Top-of-the-line reviews! (The Crigence Critique)

Hello @Crigence here is for your perusal. All art music and code were done in two weeks for the jam. The original concept is from a few scribbled notes in one of my old sketchbooks from 2013. I’ll post them on my page at some point. Have fun!


Hope ya don’t mind

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If you want, you could go in the editor and see the credits. Special thanks to scrap studios for making the art for it.
Anyway thank you for the review, I’m glad you really liked the game for I had a lot of fun making it.

PS: the hit boxes do tend to get really buggy as the player grows and I don’t know how to fix that. The crap ton of tutorial dialogue was because I planned on the game being much longer, lol. Two weeks just wasn’t enough. Anyway thanks.


Here’s my submission for the Flowjam:

It’s a cooking sim(ish) game called Five Star Frenzy. Obviously made in 2 weeks.


I haven’t bothered looking at anything relating to Flowjam 2021, but I’m starting to draw a pattern here judging by the Flowjam games iv’e seen so far…

Is the theme “Growing”?


It is :slightly_smiling_face:

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I’m not positive you didn’t cheat

Let’s get the positives out of the way first: This game has potential, not only to be a good game but to introduce procedurally generated content to the general Flowlab community. The negatives? The games implementation of its main gimmick is horrible and on top of everything else iv’e said about the game, it suffers from the worst thing a game can possibly be: It’s just not fun.

+The main menu is OK (Minus the mysterious, floating plant), but it desperately needs some music
+The scrolling camera is alright, does its job fine
+The procedurally generated levels are neat, but a gimmick is just that: A gimmick. Sure, it’s unique by Flowlab standards but anyone whos played The Binding of Isaac can tell you that this game’s implementation of it is lazy and uninspired
+The games bright, happy exterior hiding a dark, gloomy interior is clever (If misleading)

-Has nobody been reading my previous reviews? Has nobody figured out you have to actually tell the player how to progress in cutscenes? (It’s LMB by the way, ugh)
-Apart from the lack of instruction on the opening cutscene, the cutscene itself is dull and lazy. And no: Being self-aware about you being dull and lazy doesn’t make it OK
-After playing for a little while, it’ll hit you like a ton of bricks that “…Wait a minute, this game has 1 sound-effect!”. Being a Flowjam game is NOT an excuse here, as sound is one of the most important tools at a games disposal!
-“Did I mention that Joe has magic powers?” No, you didn’t.
-Enemies don’t despawn or disable at all, meaning enemies can attack you while off-screen and you have no way to counter it
-Speaking of enemies: They never stop spawning, and can spawn DIRECTLY on top of the player, causing health loss you couldn’t of possibly seen coming! This causes lag and unfair deaths CONSTANTLY

Scores (Scale of 1/5)

:eye:Visuals - 2.5 (Nothing’s cohesive, so everything is bland)
:speaker:Sound - 1 (What sound?)
:books:Story - 1.5 (Badly written filler)
:joystick:Controls - 2.5 (Desperately needs more options, like what you see in an RPG)
:anger:Difficulty - 1.5 (Garry’s Mod horror map)
:gear:Stability - 2 (Laggiest game on Flowlab, hands down)

Final Score: 1.5/5
Proof that a gimmick can’t carry a game alone. Sorry, @MrMcMemerMan

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all I have to say is that my cuscenes in after math told you how to progress

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RISE gives a great preview of what’s to come in future Vipertech titles: Immense detail, interesting stories and charming visuals. Now, all Flowlab has to do is be stable enough to support such games. Sigh

+This games resolution is of impressive girth
+The games main-menu is lifeless, but i’m saying that’s a positive since the logo’s bird-polishing-a-window gives it all the life it needs and besides that, the depressing-ass music tells me it’s intentional
+“Press Space to Skip” That’s a rare, and beautiful sight to see in a Flowlab game. Treasure it…
+“I have… An idea… Take this” Magically slaps a wand in his hand. This games humor is great
+The location cards are a nice touch
+The grass flattens under your weight, and pops back up a few seconds later. Small details like this make me coom
+The smooth camera is a simple, yet great touch
+The cave level is genuinally creepy, good work!

-The opening cutscene is charming, yet flawed. For starters, the test goes at a fixed speed, which makes some text take 1 second to read and 10 years to scroll-over, and others 10 years to read and 1 second to scroll-over. This is the ONE time automation is shit…
-The god-rays appear like they’re on a treadmill, which is admittedly funny, but you should’ve just took the cartoon approach and made them “Cycle”

*Bird polishing a window > Plague Doctor riding a wand
*I was unable to get past level 2 because Flowlab disabled jumping, and there’s a reason why. Simply put it, for technical reasons I don’t understand: Flowlab is inherently buggy due to differences in hardware and monitor, yet, however, rendering the game directly on your desktop fixes this on its own. See where I’m going with this? “Brower-only” Flowlab causes half of the bugs in most Flowlab games.

