The sequel we have all been waiting for!!
Click to download the trial
Johnny Platform Saves Christmas is an improvement over the original biscuit romp in just about every department. Its obvious the developer spent more time with this title. I am glad that he did and I think you will be as well.
The graphics are crisp, the controls are tight and the music is nice. Hearing Johnny exclaim "I feel like a Christmas turkey" for the 20th time after being repeatedly torched by a flamethrower was only slightly annoying.
Johnny Platform could be called a puzzle platformer but I think some if its puzzles could have been a bit more puzzling. Still, any puzzle is better than no puzzle at all. I am sure the puzzle levels require a fair amount of time to create. Just making sure that the platforms are the exact right distance for Johnny to succeed in crossing with his new rolling double jump must have taken up a good chunk of the developers time. And be aware, some levels will require a mastery of this maneuver.
The game boasts 100 levels and I'm currently on level 44 but there are quite a few that require nothing more than a few simple jumps to get through, and some that almost had me putting down the controller in frustration after spending five or six minutes trying to figure out the puzzle with no success. Some of the puzzles are of the moving boxes to a certain spot type. Luckily if you move a box to a bad spot you can hold down the B button to restart the level with no loss of life.
You get to checkpoint save every 5 levels. If you are playing the trial this would allow you to get to level 20 by saving every 5 levels and restarting the game. But only to level 20, after that you are asked to purchase the game. Personally I think a checkpoint at every level would of been better.
If you lose all your lives on say level 25, you would have to go back to level 21. Of course since you've already beaten these levels they should be cake. Indeed they are, but I still would have liked the option to continue at my current level. Gaming has evolved a long way since the days of the three lives and that's it style of gameplay.
I quite enjoy the graphical variations in the game. Every few levels we are introduced to a new element that changes the gameplay and keeps us interested. In the screen above, we are shown a christmas pudding and a lava block. Both must be used in a certain way to complete the level and move on.
A trailer is below if you're into that sort of thing.
The Xbox indie games channel experiment is just about one year old. Interestingly, Biscuit Romp was released a year ago as well. If Saves Christmas is the kind of improvements we can expect from the channel in a single year, I wonder what the independent Xbox developers will be presenting to us next year or five years from now. Will we be playing an online editable version of Johnny Platform Fixes the Galaxy? Perhaps, but for the time being I must get back in the game, Christmas needs Saving!