As I continue my journey into PC gaming, Gunpoint was one I anticipated. Featuring an interesting puzzle mechanic, simplistic graphics, and a score reminiscent of an old detective movie, Gunpoint did what many independent games failed to do; set itself apart with charm.
Like many indie games today, Gunpoint was developed by one person, Tom Francis. Using Game Maker, Francis developed the game in his free time. This lent to the simplistic art style and gameplay, it’s two shining features. Players control Richard Conway, a freelance spy, who thanks to some recently purchased hypertrousers, is able to leap great distances and stick to surfaces. After progressing, you’ll eventually purchase a device that allows to you wirelessly hack into lights, doors, etc. and operate them from a distance.
The puzzle aspect was interesting, with each level grading you on your time, witnesses, etc. The puzzles never required more than a few seconds thought, growing slightly more complex as the game progressed. In between levels you’d talk with NPC’s, given answer selections that range from serious to asinine. I stopped reading the dialogue shortly after the first level because of the frequency and density of paragraphs. It slowed my enjoyment down.
My biggest complaint is the length. The game is incredibly short, taking me around 2 hours to complete. As an adult with responsibilities and crap, I don’t begrudge a short game. Considering I picked this up for $5 (on sale from $10), I don’t feel cheated. It was more in the language of the game. Just as the puzzles began to increase in complexity and I finally understood how to use the unintuitive gadgets, the game was over. The game barely got me past walking speed before ending.
There is a level editor, but I lack the time and imagination for something like that. I’ll check in a few months to see if any creative levels have 5-starred their way to the top, but I doubt I’ll get much more use out of it. The game allowed me to go back and play previous levels, but considering I received an A+ rating on each, I see little reason to.
The game play is fun, but it’s never really given enough room to stretch. I was given enough money to purchase the most expensive upgrade before the last level, only using it once. This begs the question, what’s the point? Beyond the hacking tool, I never used or never understood how to use the other tools I purchased. One tool allowed me to silently break windows. To activate, I needed to click the window as I approached it while leaping at it. This would cause me to bound like an idiot when I landed.
Gunpoint is fun and definitely worth the 2 hours it takes to finish, though I wouldn’t pay full price for it. Hopefully more official levels will be added at some point.
Play Gunpoint? What did you think of the length? Comment below!
All about indie games.