There have been many retro ports as of late on the Nintendo Switch, a lot of which have been coming from ININ Games. However, how often do we get to play a long-lost game from the past for the very first time? That’s the case with their newest release, Clockwork Aquario. Clockwork Aquario is from legendary developer Westone and had been lost for almost three decades. This seems to be the last title they ever worked on and it’s finally here for all to play and enjoy. The game is a colorful side-scrolling action game that will take you back to the days when games like this were super popular.
Clockwork Aquario is set in a colorful world full of beautifully designed pixel art. The graphics here are very reminiscent of how games looked in the early ’90s. In fact, ININ Games did not change much to the game and tried to preserve the original vision of the game as best they could. That includes all the art, animations, and music.
What they did change was some of the gameplay elements. mainly what you can do outside of the game. Mainly, there are a few new ways to play the game. First of all, they added some extra difficulty levels to this and each one modifies the game a tiny bit.
- Training Mode – This is used to learn the mechanics and you can play the first two levels of the game like this. You will have unlimited credits in this mode.
- Easy Mode – Base game but you get 9 credits total to complete the game.
- Normal Mode – Base game but you only get 5 credits to beat the game.
- Hard Mode – Base game but you get 3 credits to beat the game.
- Arcade Mode – This mode only unlocks after you beat the game on any difficulty setting. Arcade mode lets you modify various settingsof the game (service mode).
Lastly, there’s also a Bonus Stage Mini-Game Mode which is a mini-game that is played between levels 3 and 4 and usually only in 2-player mode. This mode lets you play that without going through the game.
The gameplay in Clockwork Aquario is actually fairly basic for a side-scroller. Choose between the characters of Huck Londo, Elle Moon, or the giant robot Gush to fight against evil and baddies. It really doesn’t matter who you choose however as the gameplay doesn’t seem to change between them, as far as I can tell. Attacks consist of jumping on top of or hitting enemies from below. You can also punch them. A single attack will stun the enemy and a double attack will kill them. You can however pick them up after a single attack and throw them at other enemies.
While the game may seem a little simplistic, it’s challenging as heck and difficult to stay alive. At least at first. It’ll take a lot of playthroughs to really get the mechanics down and the timing of what enemies do. This is a typical ’90s style side-scrolling platformer, which means it should take you a while before you actually beat the game.
With that said, Clockwork Aquario is actually a pretty decent game. If you’re a fan of these types of retro games, you’ll most likely love this, especially since this is also a game that no one has seen from such a legendary developer. This is truly a treasure and one that should be played.
Received game from developer and/or publisher for coverage purposes.
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