July 24, 2011

Summer of Arcade: Week One

Lasting First Impressions of Bastion from Supergiant Games

Bastion boxartPAX East back in March was full of promising games, many of which have already been released since. One game in particular, which I had the pleasure of playing back then, has finally seen the light of day and has garnered the honour of being selected as the one game to launch this year’s Summer of Arcade on Xbox Live Arcade. This game, of course, is Supergiant Games’ premier release, Bastion.

Bastion is an action adventure game with a touch of RPG elements and tells the story, in a very unique way, of a young boy, a survivor of the Calamity, on an journey to restore life to the Bastion. The uniqueness of the storytelling is through the wonderful use of a narrator. This is something I’ve never before experienced in any game and truly adds to the wonder and humour inherent in this game.

At its heart, Bastion is a hack-n-slash style adventure, complete with numerous weapons to be found and upgraded and special abilities to master. For the true adventurers out there, littered throughout each level are mysterious objects that help tell the story of the Bastion before the Calamity destroyed it.

Bastion Screen 2

Bastion is an absolutely beautiful game to behold. The imagery is like witnessing a water colour painting come alive right before your eyes. Each step you take through the levels, the game literally builds right before you and the narrator tells your story as you play; every success and every fail is told through the eyes of the narrator in real time. There is something simply magical about hearing a narrator tell the story as you dictate your own actions through the game. There are many times I wonder what he would have said had I done something differently. Bastion is a wonderfully unique game and certainly one that must be experienced.

Bastion screen

Even though I had already played through the first level of the game while it was on display at a PAX East, I still thoroughly enjoyed playing it again. This is the kind of game the draws you in and keeps you wanting to come back for more. The humour, the narration, the imagery, and the simple but effective controls all combine to bring a wonderful addition to the XBLA library. Bastion is going to become a fan favourite for years to come.

If this is the calibre of the titles coming at us during the Summer of Arcade, we are certainly in for a great Summer of gaming!

Supergiant Games, I gave you an hour and I am IMPRESSED! I look forward to what you have in store for us next.

About the Author

Sean is an avid gamer and lover of all thing tech. He is a dedicated husband and the father to three beautiful daughters. In addition to taking his love of gaming to a new level with this site, Sean is also host of our podcasts: The OMG! Hour, Lost Treasures of Gaming, and Primetime as well as the bi-weekly podcast mashup show, Gamers Unscripted. Follow Sean on Twitter as @Xiantayne and this blog as @OMGnexus.



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