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Grimm Review

By , on January 7, 2011


Grimm
Download on the AppStore
3 out of 5

PROS

  • Beautiful artistic style.
  • Unique setting and challenges.
  • Fun mini-levels to break up the game.

CONS

  • Poor checkpoint placement.
  • Occasionally confusing level design and gameplay choices.
  • Counter-intuitive controls; controlled momentum requires constant careful instant-braking.

VERDICT

Grimm is a beautiful simplistic platformer with some interesting gameplay ideas, however it fails to impress with its mundane pacing that's only occasionally punctuated by fun mini-levels.


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Grimm by ROBOX Studios is a quirky platformer that places style before gameplay, wrapping itself up in a cloak of macabre black and white Victorian-inspired etchings that are offset by the amusing premise of needing to control a carriage to return a lost baby back to its uncaring parents.

The setting is quite bizarre, but charming at the same time and not unlike an abstract children's novel. This is further reinforced by the poetic musings between each level that act as story-bridge between each of the game's 10 varied worlds. The carriage (or perambulator if you prefer) is controlled by tilting the iDevice in a landscape orientation and two buttons provide quick access to a jump and 'brake'. Enemies and objects around the grim landscape can be bounced on or interacted with directly, however players will also get to use the baby within the carriage as a projectile, flinging the gurgling bundle of joy at dangerous enemies or allowing it to manipulate switches hovering over dangerous hazards.

Unfortunately it all feels a bit stiff and lifeless, with enemies often more easily skipped by jumping over them or ignoring them entirely and 'puzzles' requiring little more than patience and good aim (which is thankfully aided by an indicator). The carriage itself also acts in an incredibly bizarre fashion, with its momentum being incredibly hard to stop, requiring the instant-brake button to move back and forth with accuracy. A pervasive sense of confusion is also present thanks to some levels changing up the gameplay mid-level, which while ordinarily not so bad it can cause you to question what to do next. Additional mini-levels act as the real highlight of the game as they mix the gameplay up in clever ways while remaining succinct.

Grimm is a beautifully designed Edward Gorey-esque inspired nightmare world that begs for attention, but as a game it lacks impact and falls victim to inconsistencies throughout each world. A charming experiment, but difficult to recommend.

Screenshots

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Comments

Avatar
rekz 3 years, 7 months ago

Thanks for review.  Watching 2 min's of the video is enough for me to not want this.  Would be great if App Store showed some video of the game before you buy, esp since their policy on refunds is ... questionable.

Avatar
Fractalrock1 3 years, 7 months ago

Thank you so much for the review. I loved the dark, quirky art style but was on the fence about the game. Think I'll put my money elsewhere. Maybe towards another Edward Gorey book. :)