(Wii U eShop)

EDGE (Wii U eShop)

Game Review

EDGE Review

Europe PAL Version

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Simple but multi-sided

Two Tribes, in bringing its Classics series to the Wii U eShop, is among the first to deliver inexpensive experiences — especially with launch promotional prices — that have primarily made their home on other platforms for a good period of time. The updated edition of Toki Tori is based on its PC brethren, while now we have EDGE — originally developed by mobigame — which has been popular on smartphones, PC and as part of the PlayStation Minis series. It now arrives on the Wii U with all previous content included, and aims to prove that a simple concept, cleverly executed, translates well to a home console experience.

The core mechanic of EDGE, throughout its extensive range of over 100 levels, is to move a cube through a tricky obstacle course to the goal. Like many pick-up-and-play experiences it drives you on with a scoring system, from S+ down to D, motivating you to initially conquer a stage and, in the very likely instance you haven't indeed gained the top grade, try again.

The assessment of your performance is driven by multiple factors, with the need to collect small cubes throughout the stage essential to top grades, while EDGE time — which we'll come to shortly — is accumulated and reduced from your finish time. The collectibles are vital for speeding up your cube's movement, too, which becomes fundamental in later, more challenging levels.

The simple concept is allied with a control scheme that's equally basic. You move the cube with the left stick or D-Pad, and that's it — no buttons are used, while the GamePad screen mirrors the TV and doesn't include touch controls. This is for the best, as the virtual D-Pad available in smartphone and tablet versions of this title is nowhere near as useful as the physical controls. This is a difficult and challenging game — after some early stages set you up gently — and the physical controls are vital in providing the precision required to progress.

With that level of challenge come subtle twists in the level design that are, often, produced with enough wit and skill to draw a smile from even the most focused gamers. Screenshots may give an appearance of a simple game where you navigate through polygonal, cubic environments, but the execution goes beyond its visual aesthetic. With progress you'll meet challenging moving platforms that, occasionally, take the form of objects such as a giant robot, as well as switch systems, collapsing floors, rhythm-based springs and more. Some levels take an entirely vertical approach, in which you use a mini cube to climb a tower before tumbling back down, some force you to dash as quickly as possible, while others require you to sit back and carefully plot your route.

It's a throwback to a more challenging, arcade-like era in gaming, yet with a modern touch of exceptionally generous checkpoints and unlimited lives; you only fail a level if you give up. The aforementioned EDGE time best represents this, as you pivot your cube against moving blocks, defying gravity by clinging on at a precise angle. It's tough to master and used in increasingly devious ways, sometimes requiring timing and that pivot motion over quite a few seconds; we found this easiest to achieve on the digital input of the D-Pad, using the left stick for most other movement — it can be done with the analogue input, but with greater difficulty.

Driving all of this are the visuals and soundtrack, which look terrific in HD and with a smooth 60 frames-per-second performance. It looks great on a TV, bringing to mind a smoothed out and shiny 1080p iteration on the first 3D polygon graphics of the '90s, albeit far cleaner and pleasing on the eye. The soundtrack is fantastic, too, with retro-infused beats often merging with techno for a pumping accompaniment, with occasionally quieter moments for slower levels.

The crux is that EDGE provides a beautiful balance of clean presentation, a simple concept and strong execution. The only downside is that, occasionally, the fixed camera view can lead to unintentional falls into the abyss; as the checkpoints are so frequent, it's a minor problem. It's also debatable whether less skilled gamers will see much of the extensive level of content, but the generous accommodations given and the enjoyment on offer may be enough to coax these players to push themselves to improve and, by extension, broaden their gaming horizons.

Conclusion

As a simple gaming experience, EDGE comes close to providing the perfect budget download experience. There are presentation values both simple and delightful, and the basic premise of navigating a cube through a tough level is embellished with clever design. Perhaps the difficulty will drive some away, while an addition of camera control — even in a limited capacity — would have been welcome; yet this is a title that gets so much right. If you haven't owned EDGE on another system or — alternatively — only own it on a touch device, then this is a must-buy.

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User Comments (40)

ikki5

#1

ikki5 said:

Every time I look at this game, I get ever so more tempted to buy it.

wasf

#2

wasf said:

i'll buy after work asa im home! for 2 quids is unmissable!
soundtrack is terrific!!!

