(WiiWare)

Art Style: Orbient (WiiWare)

Game Profile

Explore the universe like never before in Art Style: Orbient. Take control of gravity and anti-gravity and carefully maneuver your small star through 50 stages set in multiple galaxies. Collide with other stars to absorb them and make your own star expand in size, or capture the stars in your orbit and have them become your satellites.

Space isn’t empty, though, and you’ll have to avoid bumping into obstacles or getting pulled into a black hole. If you feel like relaxing while still being challenged, this is the game for you. Its combination of simple controls, atmospheric sound and unique environment make for an experience unlike any other.

Game Review

Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Stephen Witkowski

Does this bit generations remake keep the spirit of the original game intact?

Back in 2006, Nintendo published a series of games on the Game Boy Advance in Japan called bit Generations, which were a sister series to the DS’s Touch Generations games meant to illustrate the beginnings of video games. One of the games released in...

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User Comments (78)

KnucklesSonic8

#1

KnucklesSonic8 said:

I'm definitely giving this a try. It sounds great. Reminds me of the upcoming games, Gravity & Vertigo.

That_Guy_from_Faxana

#5

That_Guy_from_Faxana said:

First I imagened is some Solar jetman type game with all this gravity going on, but the absorbing mechanics makes it sound like Katamari. We´ll see how it turns out.

KeeperBvK

#6

KeeperBvK said:

Sounds a bit like bit Generations: Orbital.
Definitely looking forward to the review. :)

RonF

#7

RonF said:

I am curious, I am looking for more information before deciding about this one. Considering I have now Bomberman to play, I have no problem in waiting a little more.

Adam

#8

Adam said:

I love Nintendo surprises. They should just release every game like this. Sounds at least decent.

Objection

#10

Objection said:

This sounds really good! I am seriously considering getting this, but I'd like to see some reviews, pics, vids first! ;)

thewiirocks

#11

thewiirocks said:

@zoipi - bit Generations Orbital was described by the handheld gaming site MoDojo as 'a simplified Katamari Damacy'. So if you've played Katamari, this game might be somewhat similar. :)

MayhemStaff

#13

Mayhem said:

Watched the video on the Nintendo Channel, seemed interesting. Will keep an eye open for reviews before buying.

Terra

#16

Terra said:

Reminds me of Super Mario Galaxy too. Didn't realize this was a remake. Too be honest, i didn't know there was a game to remake but I'm curious to know more so I want to see a review. It is a nice surprise from Nintendo, i just hope they don't make a too regular habit of revealing the game by releasing it without info beforehand. Then again, they really do like to keep their games developed secretly until they're ready to reveal info

AlexSays

#17

AlexSays said:

This looks/sounds terrible.
This has the feel of a game Nintendo had in it's closet, and released for a few extra bucks.
Hopefully the money they make off this is used to support their retail games.

Update: Well according to IGN's review, I was wrong.
This still can't be a game Nintendo is overly enthusiastic about though.
They provided absolutely no information about this game before it's release, and they released it the same exact time Hudson releases their huge game, being Bomberman.

#18

said:

This is definitely a bad game. The only good games on the WiiWare right now are Bomberman Blast, Dr. Mario Rx, and MegaMan 9 of course. Other than that, yuck!

chiefeagle02

#19

chiefeagle02 said:

I generally like "Art-Style" games (I bought Electroplankton back in the day and still play it). I've read the Oribital article that thewiirocks had up. It definitely looks interesting, but I think I'll wait around for a bit and see where this goes as far as a WiiWare title. Conveniently, I do have exactly 600 points left over...

SupermarketZombies

#20

SupermarketZombies said:

@Thomas
Its made by the same guys that made Electroplankton??? Might be a must buy for me if the score is at least average. I've always wanted to play Electroplankton :(

chiefeagle02

#22

chiefeagle02 said:

@SupermarketZombies
Nah, Electroplankton was made by Toshio Iwai and Art Style: Orbient is based on a Japan-only Bit Generations title called "Orbital" developed by skip Ltd. I compare them because they're both "Artsy" type games, emphasizing simplicity in the graphics department, easy to learn, and good fun.

I downloaded this tonight (by accident, actually), but it's pretty good. I'd give it a 7/10 because the price is good for what you get.

