Poor Park Ranger Faraday! Minding his own business one day when the Polarity Park MagNetPets go missing! Oh no!! And to make matters worse, the Bloxbots have gone properly mental and started trashing everything of value!
The Ranger, as head of Bloxbot maintenance is tasked by his rather pushy boss with the job of bringing order back to Polarity City.
This isn't done with guns, brute strength or magic! Park Ranger Faraday has got something niftier than all those! He's armed with nothing more than a Electromagnetic Net better known as a "MagNet" and must use skill and agility to capture the misbehaving bots in order to turn them into scrap! With the fragments of scrap he can use handy Recycletrons scattered around each stage in order to get important items to advance his progress throughout the level! But he needs to watch out, as Bloxbots are not the most friendly things in the world and the poor ranger may find himself quickly overwhelmed! While looking out for himself, he also needs to keep an eye on anything else in the stage getting attacked - If he's not careful the Bloxbots may destroy them and cause him to fail that stage!
We first came across MagNets when Richard and the team introduced it to us at the Gadget Show last year, and it immediately seemed like a fun and novel idea with lashings of of old school gaming love rather than the generic brown shooters everyone seems to be playing these days! I was, to be fair, a bit rubbish at it - as you may have seen from the below video!
I think in the preview build the bad guys hit you for more damage - thankfully the release version is more forgiving! That's not to say the game isn't challenging however, there's much pleasure to be had in juggling the task of collecting enough scrap and solving the puzzles while defending the areas that are being attacked!
The game is great fun to play, with the netting mechanic working really well, and this is boosted by the visuals and music! The look of the game is great with some awesome artwork by Phil Corbett who has also done stuff for Nickelodeon and Disney! The vibrant colours and fun characters really lead themselves to the game and scream personality! Check out some of his concept art below!
Likewise, the sound is great with some amazing music that nails the vibe of the game with some suitably retro sounding tunes spliced with a dance beat!
While the general aim of each stage is the same, the game slowly introduces new concepts and abilities that mix up the collect-em-um happenings! This ensures that things do not get tired while not overloading the player all at once! The difficulty also gradually ramps up from a few enemies to swarms of vicious bots out to get you! The environments are also varied, with everything from a robot concert in the park to more sci-fi locations! To spice things up a bit there are also boss battles, the first of which being a rather angry looking robotic bunny!
I would highly recommend picking up the game if you want something a bit different than everything else out there, the netting mechanic is great and there's a huge sense of achievement when you finally finish a stage flawlessly! One minor criticism I have is the game isn't the easiest to play o a keyboard, and really needs a gamepad for full enjoyment - Hopefully we see the game come to consoles, as it really is something that would be great for a quick blast of in the comfort of the living room!
And so we're please to award MagNets our first Buy It Now award!
MagNets is out now and can be bought here for £7.99