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Aura-Aura Climber Review

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On 03/13/2010 at 11:19 AM by Lukasz Balicki

Cheap and addictive arcade fun.

Recommended for everyone.

When it comes to titles priced at 200 Nintendo DSi Points ($2) on the DSi Shop most of them are either simple applications or recycled content from existing retail titles. It’s rare to see any new, unique games on the DSi Shop in that pricing bracket that are also fun and engaging. Thankfully Nintendo's latest DSiWare title, Aura-Aura Climber is quite possibly the best $2 game on the service.

In Aura-Aura Climber you control a star named Aura-Aura that crash landed from the heavens down into a planet. In the game you will attempt to help the star get back to his proper place in the sky. While on the journey players encounter various enemies and obstacles that will impede their path.

When you boot up the game for the very first time you are immediately taken to the game's tutorial, which will of course teach you the basics. While some tutorials can be bland or tedious, this tutorial is extremely transparent due to its brevity and simplicity.

In the game, you simply climb up to higher elevations in the sky by reaching grapple points with Aura-Aura's grapple arm. Most grapple points in the game are stationary and have no subsequent action after being grabbed. Others however will do things like make you float slightly above the point or launch you in a specific direction. As you progress in the game players are introduced to enemies and other hazards.

Once the rather short tutorial is completed players have access to the game’s two main modes: Score Attack and Endless. In Score Attack you will play through various levels with the goal of trying to score as many points as possible before you reach the final grapple point that ultimately completes the level. In Endless, you try to climb through the sky as high as possible before time runs out.

As I played through this title for the first time I was surprised how addictive the game was despite its simplicity. I was also surprised how polished this game was from the solid controls to the fantastic presentation. For a game of this nature, tight and responsive controls are a must, and Aura Aura Climber delivers. The subtle touches of the presentation were what impressed me most. For instance, as players reach higher elevations, slowly escaping the planet’s atmosphere, the sky gets darker until players eventually enter outer space.

It's hard to say anything bad about Aura-Aura Climber as it doesn’t really have any major faults. I had a lot of fun playing through the game and at times I found the game to be more enjoyable than numerous downloadable or even retail games that I have played. If you own a DSi and want a cheap game that is both addictive and contains a lot of replay value, do not hesitate in downloading Aura-Aura Climber.

Review Policy

In our reviews, we'll try not to bore you with minutiae of a game. Instead, we'll outline what makes the game good or bad, and focus on telling you whether or not it is worth your time as opposed to what button makes you jump.

We use a five-star rating system with intervals of .5. Below is an outline of what each score generally means:

All games that receive this score are standout games in their genre. All players should seek a way to play this game. While the score doesn't equate to perfection, it's the best any game could conceivably do.

These are above-average games that most players should consider purchasing. Nearly everyone will enjoy the game and given the proper audience, some may even love these games.

This is our middle-of-the-road ranking. Titles that receive three stars may not make a strong impression on the reviewer in either direction. These games may have some faults and some strong points but they average out to be a modest title that is at least worthy of rental for most.

Games that are awarded two stars are below average titles. Good ideas may be present, but execution is poor and many issues hinder the experience.

Though functional, a game that receives this score has major issues. There are little to no redeeming qualities and should be avoided by nearly all players.

A game that gets this score is fundamentally broken and should be avoided by everyone.



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