Unbox: Newbie’s Adventure Review

Introduction

Unbox: Newbies Adventure is a 3D platformer developed by indie studio Prospect Games and published by Merge Games. It was released for consoles and PC in September 2016.

Video Review

Review

You are Newbie, an advanced delivery box for the Global Postal Service, or GPS for short, and it’s your job to help save the company! Unfortunately for you, not only do you have to contend with saving the company from going under due to forces out of your control, but you also have to deal with a weird gang, known as the Wild Cards, as they try to bring the company down as well. Can you bring the company back to the height of success that it used to see? Or will it collapse and fold…like a cardboard box!?

The story in the game felt a little silly when it was happening, but yet at the same time, it’s so short, it feels like there’s nothing actually to it when you think about it. It moves fast, there’s no real danger or serious situations, and in all honesty the game just abruptly ends out of nowhere. It all felt like they pulled a resolution out of their back pocket more so for resolution sake. The “big” twist in the story made me kind of chuckle though, only because the reaction from all the characters is so nonchalant and uncaring.

During the levels, you can find some weird capsules that give you some little adventure logs of a character in the universe and how they used to be a delivery person for GPS, then found blackholes and something happened to them, but the only thing is, the capsules you find are all out of order. So the first capsule you can find is like number thirteen, and the first log isn’t available until the last world in the game. So it’s your job to keep everything in order from your own memory. It honestly made me care a little less for this strange lore to the game that I honestly think would’ve had a big impact on everything, had I been able to find them all and keep them in order!

When compared to other platformers, the gameplay in this is certainly different and because of the way it all works, it honestly makes it all a bit tough to control. Considering you play as a box with no feet, this means you roll around on the ground when you move, so when you start really rolling, you end up losing some momentum as you start bouncing on your corners and everything, so most of the time when you’re exploring, you’re mashing the jump button to move properly. The game has a sort of double jump mechanic, except you use your “health” to do more jumps in a row, up to six maximum. This was a really fun mechanic, especially for exploring, because it made you have to sometimes think of when to use them, like when you’re trying to get on a plane that’s high in the air, or out to an island, or even up a mountain because you don’t want to go the proper way.

If you’ve ever played a collectathon game, you’ll feel right at home here. Each of the three worlds in the game all have quite a few collectibles to find. You have two hundred pieces of tape to find, and about 18 stamps to find, though the stamps are necessary to progress. Though you can find the stamps, there’s also challenges in the levels to do to get them, like races, or picking up items and returning them back to a specific point. These were all really fun to do, but getting all the pieces of tape turned out to be a pain. Luckily there’s a character in each world that will kind of show you where things are that you’re missing, albeit with some weird camera angles. There were many times I’d have to get shown where the last piece of tape was for example, because I couldn’t make out the area, because the camera showed it through a wall, or just the floor under it.

The biggest problem to it all though was that these levels were just so big. They were beautifully crafted, don’t get me wrong, and every bit of land was used for something, but why did they need to be so big? I would’ve been happier with say half a dozen smaller levels, over the massive sprawling levels. Although the HUB area is even a big area itself, so maybe you could say there’s four worlds. If you manage to do everything in the levels, you get little cosmetic pieces you can use to customize your box. I loved seeing all these and figuring out how I wanted my shark box to look. Do I want it to have bat wings? It can even wear a cape if I wanted and have a silly mustache. Or just make it look as much like a shark as possible. The possibilities are there and they’re great!

Rating

Rating: 6 out of 10.

Pros:

  • Beautiful Worlds
  • Fun Challenges
  • Box Customization

Cons:

  • Story Ends Abruptly
  • Worlds Feel Too Large
  • Controls Are A Bit Tough

Summary

Unbox: Newbies Adventure is a silly little take on the standard platformer. It’s cute, the worlds are beautiful and the random things to do are fun. But I will say, I wish the controls were better, the world’s were smaller and more plentiful and the story was handled with more care. Still recommend it though!

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Game & Developer Information

Developer Website: Prospect Games
Developer Socials: Twitter
Publisher Website: Merge Games
Publisher Socials: Twitter

Unbox: Newbie’s Adventure | Gameplay Trailer | PS4

Published by oniwalker

Co-owner of NodeGamers(dot)com. Reviewer and Guide Writer. I'll play just about anything as I cry about my backlog!

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