Yes, I have finally taken my time to site down and play through Big Evil Corporation’s 16-bit puzzle platformer “Tanglewood” (don’t miss out on our “Tanglewood” interview with Matt Phillips!”). Well, I have also spent the last couple of days recording a video for “Tanglewood” (I uploaded the video via our Youtube page yesterday).
So I’m going to do my very best to make a fair and balanced review of “Tanglewood” =) And with that said, the first thing that I noticed when I booted up “Tanglewood” is that the game sure lives up to its said 16-bit nature. You see, as soon as the game kicks-off, it really feels like you are back in the 80s or 90s again.
I’m not even exaggerating either, because you really feel like you’re playing a newly made Mega Drive game in the year 2018. Furthermore, even the music and sound effects are very 16-bit:ish. The same could also be said about Tanglewood’s controls, which are as simple as they get (you only use three action buttons + the up, down, left and right buttons).
I would also like to point out that the settings and option menu are very simple and basic as well in “Tanglewood”. So you are pretty much good to go in just a couple of minutes (if even that), and once the game’s introduction movie is over, you are free to explore the world of “Tanglewood” as you please (you play as a fox-like creature named “Nymn”).
However, be sure to be a quick learner though, or else you will end up dead in no time…Because there are plenty of deadly traps and creatures to be found in “Tanglewood”. I actually ended up dead a couple of times just because I couldn’t keep my curiosity at bay. Long story short, you can only get hit ONE time in “Tanglewood”, because on hit = Instant death.
So I made the mistake to think that it was a good idea to befriend some local forest squirrels. Well, it turned out that the squirrels are actually blood hungry monster in disguise (as seen in the picture above). In other words, it’s a good idea to always assume that everything, and everyone is out there to kill you (at least that’s the case in the first chapter of the game).
As for the gameplay aspects of “Tanglewood”, the game is very smooth and straight forward. So it’s the kind of game that very easy to get into, but it takes skills and practice to master. Even so, I still feel like the balance is just right in “Tanglewood” (the difficulty + the platform + puzzle elements and learning curve), because I never ended up feeling frustrated enough to just quite the game all together.
I mean, sure. “Tanglewood” isn’t by any means a flawless game (my biggest beef with the game is with no doubt the fact that you sometimes don’t know what you should do, or where you should go. I would also like to have some attack actions and the ability to drop straight down from platforms and whatnot). Nevertheless, all in all, “Tanglewood” is still a truly fun and creative 16-bit puzzle platformer.
So if you like old 16-bit games such as “Sonic the Hedgehog”, “The Lion King” and “Another World”. Then you should most definitely give “Tanglewood” a try for either PC or Mega Drive.
+ Awesome 16-bit graphics
+ It’s very easy to get into the game
+ The combo between platforming and puzzle solving is just right
+ Nice soundtrack
+ There are plenty of levels, things to do and challenges to take on
– I wish that there would have been more music in the game (a lot of areas are totally mute on the music front)
– Sometimes you have no idea what you should do, or where you should go
– Small bugs and glitches (it’s mainly sound and graphical issues)
– There is no equippable weapons or attacks to be found in the game (you can use big rocks as weapons though)
Sound and music: 3.5/5
Replay value: 3/5
It’s been a very long time since I played a 16-bit puzzle/platformer that’s been this charming and impressing as Big Evil Corporation’s “Tanglewood” is. As a matter of fact, I would have to go back to the 16-bit golden era of the 90s to find games such as “Sonic”, “The Lion King” and “Another World” to even have any titles to compare “Tanglewood” to. Simply put, “Tanglewood” is a must play for fans of 16-bit puzzle/platformers.
Developer: Big Evil Corporation
Resolution: Highest possible on PC
Release date: 2018-08-14
Spent time: +4 hours
Average grade internationally: N/A
PEGI/ESRB age rating: +6
Price: 14,99 Euros
The review code was provided by Big Evil Corporation.
Robin “V-Act” Ek
Editor in chief
The Gaming Ground
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