Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet – Review

Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet recently hit Xbox Live Arcade as part of Microsoft’s annual “Summer of Arcade” promotion. Microsoft has done a good job this year of differentiating the types of games that we are seeing in this year’s promotion. Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet has you in a small flying saucer flying around an alien world and exploring as much of it as you can. Along the way you will pick up different tools that you will need to progress as well as battle enemies and solve puzzles. This game does have a bit of the “Metroidvania” feel to it which people should definitely like. You are encouraged to explore your surroundings and there is definitely some backtracking involved. There will be times when you find an area that you don’t have access to and you will have to return later once you have the proper equipment.

Graphically speaking Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet is pretty unique and is aesthetically pleasing. There is some wonderful animation in the game and it can be very cool to watch things come to life all of a sudden. The musical score is pretty awesome as well as the ambient sounds that you will hear while you are maneuvering your space ship through the environments. As you progress you will acquire various weapons to use at will such as a claw arm, a controllable rocket and more. You will need to utilize these different items to solve puzzles along the way and, ultimately , save your planet. One of my favorite items to use was the very first item you get that allows you to scan different objects. Another nice touch is the ability to hot key up to four different weapons. It was really nice to just hit one button to quickly bring up a weapon instead of having to go into a menu. If you are stuck on a boss fight or a particularly difficult puzzle you can try and scan the environment for hints on what you are supposed to do. It helped me get out of more than one difficult situation and it was a great idea by the development team.

The game is incredibly quirky and one that I definitely enjoyed. The only real complaint that I have about the game is its length. I went through it in only a few hours which made the game feel too short. There is no way this game should have a $15 price tag. It should have went the route of Fruit Ninja Kinect and only be $10. There is a multiplayer mode called “Lantern Run” and that will extend the replayability of the title for some. You can play with up to four players online or locally which is definitely a nice touch. In this mode you have to drag a lantern through some caves while at the same time trying to outrun a monster that is closing in on you and your friends. It is actually pretty cool but still doesn’t justify the high price tag. Overall I had a lot of fun with Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet. The game is an Xbox Live Arcade title which means there is a free demo and it is a game that everyone needs to try out. Hopefully we will see this title as part of a “Deal of the Week” promotion in the future, especially with the holiday season fast approaching. If you want something different then I would definitely suggest that you give this game a try. Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet is a memorable title during a summer of incredible arcade games.

Score: 8/10

Originally posted on Totally Gaming Network

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