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Game Name : Gish
System : PC - Windows
Date Added : 2004-06-18 15:13:15

Written By : Josh Hornby

Gish is a level based platformer created by Chronic Logic. It isn’t one of those fancy mega 3D type platformers. It uses side scrolling but it is still a pretty good game. Chronic Logic are a small party of developers and Gish is one of there best releases so far.

Our story begins…

It is a fine Sunday afternoon. Gish and his very special lady friend Brea are enjoying a leisurely stroll through the local park. The birds and singing and the sun is shinning, it is the perfect day for time out in the sun. Gish and Brea walk around the park enjoying the atmosphere and the peaceful environment. As they begin down a concrete path Gish sees an open manhole up ahead of them. Thinking nothing of it he and Brea continue on up the path. As they get closer to it, Gish begins to feel uneasy. There is something fishy about this man-hole…The edge even closer to it and look down…

Then suddenly a giant monster springs up out of the open manhole! Brea screams, but it’s too late. The monster grabs Brea with one of his slimy hands and retreats back down the man-hole. Gish has to save Brea! He can’t let that disgusting, slimy monster take her! Without even thinking twice Gish jumps down the man-hole after the monster. As he reaches the bottom of the sewer Gish takes in the unfamiliar surroundings. The monster nor Brea were nowhere to be seen… Now it’s up to Gish to find and save Brea, although there is one small difference between Gish and most heroes. You see Gish is a ball of tar…

The graphics in Gish aren’t those fancy life-like 3D graphics you see in games. But the graphics even though they are 2D are done really well. The level design is intricate and really makes you think about what you need to do to complete the level. The levels are drawn and put into the game really well. The backgrounds look excellent and the foreground looks just as good. Now you’re probably thinking “How hard can it be to draw a ball of tar?” That’s just the thing, the main character may seem like a simple design but actually it is really well-done. Gish himself is animated really well, so every time you move he wobbles differently and when he slides and sticks to walls he looks quite good. The enemies in the game are also animated very well. The graphics I think are done pretty well for 2D, they are pretty smooth looking. It just goes to show you don’t need to have fancy graphics to make a good game!

The controls can be a bit hard to get used to, even if you customize them. Basically you have 8 main buttons to use. You have the four directional buttons. Then the other buttons are used for Gish’s abilities. Although a feature that is really good (and helps you learn the controls) is that whenever you play, your button configuration is down in the bottom right of the screen, so if you cant remember what you set a button to all you have to do is glance down at the screen. This is really good as it doesn’t require you to quit your game and go to the options screen just to see what you set a control as, although you will have to quit if you want to change you button configuration. The learning curve for this game is fairly easy, once you’re used to the controls you won’t have a problem with them, but as I said they do take a little getting used to.

The gameplay in Gish is fairly good. It’s one of those games whether you like it or you don’t, but those who like it will tell you. It gets really addictive! I found myself playing it for nearly 3 hours on end when I thought I had only been playing it for 20 minutes! The levels are fun to play through. Like some levels are fairly straight forward (climb this, knock over that) but then other levels really require you to stop, explore your surroundings then think about what you need to do to advance further. Throughout the game Gish will have to use his abilities to conquer the sewer and save Brea. Gish has 3 abilities; they are Stickiness, Heavy and Slide. Sticky basically allows Gish to stick to whatever he touches (floors, walls…roofs). This ability is very useful when you are required to climb high walls. Gish’s second ability “Heavy” makes Gish go hard as rock. This ability allows Gish to smash whatever he can. For example if there is a wall of stones in your way, simply use the Heavy ability and crash straight through them like they were a house of cards. Gish’s last ability is Slide. Slide allows Gish to squeeze himself into the shape of a something so he can slide through it. This is very helpful when Gish comes to a part it the sewer that is a tight squeeze!

I think that Gish is a good game and Chronic Logic should be congratulated on a job well done. Gish has a pretty good storyline, the levels are fun and challenging, and although the graphics aren’t stunning it is still a good game. I played this game for quite awhile and I found that it was both fun and addictive. It is a small game, but by no means is it small on fun! Platformer fans who enjoyed the old Super Mario Bros type side scrolling game will really like Gish. With Fun levels, smooth graphics, a good storyline and an evil villain Gish has all the making of a classic Side-Scrolling Platformer!

- Fun
- Addictive
- Good Graphics For 2D
- Storyline is original

- Controls are a bit hard to get used to
- Can take awhile to figure out some things
- Music could be a little better

Graphics: 8/10
Sound: 7.8/10
Gameplay: 8.4/10
Storyline: 8/10
Overall: 8.1/10

Editors Note: While this review has the overall tone that the game is possibly let down by it's 2d nature, I myself found myself playing this game for many hours more than much more expensive full price 3d games, my view is that the physics engine gives a very natural feel once you get used to it and the gameplay is really fantastic for a game of this sort. I found it Well worth playing and definitely worth the small $20 price. I'm also not quite sure why the reviewer put the game down so badly in some area's, I personally found the music and sound in the game brilliant and a great revival of the classic tunes that made the older games great, I would have given the sound 9.5/10, the gameplay also deserves a 9.5/10 and overall I would say the game if definitely a solid 9/10. The best thing I recommend you do is download and try the demo for yourself and make up your own mind, you will find the demo here.

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