There are giant monkey statues that shoot barrels down a tiered platform. There are castles in the background with flags that must be lowered to end the levels. There are even cute little dinosaurs that tell you that the princess is in another castle. The nostalgia is thick, but it works out for the best.

The background music that plays is an elegant blend of wind instruments and classical tunes. The sweet melodies and harmonies play off of the art style to create what Jonathan Blow (the creator) hopes people will see as interactive art. Every little facet of the audio has been thought through. Each enemy has a distinct sound and nearly everything else feels natural enough to not create any distraction from the puzzles.''

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