Scores (Scale of 1/5)

:eye:Visuals - 4 (Needs more detail)
:speaker:Sound - 4 (Needs more of it, but what’s there is great)
:books:Story - 4 (Simple, yet effective, story)
:joystick:Controls - 2.5 (Not a big fan)
:anger:Difficulty - 3 (I wouldn’t even know)
:gear:Stability - 2 (I completely blame Flowlab here)

Final Score: 4/5
Grazer, make a desktop version of Flowlab. “Browser only” is not a good thing.


I churned-out 2 game reviews today, but I wasn’t able to get to Beard Your Own Adventure before Grazer could announce a winner, ugh

Good luck to all the Flowjam participants!


Could you review the finished Ace Vanguard? I’ve added quite a few features since then.

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yeah it’s pretty bad, made it in 2 weeks, and didn’t really focus lol

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This game is the opposite of “Grow to the Heavens!” in the sense that it’s a game with a central gimmick that does it right. Even if the game does a horrible job at setting expectations, it does a good job at doing pretty much all there is to do with its gimmick and doesn’t let it overstay its welcome or eat the game (…Debatable, come to think of it). Overall, well done!

+Being able to vandalize the “todorrobot games” logo on the main menu is a nice touch
+The (Admittedly basic) mouse-tracking behavior on the eyes is a creepy, but good touch
+OK, the subtle Scooby-doo reference was great
+This games main gimmick is clever (If just a cooler dialogue box)
+This games music sort-of builds off the previous song, giving the impression the music is progressing with you. And I love it
+The games changing backgrounds are a nice touch and help make the game feel even more alive, I just wish they took up more of the screen so they mattered more
+I take back (Some of) what I said in the negative notes, the “flavor text” at the top of the screen acts as a very clever way to guide the player in the right direction (Along with the players sense-of-style)!

-The company intro gave me tinnitus
-Not a fan of this games IPhone resolution
-Who the hell is “Johnny Reb”, and what is he doing in a Flowlab game?
-Uhhh… What am I doing in this game? The game itself barely explains what’s going on, you’re just sort of… Doing things until something happens
–The game doesn’t say so (For whatever reason), but your choices in how you “hair” the characters “facial” determine what you see next! For dumb-asses like me who thought this was gonna be a normal game where you shave peoples heads and get paid, it sets horrible expectations. This can be fixed by showing you what will happen if you pick either option on “baby face”.
-This games “Gameplay” isn’t really fun long-term, for the minute your interest in seeing new faces dies – So does the game.
-See that face in screenshot 3? I got to that by shaving my characters facial hair entirely, which you’d THINK would lead me back to “Baby face”, but no, we somehow got to a SoundCloud rapper

Scores (Scale of 1/5)

:eye:Visuals - 4.5 (Fantastic art, great direction)
:speaker:Sound - 5 (Incredible sound overall!)
:books:Story - 3 (???)
:joystick:Controls - 2.5 (Just a little clunky)
:anger:Difficulty - 3.5 (Can be confusing at times)
:gear:Stability - 4.5 (A few cosmetic ones, but that’s all)

Final Score: 4/5
Overall good, if gimmick-based, game. Even if it’s no “Competition winner” in my opinion


I think this quote is funny in retrospect, because iv’e reviewed every single game submitted since then lol

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Fantastic review @Crigence thanks for taking the time. I agree with pretty much everything you said. It’s definitely a “lite” game without score or specific goals. The only real reward is opening free play for making it to the wizard. This idea originally started as a choose your own adventure mini comic but it never made it past the concept stage, so that may be why the game feels a little unconventional. When I posted it to itch, I labeled it as Interactive Fiction. Lol.

Glad you liked the music and the references in the illustrations. 28+ of each was a real challenge in two weeks.

Oh. And Johnny Reb is a generic term for a Confederate Soldier. I knew some of my references might be a little obtuse, but I didn’t have a lot of time to rework the pages.

And when you shave the Amish Farmer you see that you’re leaving a little hair around the chin. The jump from farmer to sound cloud rapper makes me laugh every time. Actually, that’s pretty much every reference in the game. If it made me laugh then I kept it. Haha!

Thanks again for the review! Great stuff!!


hey crigence, is this still open? if so, could you do a review of august silence?


My game Adventure Jake doesn’t have sound yet, adding somewhere like tomorrow! Link:

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Yeah, it is, just taking a bit of a break as I shotgunned out a LOT of reviews before

You can expect a review for August Silence tomorrow!


really? that’s quick, thanks!