Jun 24, 2017 Last Updated 11:03 AM, Jun 23, 2017

Karma Miwa Review

Published in Action
Read 688 times
Rate this item
(0 votes)
Tagged under

Karma Miwa is a cute, deliciously playable remake of the classic Atari game Snookie.

The gameplay relies on timing and planning rather than lightning-fast reflexes which make it a great game for kids or gamers who need a break from high-twitch games.  Not to say the game isn’t challenging, but frantic clicking is not required. However, bugs prevent it from being completely enjoyable. 

First Impression

I am always a fan of old-school games that don’t rely on blobby pixel art to fuel the nostalgia engine. On that front, Karma Miwa delivers. The red-hued environment is unusual, with an alien Mars-like feel. The primary character is a charming bird that peacefully waddles through each area in search of his companion. The music is soothing and well-matched to the leisurely pace of the game. 

Game Play

The method of survival in this game is to avoid (almost) everything that moves. The character has no attack, so timing and placement are critical. And the controls are simple; arrow keys to move, spacebar to jump. 

Jumping in Karma Miwa takes a little bit to get used to. In games like Mario Brothers, the player can alter the course or length of the jump mid-leap. This isn’t possible in Karma Miwa. Jumps are identical in length and duration every time which requires a change in strategy if you’re accustomed to games where jumps are mutable. In Karma Miwa, the character has to be in the right position before jumping, or you won’t end up where you want to go. The game is also timed, which increases the difficulty because you can’t waste a lot of time making sure you’re in just the right position. It also adds an element of puzzle games because jumping at the edge of the platform (or whatever you’re standing on at the time) is often the quickest way to die. At first, it requires a lot of trial and error, but it becomes easier after spending more time in the game. 

One nice feature of the game is the “Practice Mode.”  Typically, the player starts each level with five lives. If the bird gets hit more than twice in a level, it dies. If the player has exhausted all their lives, instead of rage quitting, the player can continue in “Practice Mode.” It doesn’t count for unlocking new levels or difficulty settings, but it does help to familiarize yourself with all the pitfalls in a level before playing “for real.” 

If the game seems too easy, there are additional levels of difficulty which are unlocked by completing all the areas in each level. Unfortunately, due to a bug in the game, I was unable to get past the first tier of difficulty. 

Problems 

Karma Miwa has three areas with several levels in each area.  There is a critical bug that makes the game unplayable outside the first area.  Every time the character dies in Area B or C, the game instantly crashes. This is a significant flaw and is made all the more annoying because I enjoyed the game enough to want to keep playing. 

Wish List 

Very few games have nothing I would like to add or change, and Karma Miwa is no exception. Although I enjoyed the core game, a few minor tweaks would make meaningful improvements. 

Color changes to the setting: The environment changes very little between the different levels and areas. It gets dreary after a while. A different hue for each area is a small change that would break up the monotony.

Preview of levels and area completion ratio: There is no in-game indication of how many levels are in each area, or how far you’ve progressed in the area. Since you can’t move forward until you’ve successfully beaten the current level, it is impossible to know if there is more content to unlock.

Based on older reviews, it appears that in previous iterations of the game it was possible to play both birds, and each one had different strengths. It does not seem to be an option in this release of the game, but now that I know it was there, I want it.  Would some levels be easier with the faster bird or the better jumper? I need to know! 

4

The Verdict

Karma Mia is a refreshingly relaxing game. It isn’t always easy, but the challenges aren’t stressful. It is the perfect game for days when you want to enjoy yourself without a ton of frustration. It’s only significant flaw is the bug that causes the game to crash repeatedly. Unfortunately, as this makes the game unplayable, it takes a toll on the overall score. 

Image Gallery

Phoebe Knight

Phoebe Knight is a freelance writer and novelist. She cut her baby teeth on the original King’s Quest, and has loved gaming ever since. Phoebe’s favorite games are usually weird ones with quirky storylines, but she has also logged an embarrassing volume of hours in sweeping open-world fantasy games like Skyrim and Witcher 3.

Website: www.phoebeknight.com

Related items

  • Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap Review

    After nearly three decades since the original release comes Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap, a worthy remake. Developer Lizardcube created an engaging universe, partly thanks to beautifully hand-drawn graphics and a fleshed out storyline. If you’re a fan of the timeless classics, this one is a worthy addition to your library: Wonder Boy stays true to its predecessor but successfully takes the title into the modern era of indie gaming.

  • Sundered ​Closed Beta Kicks Off with New “Resist” Trailer

    Thunder Lotus Games has kicked off the Closed Beta​ phase for Sundered ​with a dramatic new trailer, titled “Resist,” revealed by Sony. Showcasing footage from the highly anticipated action-horror game’s heretofore unseen first gameplay region and spectacular boss fight, Sundered​’s Resist trailer offers a tantalizing glimpse at the content awaiting the game’s Beta players this week.

  • Playcrafting Spring Expo 2017

    “Jus’ watch me, you joyk,” New York might say. While the city doesn’t attract big name game studios yet, it has a growing and energetic indie game scene. The members of this scene are gaming devotees looking for communal support and wishing for New York to support small entrepreneurship and can-do attitudes. Programs to help start-ups exist, like NYU-Poly, Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator, and NYC Seed. However, the landscape lacks initiatives which support video game developers, specifically.

More in this category: Typoman: Revised Review »

Latest Shows

Bulletstorm: Ful…

With AAA Anonymous, we discuss our latest AAA game addiction, until the next one replaces it. This episode covers Gearbox's remake of Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition... Featuring Du...

OPN DevLounge Mo…

Episode Six, Season One! OPN's DevLounge Monthly is a lively conversation between game developers on Twitch, on the hottest PC games to be released this upcoming month. Watch it on...

Out Soon

PC Gaming Incoming

Danganronpa Anot…

Komaru Naegi has been imprisoned inside a mysterious apartment for over a year. Her rescue is derail...

The Golf Club 2

Rise to fame and fortune in the largest, most dynamic golf game ever created. Assemble and join onli...

Pyre

A New World From the Creators of Bastion and Transistor, Pyre is a party-based RPG in which you lead...

Nex Machina Revi…

Not all efforts in nostalgia end in success, but with Nex Machina, Housemarque has crafted a fast and fun twin-stick shooter with crisp visuals and challenging gameplay. Flawed onl...

Subject A-119 Re…

Subject A-119 makes a strong showing with a variety of abilities, but the puzzles, through mechanical and logical limitations, quickly fatigue the player. Puzzle addicts might be t...

Rezrog Review

There are noticeable problems that detracted from the enjoyment of Rezrog: especially the mana consumption/potion issue. Despite the issues, Rezrog is an engaging experience in its...

Gorescript Revie…

With sparse environments that burst into color as the action unfolds, solid level design, and a low hand-holding, high satisfaction difficulty curve, Gorescript is already a title ...