Objection

#24

Objection said:

@Badknux
Where the hell is LostWinds, Magnetic Twist, and FFCC on that list? Those are the games i've gotten the most out of my digital buck. Well, I guess you're entitled to your own opinion :P BTW, I agree about Bomberman, it's the next game I shall download.

Cheezy

#26

Cheezy said:

Well this was unexpected, but from Nintendo. Weird how there was no announcement of this game at all. That doesn't happen much...

kitroplious

#27

kitroplious said:

WOW! I just saw that review on IGN...(Art Style: ORBIENT)
8.5 is pretty good! Worth the 600 Wii Points! :)

i_am_error

#29

i_am_error said:

Great game. I'm really happy the bitGenerations gets revamped and released stateside on the WiiWare.

StarDust4Ever

#30

StarDust4Ever said:

Looks like a cross between Mario Galaxy and Asteroids. That was a long, boring video. Looks like SPOGS might have some competition...

CanisWolfred

#31

CanisWolfred said:

I'll give this a shot when I have 600 points to burn. It looks fun, but it definitely is pretty low-priority for me.

thewiirocks

#32

thewiirocks said:

See my review in this thread. Final verdict is 6/10. :(

EDIT: BTW, this is certainly the same game as bit Generations Orbital. Check out the video evidence and compare with the one at the top of this thread.

EDIT2: I just noticed a huge difference between the GBA game and the Wii game. In the GBA game, the objects are fixed to their locations. In the Wii version, the planets move around just as much as you do. This change makes a huge difference in the game's dynamics.

Kenji510

#33

Kenji510 said:

This game looks pretty interestin and cool to play.. it got good reviews too... kinda reminds me of that game "flOw" for the PS3. :)

earthworm

#34

earthworm said:

I've never seen the GBA original, but I'm really impressed with this game. I'm almost halfway through it, and I think it may have a chance of dethroning Toki Tori as my favorite Wiiware game.

ness

#35

ness said:

@ thewiirocks: That is wrong. In the GBA game the objects are not fixed to their locations, they also move around like you.

@ Orbient: I hope this game comes to Europe this friday, i love Orbital and the whole 'Bit Generations'-series (i imported 5 games of them) =).

Bass_X0

#36

Bass_X0 said:

...its Virtual Console week here in Europe (Megaman 9 was last week remember). WiiWare games next week. There is no guarantee we will see it next week - we're still waiting for several games that have been released in America for a while. That said, this is a Nintendo game so they will probably release their own games quicker than third party games.

ness

#37

ness said:

Ah, i forgot, so probably you're right, but on 29 August there were 2 VC and 2 WiiWare games too, so i hope this was not an exception^^, although i know that this was on a Hanabi-Week.

Bensei

#38

Bensei said:

Could it be that this game was released on GBA too on the Japanese only Bit generations? I remember seeing a sticker that looks like that logo in Brawl...

thewiirocks

#39

thewiirocks said:

@ness - Are you certain? I'm looking at the video and nothing is moving in relation to space as a whole. Object are in orbit around other objects inside their shell, but otherwise the player's planet is the only thing moving.

Watch the video. See how the stars remain fixed in place relative to each other? That suggests that the only motion is that of the player. This is quite different from Orbient, where the planets move around each other in complex dances. e.g. There's one level where you are orbiting a super-massive gas giant. Many smaller planets are also orbiting this giant, but each of them is carrying its own orbiting baggage. Some of it is not affixed to the shell of the orbit and can be yanked a bit out of its orbit. (Though that's another thing that bugs me. Orbiting items seem to have a rubber-band that yanks the orbiting items back in place. Quite different from the chaotic paths of a true orbital system.)

ness

#40

ness said:

@ Bensei: Yes, this game for WiiWare is a remake of a 'Bit Generations' title called 'Orbital'. And you are right, the sticker is also in Brawl^^.

@ thewiirocks: To be sure, i played Orbital 5 minutes ago on my GBA, and i find some levels, where the planets are moving, too. There is one level for example, where a giant planet with some smaller ones is the central of the "stage", but there a also some other planets moving, and even fly through the bigger one, but they don't effect each other.
In Orbital are 8 worlds with 5 levels each. The video you have posted does not show every level of the game, that is the reason =).

thewiirocks

#41

thewiirocks said:

@ness - You mean like the level at 3:00 in this video? I don't have video of the same stage in Orbient, but it's quite different. Trust me. If you give Orbient a try, you'll find the physics and dynamics to be a smidge different than Orbital.

