Egz: Classic Platformer Meets Mini-Golf Mechanics in Mobile Game
Released on April 15, to the App Store, Lonely Woof's mobile game, Egz, re-imagines classic platformer mechanics with an emphasis on mini-golf.
Traversing each level, the goal of the game is to reach the glowing mark on the map where the adorable Egz creatures can live safely in an escalating hostile Universe.
At the will of the players, Egz are capable of jumping, bouncing off walls, and rolling across each unique level. However, with each launch of the circular creatures, damage is done to them upon landing or colliding with objects and environments. Therefore, players must carefully choose where to send their little Egz in hopes that they do not break and meet their tombs.
1. The Gameplay:
By tapping anywhere on the screen, players designate which direction to launch their Egz, which is visually represented by an arrow on the screen. Furthermore, players can extend the arrow to launch their Egz farther and with more force. This mechanic is similar to Angry Birds.
A unique mechanic of Egz is that players can choose to level up certain traits of their Egz, such as their jump ability, health bar, and damage resistance.
By completing levels, collecting each level's stars and bonus, experience points are earnt which can be used towards leveling, unlocking, customizing, or reviving Egz that have met their doom.
If a player chooses to level up their Egz jump ability, the arrow will extend even further, and the Egz will jump to their highest potential.
[Players can choose to level up their Egz abilities, here is my Egz Bernard]
Players can also participate in three different mini-games to unlock experience, or even share pictures of their Egz on social media. The three games are “Break Fit”, “Jump the Rope,” and “Weight Ninja.”
In Break Fit, players tap timed glowing circles that make their Egz dance. In Jump the rope, players simply play jump rope, and in my personal favorite Weight Ninja, players let their Egz catch circles with hearts on them, while slashing away weights with skulls in a fashion like Fruit Ninja.
[Jump the Rope Mini-game]
[Weight Ninja: Watch out Bernard!]
Furthermore, Egz introduces new mechanics from world to world, like canons that behave in a fashion reminiscent of Donkey Kong. There are swinging mechanics, propelling geysers, you can cut Egz off or throw them off course, and even zip lines for them travel down. At one point, gravity is also affected and reversed, which reminds one of Super Mario Galaxy.
In total, there are seven different “Egzoplanets” with 80 levels contained in these worlds.
[Bernard in a canon]
At the end of each world, a fight with a boss, or a side-scrolling timed event occurs to mix up the formula of previous levels.
[A Boss Fight]
Apart from the initial Egz that simply jump, there are others that are spiked and can stick to walls, halting momentum, or activate a protective bubble around the Egz to protect it from damage.
Egz is a light-hearted, comical, unique, and downright adorable game that is one of the better mobile games I have played in recent history.
The levels progress well and develop further with each additional environmental mechanic implementation. The game shines through with the boss fights, and I found myself enjoying those segments more so than some of the levels, because although each level is different in design, I felt that the boss fights were far more memorable overall.
Additionally, the experience system, although much improved in the June update, can sometimes be tedious. It seems like you honestly gain more experience through playing the three mini-games than by completing each level, no matter if you manage to collect the two additional stars each time. And because of that, playing the mini-games can become repetitive.
I found by playing the jump rope game I was able to earn enough experience to max out two of my Egz stats, and unlock each additional Egz having not even passed the first world.
A few different times while playing, my Egz would become randomly stuck despite their skill levels being maxed out, and I would be forced to restart the level entirely. I believe this is because my Egz fell from a high vantage, but it was slightly frustrating having to start completely over.
Furthermore, there were some instances where my Egz would land directly below a wall or overhang, and it was impossible to arch over the obstacle, meaning I would have to jump backwards, or roll away to be able to jump over the obstruction.
It was difficult sometimes to predict how far and where my Egz would land since the directional arrow is straight and not curved, and although I did get better as I progressed, some indication of trajectory might have improved this.
Understanding where your Egz will end up, or how far it will travel is vital to progressing through the game. If you send your Egz in a direction you did not intend for, or it moves in an entirely different way, you will have to wait for it to stop before you can re-launch it. This can often be time-consuming and unfairly punishing.
The spiked Egz can be a good counter to this because you can halt your momentum and regain control faster, but it does not always help.
With a price of $3.99, Egz is well worth the purchase for the unique platformer experience it offers. I genuinely enjoyed playing through the game, and it’s colorful and creative environments. The Egz themselves are also just way too cute, and I liked customizing my Egz as well. The cool boss fights are memorable, and overall, the game is a great take and mix of classic platformers.