Crowded as it is with farting massage simulators, it can be hard to find worthwhile titles on Xbox Live Indie Games. That's why we sift through all that rough to unearth a few gems. That way, you get the skinny on quality games and we get to indulge our secret passion for fart machines. This week, we try out Nyan Cat Adventure, a platformer from 21st Street Games.
Indie developer 21st Street Games has found a niche: bizarre platformers. Its previous offering, Techno Kitten Adventure, was a visual assault backed by a simple gameplay mechanic, and the studio's latest is no different. The Xbox Live Indie game Nyan Cat Adventure takes the popular internet meme into the realm of single-button arcade gameplay.
But the most surprising thing about Nyan Cat Adventure is the variety I found in such a simple experience. True, the game only uses one button, but what that button does constantly changes throughout the game's main mode of play, dubbed 'Party.'
Essentially each game mode is a different way to play the game -- Fly mode, for example, gives Nyan the ability to fly and players must guide him (her? it?) through treacherously claustrophobic areas. Jump mode is the usual free-runner stuff; Gravity has Nyan running on the ceiling and floor, switching between each to avoid obstacles.
Toast mode litters the map with, well, toasters, and you shoot between them like the barrel segments in Donkey Kong Country. Party mode hits you with all of these gameplay styles together in one session, switching between each until you run out of lives.
Nyan Cat Adventure is score-based, so you'll pick up random modifiers and items, which affect the game as well as your place on the game's leaderboards. You'll find the usual score boosters, but there are also pick-ups designed to make you invincible along with others that slow the action down or speed it up.
It keeps things fresh and always changing -- no two games I played were the same. It's amazing just how much more difficult a game becomes when you accidentally run over a party capsule and everything starts pulsing with big, bright lights.
Nyan Cat Adventure is currently available on Xbox Live Indie Games for 240 MS Points ($3). It's really fun and has a soundtrack you won't mind having stuck in your head, unlike the dreaded Nyan Cat theme song.
Want to try out Nyan Cat Adventure? You can queue the trial version for download here on Xbox.com! The full version is 240 MS Points ($3). If you've discovered (or created) an outstanding Xbox Live Indie Game and think it deserves some more visibility, email Xav aat joystiq dawt com, subject line "Xbox Live Indie Gems." Want to find more indie gems? Check out the archive.