GANBARE NATSUKI SAN

アンカーで壁を、天井を掴んで全50面のフィールドを縦横無尽に駆け巡れ!アンカー操作をマスターしタイムアタック、ジャンプアタックに挑戦しよう。タイ トル画面Bボタンで裏50面が出現!君は全クリできるか!?操作方法、A:掴む、B:ジャンプ、Y:メニュー。Copyright 2009 あるふぁ~秘密基地(Alpha Secret Base). All Rights Reserved.

Alpha Secret Base is by far the most prolific Xbox Indie developer of quality games around already with ten titles to its credit. Most all Alpha Secret Base releases feature a windowed screen filled with simple but colorful anime style graphics; will generally have 50 selectable levels; offer a bevy of options including a language select, gallery, and music player; and have numerous stat tracking and/or replay options available. While Ganbare Natsuki San is missing the language select due to the lack of a story and with the options already being in English, the game is as feature rich as past Alpha Secret Base games and is a shining example of the full fledged, solid releases the developer brings to Xbox Indies for just 80 points.

Ganbare Natsuki San is a platformer vaguely reminiscent of Umihara Kawase, a rubberbanding platformer focusing on grappling to get around with simplistic graphics layered over photorealistic backgrounds. The Xbox Indie title plays like a sticker version of Kawase with the girl able to latch onto any object at will with no physics impacting her movements whatsoever. Once the player has anchored the girl to a wall, he or she can either pivot the girl around or bound into the air as a sort of double jump. The game doesn't play as one would expect it to at all -- the air leaping makes no sense whatsoever -- but once the player adapts to the starched game environment, the fog clears and the gameplay begins to shine through.

Ganbare Natsuki San is a most enjoyable game requiring players to maneuver about a level collecting food items and avoiding obstacles such as water, spikes, and other deadly objects along the water. The difficulty curve is nicely done, and the game still allows struggling players to bypass any of the included 50 levels as they so choose. Replay value is strong thanks to the stat tracking encouraging both fast playthroughs and limited jumping runs. In a market where shallow experiences define far too many releases, it's wonderful to see a developer such as Alpha Secret Base treating the medium and its audience with respect, delivering quality titles such as this.

The game is fully playable regardless of the user's language. The in-game tutorial explains the gameplay concept nicely, and the way too catchy soundtrack feels fitting as Ganbare Natsuki San is one which will certainly see repeated play. Although Alpha Secret Base fans may express some disappointment in how similar the game looks to some of its other titles such as Kaiten Patissier, the graphics are clean if unimpressive and full of personality. The windowed view is gives the appearance of Ganbare Natsuki San being a little known SNES game fed through an emulator and then placed for sale on the Xbox Indies tab, which isn't exactly a terrible thought even if I'd rather see the game take advantage of the entire display.

The few items of interest which could see improvement in no way diminishes what Alpha Secret Base has accomplished here. Platformer fans should enjoy the original if clunky gameplay employed, and the game has more than enough levels to satisfy. When the most pressing negative I can think of is how the game inexplicably maps the pause/escape menu to the Y button instead of the Start or Back buttons, it's safe to say that Ganbare Natsuki San is a excellent game which has no real reservations to prohibit recommending to anyone.

★★★★☆
July 10, 2010
October 26, 2009 | 80 points
Developer | Video | Download

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