De Blob (Review) Xbox One

De Blob (Review) Xbox One
Review Score:

De Blob by developer THQ Nordic is a platform-puzzle adventure game that sees the player in the role of Blob, a gelatinous ball of water that was sent to liberate Chrome City from the evil monochromatic INKT Corporation. This organization has captured the city and outlawed all color and fun from daily life. The player must re-color the large city by splashing buildings, citizens and landmarks with a variety of colors that can be mixed together.

De Blob starts with a brief tutorial that outlines the game’s painting mechanics. Once the player completes the tutorial, they are sent into Chrome City to begin their adventure. From there, the player must find mission NPCs (indicated by a green, spinning upside down arrow) that are scattered throughout the city. A mission can be activated by standing on a quest marker (which is below the arrow) and pressing X button.

These missions are timed and contain specific objectives. For example: some may require the player to paint an entire city block a certain color, while others involve painting landmarks and other locations related to the story, among others. During these missions, the player can increase the clock by collecting ‘time’ power ups, which resemble spinning alarm clocks. The power ups in question are plentiful, and they can be found scattered throughout each level. If the player happens to fail one of these missions (which does happen occasionally), they can revisit the same mission NPC to start over. The player must complete enough of these missions to make the ‘level switch’  (which opens the gate to the next area) appear. When it does, De Blob must be the same color as the switch to activate it.

De Blob is like a sponge that can absorb different colored ‘Paints’, which are contained inside small droids called ‘Paintbots’. Coming in contact with one of these bots will allow the player to absorb that color. Each Paintbot provides a certain number of ‘paint’ points. As the player paints the various objects inside the environment (i.e. buildings, bridges, trees, etc.), their paint points will deplete. These points can be restored by reabsorbing the same color.

As the game progresses, the player will be required to ‘mix’ colors to create a new one. This is achieved by walking into different colored Paintbots. It sounds complicated, but it’s actually quite easy. For example: mixing red and yellow together will create orange, while combining yellow and blue together will result in the color green, to name just a few. If the player happens to mix the wrong colors, they can visit any of the available water pools (which are scattered throughout the city) to ‘wash off’ any recently absorbed paint. These pools will reset De Blob back to his default color, which is translucent grey. They can also be used to clean off hazards such as black ink, which leak into certain levels.

Combat is fun and easy to learn. When the player is attacked by a group of Inkies (which are colorless creatures employed by monochromatic INKT Corporation), they can target each enemy by pressing LT (Left Trigger) and then A button repeatedly to dispatch each one. Sometimes it’s easier to sneak past enemies. Later in the game, De Blob acquires a move called ‘Z-Jumping’. This move can be executed when a Z marker (designated by the letter ‘Z’) is present. This allows the player to jump to platforms that are suspended above the playfield. To accomplish this, the player must hold LT to lock on to the Z marker, and then press A button to jump. The player must repeat the aforementioned process if more than one marker exists. If the player is too slow (or hesitates too long) between jumps, De Blob will fall to the ground.

De Blob is an interesting game. The only issue with De Blob is how it limits the player to ‘splashing’ paint onto objects. It would have been nice to have the freedom to actually draw (or at least create) some kind of art during the missions, even if it just entailed splashing different colors onto the same object to give them a more personal feel. But with that gripe aside, Xbox One gamers can’t go wrong with De Blob; it’s one of those sleeper hits that can easily slip under the radar.

Mike Pittaro
Platform: Xbox One
Developer: THQ Nordic
Publisher: THQ Nordic
ESRB: E (Everyone)
Price: $19.99

De Blob Official Website:
https://www.thqnordic.com/games/de-blob

Review Score
Graphics
Beautiful colors bring the desolate, grey world of Chrome City to life.
Sound
The sound effects - while pretty average - fit the action.
Gameplay
Every level is challenging and fun.
Overall
De Blob is guaranteed to offer hours of enjoyment.
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