Nintenjoe64

#4

Nintenjoe64 said:

I've had this on my iphone for a few years and I thought the whole idea was that it was touch controlled. I didn't realise I was touching a virtual D-Pad which probably explains why I never got the hang of clinging-on to the moving blocks!

cammy

#5

cammy said:

I have this on my phone too, thanks to the wonderful Humble Bundles a few years ago. Really wanted to have this on my 3DS, I though the 3D effect would be wonderful.

Collo

#6

Collo said:

It is coming to 3DS soon! We've made it so that not only the depth changes, but also the field of view when you alter the slider. It works like a charm!

WiiLovePeace

#7

WiiLovePeace said:

I liked the touching the block concept on android but I can understand how using the d-pad or analogue stick makes the game easier & hence even more enjoyable to play. I love that they're throwing games at us for cheap prices, it's very awesome!

Spoony_Tech

#10

Spoony_Tech said:

I just realized looking at the levels zoomed out looks like the 3d maps in the Metroid Prime series! That would be cool if one of the levels actually was from Metroid!

Falchion

#12

Falchion said:

I have played it on my phone, its pretty good but its no toki tori. I think i will pass but it is a good buy.

Luigi_is_better

#13

Luigi_is_better said:

@Collo That's awesome to hear! I love both Toki Tori's and was going to get this too, but I might wait for the 3DS version now. Could you say if it'll be as cheap?

Dpullam

#15

Dpullam said:

@Collo Nice! I am looking forward to trying this game out then! It would be even better if it came at a discount when it is released like it did for Wii U. Any idea if it will?

Morph

#20

Morph said:

Easy purchase for me, great review and great price, i would like to see more games we have missed out on come to nintendo consoles

TruenoGT

#21

TruenoGT said:

Seems like 3D would be awesome for this game... probably will wait the 3DS edition, though for only $2...

unrandomsam

#23

unrandomsam said:

Personally I use the tilt controls on Android for this and they work pretty much perfectly. (Very rare that it happens so I might as well keep playing it that way).

maneauleau

#25

maneauleau said:

@kokirii it's only temporary.

At 2 euros the game is a steal, even if you are not into puzzle, just buy it to show our interest in cheaper games too.

kokirii

#26

kokirii said:

@Maneauleau thanks! It's only $1.99 USD for me which is technically a bit less than 2 euros! I normally try not to buy multiple games at once but since this is only 2 bucks I think I can manage to get it along with Mario 3D World tomorrow :)

Jazzer94

#27

Jazzer94 said:

This game is awesome, addictive and challenging great deal at the current price.

TruenoGT

#28

TruenoGT said:

Just snagged it and played the first 10 levels or so. Love it!! Super fun on the gamepad.

B3ND3R

#29

B3ND3R said:

I have this on my iPhone, it's pretty awesome! Definitely going to buy it since it's so cheap!

spinthelights

#32

spinthelights said:

Did anyone find it a bit offputting that there is an add for another game (Toki Tori 2+) right on the front menu of a paid game? It's like trailers they stick in retail Blu-Rays.

OorWullie

#33

OorWullie said:

@Collo Just want to let you know how great I think Zombie Tsunami is.It looks and plays great on my S4,would love to see this on Wii U :-)

Pod

#35

Pod said:

This game is great. I got it for free for PC, and have only played about half the levels, so I just might get it for Wii U, to support the developers and the porting effort, and play the rest from the comfort of.. well anywhere in the apartment, it seems.

FineLerv

#38

FineLerv said:

@spinthelights "Did anyone find it a bit offputting that there is an add for another game (Toki Tori 2+) right on the front menu of a paid game? It's like trailers they stick in retail Blu-Rays."

I see your point but whatever Two Tribes needs to do to stay in the Wii U business is fine by me. I want more of their games on my console! Besides, I see it more as a "you like this game, you might also like this other game we did!"

AdanVC

#39

AdanVC said:

I just downloaded this game today and It's awesome! The level design is great, and I love the music on each stage.

MegaAdam

#40

MegaAdam said:

This game is missing its North America release date in the sidebar; you guys should add that.

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