Ricardo91

#42

Ricardo91 said:

I remember the Bit Generation series from Brawl stickers too. They sound like interesting games. I'll check this one out; Looks like the Wiiware's solution to flow, except you can actually die.

alaaji

#43

alaaji said:

I never played the original but I had exactly 600 points and the 8.5 that IGN gave made me give it a whirl. I've enjoyed the game so far. Online leader boards would have been nice but oh well. It's still fun! Now, I need to download Bomberman. :)

ness

#44

ness said:

@ thewiirocks: Not really, because these planets are all orbiting the big one. I mean planets with routes which are not influence by other planets. Many of them fly in different directions. So Orbital should be like Orbient with not much difference.

Terra

#45

Terra said:

While it's nice to see Nintendo taking a bigger focus on WiiWare with the new Art Style games (2 More next month apparently), i hope they don't just remake all the Bit Generation games and do new, original games as well, whether they be completely new games inside the series or games outside it. To Be fair, they will seem like new games to those who are unaware and to those who didn't import the games.

Also, i'd like to see games outside Art Style, say, based on Classic Nintendo franchises like Dr Mario & Germ Buster was. It would be awesome to see games that are unlikely to end up as retail releases like Ice Climbers or Balloon Fight

Outrunner

#46

Outrunner said:

Ooh! More stuff like this please! Simple and innovative. Maybe could've spruced up the menu's and stuff a bit. Online leaderboards would indeed be good too but still, I'm watching this one.

thewiirocks

#47

thewiirocks said:

@ness - Believe what you will. I have now had a chance to play both. The setup is similar, but the physics are different. This makes the Wii version more difficult and far less satisfying in a variety of ways. I highly recommend you try Orbient for yourself, then tell me they have the same physics model.

ness

#48

ness said:

O.K., i will try it, but why does IGN and N-Sider should not say anything about differences between the two versions?
The video on this page also show me the same mechanics, except the visuals are better and more detailed.
But whatever, i hope this game comes to Europe this or next Friday, then i will see if something is different^^.

CorbsAdmin

#50

Corbs said:

I can't believe this wasn't one of the Bit Generation games I picked up for my GBA years ago. I guess this one slipped under the radar. Great little title, I can't wait to see the other Bit Generation games remade on the WiiWare service.

DazzaAdmin

#52

Dazza said:

Stephen is reviewing Orbient for us, it shouldn't be too much longer now :-p

professorlayton

#53

professorlayton said:

I downloaded Orbient on Monday, and at the moment, it's my favorite WiiWare game. I've already reviewed the game and I gave it a 9.

jesao

#54

jesao said:

D'oh! So all that money I spent importing the Bit Generations games, and if I'd waited I could have just downloaded them on WiiWare.

Oh well. The boxes were nice. Plus "Bit Generations" sounds way cooler than "Art Style".

I might just have to buy DigiDrive again if / when it comes out though, considering it is the Best Puzzle Game Ever [..and no, I don't work for whoever it is that made the game..]

naisatoh

#55

naisatoh said:

@ ness and thewiirocks

After hearing about Orbient, I went and downloaded Orbital as a preview. I ended up finishing Orbital before downloading Orbient and actually noticed a few major differences between the two games. In addition to the obvious graphical upgrade, Orbient adds a few features that weren't in the original.

1. thewiirocks was right in saying that the physics in Orbient is different from Orbital. However, I believe this makes the Wii version easier to play, because I feel the physics are actually more accurate, and therefore, more intuitive.

2. Unlike Orbital, I noticed that some of the planets/stars in Orbient are affected by your gravity/anti-gravity. It doesn't really affect the large planets or the planets that are already in orbit. However, smaller, isolated bodies, like some of the "goal stars" will react to the pull. Again, this makes the physics in Orbient feel more accurate.

3. The BIG difference in Orbient is the addition of "black holes." These bodies will perpetually give off gravitational pull regardless of your actions. These add some difficulty, and are, in my opinion, a great addition.

