It’s a Roaches life…
Daedalic Entertainment and Koboldgames bring point and click adventure gaming to a new level of bugginess in Journey of Roach by the way of two amusing cockroaches called Jim and Bud who find themselves in post-apocalyptic world, after discovering their environment has been blasted by a nuclear explosion. These two cockroaches begin their epic journey underground and through a series of tunnels and debris, they will encounter some colourful characters along as they try to solve a selection of puzzles, usually to get themselves out of precarious situations. Jim and Bud aren’t the smartest bugs in the insect world, but gradually they will find themselves exploring their environment and working together to overcome everything the post apocalyptic world throws at them.
Controlling the cockroach is easier than you may think. The WASD buttons enable you to crawl up walls, move along surfaces and across ceilings, while all the time the camera moves around with the bug, giving you a side view of their 3D world. Jim and Bud engage in their own conversations and interact with one another through thought bubbles. There is no dialogue to listen to, but the bugs manage to get their points across and it’s amusing to see their thought processes.
While the storyline isn’t particularly deep (What did you expect, they are Cockroaches!), you’ll find the vast majority of your time will be spent trying to solve the various puzzles. The puzzles start out fairly simple, but the difficulty soon ramps up, offering the player a decent challenge. The game offers a standard inventory slot, where you can store objects of interest gathered along the way, and some of the puzzles will involve using items or combining them to proceed. Once you’ve placed the right object in the correct position, small jigsaw pieces come up to indicate that you’ve done the puzzle correctly. It can be frustrating having to wander back and forth trying to find the right item for a given puzzle, but it is the puzzles that push the game forward and any frustration is soon forgiven as the next puzzle approaches.
There is a hint system available should the puzzles prove just too difficult, and an indicator that will point you in the right direction for the solution. Neither of these systems will solve the puzzle for you, which is handy as the puzzles are the main aspect of the game, but for those that are really stuck, they will be a welcome addition. The fact that the game only lasts a couple of hours from start to finish, and can be over in well under an hour if the player were to solve the puzzles instantly, means that getting the most out of the game will involve struggling with the puzzles where needed.
Cockroaches aren’t suppose to be cute, charming or amusing. However, Daedalic have managed to carry it off in this new adventure game. Daedalic and Koboldgames have captured the life of these Roaches with some great graphics, both cel-shaded environments complete with some comic book style animation. Jim and Bud are a bit on the clumsy side for the vast majority of the time, and through their comedic thought bubble conversations they offer a giggle or two along the way.
Daedalic Entertainment are now well known for their quality adventure games and have produced plenty of delightful and stimulating titles, along with some seriously compelling story-lines. If you are a point and click fan fancying a couple of hours of puzzle filled adventure, and don’t mind Cockroaches, then Journey of a Roach can be recommended to keep you amused and raise a smile or two along the way.