de Blob Xbox One X Review

de Blob's characters and world have a distinct personality but the gameplay weighs it down, draining a lot its life

By Grayshadow, Posted 13 Nov 2017

Originally released back in 2008 de Blob had an interesting concept. As de Blob you are charged with bringing back color and fun to the world by splattering paint all over the city. While the game was well-received for delivering a solid adventure for the Wii, which was starving for third-party content, a lot of what is offered here doesn't hold up well. While its core mechanics remain mediocre at best eventually the dull gameplay will have you doing the same thing over and over again. 

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Players will explore and liberate Chroma City after being taken over by the INKT Corporation. This military dictatorship led by Comrade Black is dedicated to eliminating all color and successfully drains the color of the world using his army of Leechbots. It citizens have been turned into "Graydians" and forced into serving as menial labor for their overlords. With the help of the Color Underground de Blob seeks to return color and fun back into a world. The story isn't interesting but the cutscenes are excellently crafted with a combination of cartoonish animation and goofy gestures.

As the de Blob players roll around the environment and collect paint from Paintbots that roam around the levels in 3 colors; red, blue, and yellow. Colors can be combined into orange, green, purple, and brown which allows de Blob to color the environment by simply touching interactive objects and smearing them in its current color and selected pattern. de Blob's color alters soundtrack reacts with sudden beats, adding more instrumentation depending on which color is being used. As de Blob absorbs color it grows bigger, with its maximum size being 100 and draining with everything it colors and enemy it destroys. This can also be an issue since de Blob gets prone to sticking to walls much more frequently once it reaching its biggest size, leading to a lot of vexing jumping moments.

Levels are separated into sections, with gates acting as barriers. Players must gain a precise amount of points before gaining access to a new area. Points are rewarded for painting the environment, rescuing citizens, and completing challenges. Everything is timed in de Blob but fortunately, extensions are given liberally from saving citizens, painting, and completing challenges. If you paint enough of an area a Fusion Generator appears that burst into a lush array of colors and flora for a particular area.

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While de Blob is free to paint most of the environment some tests offer unique challenges. These missions are given to you by the Color Underground, marked by symbols on the map, and have you coloring certain buildings specific colors or saturated a landmark to progress. Some challenges are paramount to completing the level but the game doesn't tell you which these are. While the layout changes with each new stage the gameplay doesn't change much. You'll do the same thing over and over again until the finale. 

You're given a series of awards based on your performance during and after each level. Awards are based on your performance such as how many challenges were completed, time left, and what percentage of the area was painted. It's a nice addition to keep track of everything done at the level, especially for completionists. 

There are hazards to avoid throughout the adventure. Ink is the most common danger, turning de Blob black. This causing de Blob to lose his ability to paint temporary and remove color from the world. Ink can be washed out with water but the INKT forces can send out troopers that range from footsoldiers to those wielding ink guns, turrets, tanks, jetbikes, and those immune to certain color attacks. Other risks include hotspots, electric plates, and spikes. None of the enemies are particularly difficult since you can gather paint easily and death isn't much of a plently since checkpoints are libreally distributed. 

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After completing each level players can return to each stage with added challenges. Each stage has 2 challenge levels linked to each that provides unique situations such as races, defeating large amounts of enemies, and paint trials. Free Paint allows you to travel the environment freely without any enemies, a time limit, or goals. And Blob Party is a multiplayer mode where up to 4 players can play, but this is limited to local play only.

For its price de Blob delivers a solid adventure. Venturing throughout, splattering paint around each area, and completing challenges is fun for a few levels but quickly loses its luster. The soundtrack is whimsical and helps complement the characters and gameplay but, towards the end, the game begins to decay as you try to color everything in paint once again. The characters and the world have a distinct personality but the gameplay weighs it down, draining a lot its life.

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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General Information

de Blob 2017

55/100

Platform(s): Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360, PS3, PC
Publisher(s): THQ, THQ Nordic, THQ Wireless
Developer(s): Blue Tongue Entertainment, Universomo, Helixe, BlitWorks
Genres: Platform game, Puzzle video game
Themes: Color
Release Date: 2017-11-16

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