I've played through about half of Orbient and can confirm that there is significant overlap between level design. However, the new additions and physics models make Orbient an entirely new experience regardless. Even if you've played through the GBA original or never heard of the game until this week (like me), I would definitely recommend this title. I would give this an 8/10.

My pros:

  • original physics based puzzler by a first party developer
  • upgraded graphics and features from it's GBA original
  • only 600 points (importing the GBA title will cost you almost $20)

My cons:

  • lack of online leaderboards
  • extra lives are easy to obtain, but don't carry over from day to day
  • why did they change the name to Orbient?!

I'm looking forward to more remakes from the eclectic and hard-to-find bit Generations series.

Starwolf_UK

#56

Starwolf_UK said:

only 600 points (importing the GBA title will cost you almost $20)
More than $20...if you find anywhere with a copy. Its retail price was ¥2000 which means places like Play-Asia will charge $25 and there there is shipping which tends to be about $3.

Nice write-up though.

Edit: Just OFLC rated today so I guess a European release of the 10th is too soon...hope i'm wrong though :P

Nintendork

#58

Nintendork said:

Contrary to what my good friend pikmin95 says, this game is one of my favorite Wiiware games.

whalleywhat

#62

whalleywhat said:

Game really needs leaderboards. I don't understand why you'd make a score based game without them anymore. Nintendo is dumb sometimes. Still, fantasic game, easily worth 600 points.

pikmin95

#63

pikmin95 said:

I changed my mind. Looks kinda cool after I watched the whole video. =]
But 126 blocks? For me that's a lot, because I only have 77 blocks left. Everything on my Wii memory is practically VC. Looks like its time to get a memory card. Damn Nintendo needs to make more space on the console.

jeffo

#64

jeffo said:

For 6 bucks this is a no-brainer. Basically this game relies on one thing, addictive, yet laid back gameplay. the two-button gameplay makes it so easy anyone can have a go. And the addictive factor is through the roof. World of Goo may be the best thing on Wii-Ware right now, but the 2 Art-Style games published by Nintendo, though far-less polished are so damned addictive, easy to pick up and hard to put down, that for 6 bucks each, you should own them both.

cyko

#69

cyko said:

I love all art style games but I don't know which one choose. In my opinion, I think orbient is the best but I just read the review and they all got 8. I think I will go with my felling and coose orbient but can someone give me his opinion?

gameking23

#70

gameking23 said:

Orbient seems to be a very good game if you feel that you should get it u should get it. The only other art style game I would choose is Cubello due to the very unique game play. I have a warning about Rotohex if you have a hard time telling yellow and light lime green do not get this game. Other than that it is a fun game.

Clayfrd

#71

Clayfrd said:

@cyko - I've only tried Orbient so far, and I love it. When I get the others, I'll let you know what I think. I'm still working on Orbient. It's a really fun game, especially for the price.

ness

#72

ness said:

@ thewiirocks: Now i have a chance to play Orbient, and again i have to say i cannot see that any game mechanics changes. It's still the same gameplay, unless that the graphics and sounds are better.

@ "More than $20...if you find anywhere with a copy. Its retail price was ¥2000 which means places like Play-Asia will charge $25 and there there is shipping which tends to be about $3."

In the end Play-Asia sold the games for around 10$ and less.

lockelocke

#73

lockelocke said:

As a puzzler fan, I am totally hooked. This is the first puzzler I really love outside of the 'colored block' family, and I highly recommend it to any hardcore puzzle fan, or anyone looking for a sedative but challenging experiance.

Having downloaded this, I'd have to change my top 5 WiiWare DLs of 2008 to:
5. Lost Winds
4. Art Style: Orbient
3. Star Soldier R
2. World Of Goo
1. Mega Man 9

vonboy

#75

vonboy said:

i just bought artstyle cubello last week and i loved it. i thinking of getting this one too, when i actually have the money >.<

Pastry

#77

Pastry said:

This one doesn't look the same as the other Art Styles, this one isn't really doesn't focus on art as much.

Klapaucius

#78

Klapaucius said:

The difficulty curve is so steep, it goes from fun and relaxing to annoying and stressful within 30 minutes. I was hoping for a nice relaxing game, and was pretty disappointed. I guess I just need to put more time into it.

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