Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
I think every child, at one point or another, used to live in a fantasy world where the floor was lava and completely off limits. Many of us have jumped across furniture to avoid touching the floor in an attempt to bring more fun into our lives. Who knew this simple concept would be the basis of the incredible indie game, ClusterTruck.
Beyond the Concept
There isn’t much more to explain about ClusterTruck’s concept except to mention you are jumping from truck to truck to reach your goal at the end of the level. At the time if writing this review, there are 10 world’s in the game, each containing 10 levels. Every world has its own theme and many of them contain unique perils that make the simple concept go from easy to very hard at times. The laser world stands out most for difficulty as its bright red, deadly lasers do a good job of stopping you in your tracks as you manically jump from truck to truck.
My first impessions of ClusterTruck were just how crazy the levels can be. Jumping from great heights or jumping through obstacles creates an adrenaline rush like no other game around at the moment. You can (literally) fly through some levels really quickly but there’s definitely more challenging levels that will require multiples attempts before you can move forward. This gives the game longevity but what gives the game it’s replayability?
There is undeniably a lot of content here to keep you busy but why would anyone play any of these levels again once they have been completed? Well, considering there are plenty of special abilities to unlock using the points you earn from completing levels, there is plenty of variation and experimentation in how you play the game. You may have completed level 1 or 2 will no abilities but they become a completely different prospect when you can complete them using the grapple hook or truck boost power up!
There are 8 movement abilities to unlock and an additional 6 utily abilities that can be doubled up to give the game a lot of diversity. You might choose to combine double jump with time slow or the jet pack ability with a truck spawn ability, either way you can customise to your preferred load out. These abilities will also give players the opportunity to strategise about the best abilities to use to complete levels in the quuckest times and get their names at the top of the global leaderboards.
Big Bad Boss
You would be right to assume that the game would appear to be quite repetitive since the concept remains unchanged throughout but the game is incredibly challenging. In fact, the final boss level is one of the most challenging levels I have played in a game this year! If you can complete this game within a few hours then I respond with ‘witchcraft’!
The final boss level is such a nice change from the previous levels that it is disappointing more boss levels were not included in the game. Especially since the sense of accomplishment when you defeat the boss is unrivalled!
If you end up playing the game on PC the added bonus is you will be able to play fan created levels which takes this game up a notch. Hopefully this will be a feature that is added to the console version in the not too distant future.
I have played many indie games this year with Overcooked and Firewatch remaining particular highlights but ClusterTruck has just muscled its way to the top of my favourite indie games list in 2016. There are plenty of levels and power ups to keep this game interesting and the levels provide an amazing platform to strategise as each level can be completed in a host of different ways. You may get frustrated from time to time but there’s no doubt in my mind that most players will keep playing until Al levels have been completed. This may just be the best game you buy all year!