Around the wretched rock the ragged Raskull ran

From the outside looking in you could be mistaken for thinking Raskulls is fun. The cutesy characters and vibrant art style infer a boisterous world of frivolous joy destined to put a smile on your face. Not so. It’s a miserly and punitive experience that seems at odds with itself. As a collection of mini-games it lacks depth, primarily built around speed runs and collection challenges, that more often than not end in defeat.

Am I the only person who thought this was a platform game? It’s a racing game not a million miles away from The Club, that’s been bolted to a version of Tetris with vertical swimming sections. It delivers a joyless experience.

I want to like it but I can’t. It doesn’t give me anything, completing a challenge delivers no reward and the banal jokes aren’t funny. Halfbrick created Raskulls with XBLA in mind, for an audience that isn’t there and doesn’t get the joke. Halfbrick also delivered Fruit Ninja to the iOS platforms which also had an odd dure tone. Reasonless chopping fruit interspersed with random exploding bombs. Fun for about 20 seconds but stunning popular on the App Store. Does that define the iOS platform game experience? … ‘Nasty, Brutish and Short’ or a truncated psychadelic Cooking Mama for the MTV generation with the attention span of a gnat.

Halfbrick exhibit talent and imagination I only wish their games weren’t like the unwrapped candy at Halloween that your parents told you never to eat.

Raskulls is available on XBLA now.

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