Clustertruck Review-The Floor is Made of Lava Taken to The Extreme

Game Name: Clustertruck

Platform: Microsoft Windows, Linux, Mac, Playstation 4, Xbox One

Developer: Landfall Games

Publisher: tinyBuild Games

Price: £10.99 or $14.99

Remember that silly, yet enjoyable game you used to play as a kid, ‘The Floor is Made of Lava’? Looking back on it now, I can’t help feeling a certain sense of nostalgia, even if the idea itself is ridiculous. Moving from item of furniture to item of furniture in a frantic attempt to keep of the ground somehow filled our childish bodies with adrenaline. Ever had the urge to relive that experience? To swiftly jump from object to object in grace? To fell the blip of enjoyment as your feet live the ground? To dodge lasers and explosive missiles once again? Oh, sorry, that’s Clustertruck. Easy mistake to make. They do have quite a similar premise if you think about it…

The gameplay in Clustertruck is simple enough. Make it to the goal without touching the floor or any obstacles in your way; only trucks. You jump from truck to truck in the hopes of getting to the end and that’s pretty much the entire game. There are countless hurdles in your path however. These obstructions can be anything from collapsing scenery to swinging hammers from the medieval ages to colossal cogs that you are forced to somehow navigate your way through. In total, there are nine worlds, each with ten levels and their own theme: Desert, Forest, Winter, Laser, Medieval, Ancient, Sci-Fi, Steampunk and Hell. As well as that, there are ten Halloween levels and ten Christmas levels which can be played through any time of the year. Clustertruck’s level design is creative and constantly presents new challenges for you to overcome. Challenges that are far from easy to beat.

Clustertruck is a brutally difficult game, though admittedly, somewhat sporadically. Sometimes, it would take me half an hour to beat a hard, arduous level only for me to go on and beat the next level in my first couple of attempts. As well as that I found the final world, Hell, to be surprisingly easy save for the unexpected final boss. Clustertruck took me around five hours to complete, which is woefully short considering its asking price is £10.99. If you’re no stranger to parkour games, it will probably take you even less time to complete. If not for the merciless difficulty, it could easily be completed in around 2-3 hours max.

Throughout the game, you’ll earn style points. How do you earn them? Well, you get some just for completing a level, more for completing it on your first try, more for getting big airtime and more for doing tricks. How do you do tricks? Don’t ask me, I have no idea. I often beat levels with a bunch of style points from doing tricks and no idea what kind of tricks I did. As well as being used to show the world how much ‘style’ you have on the leaderboards, you can use them to purchase movement and utility abilities. There are many abilities from slowing time to grappling hooks to spawning a truck to just a simple double jump. However, you can only have one movement ability and one utility ability. These allow you to develop your own way of manoeuvring from truck to truck. Personally, I kept it simple and found great use in the combination of the double jump and time slowing ability.

While the main campaign is short-lived, there are achievements and the Steam Workshop to add more replayability. There are nineteen achievements and most of them are earned just by completing the various game worlds though some require a lot more dedication. Namely, the achievement that requires you to complete the entire game without using any abilities. If you’re a masochist then this is the perfect addition to extend your playthrough! Otherwise, the game is still small overall. There are some creative levels, but quite a lot are just ‘Easy Points’ levels to aid you in getting some of the harder achievements.

It can’t be denied that Clustertruck is a fun game. Hell, it’s trucking awesome at times. The game often makes you feel like an action hero pulling off insane stunts that shouldn’t be possible by any means. Unfortunately, although Clustertruck is thrilling, it’s sparse of content for its asking price. £10.99 is a large amount for around 4-7 hours gameplay; possibly a bit more if you’re going for the achievements or are interested in playing the levels in the game’s workshop. I suppose it’s worth its base price if you like climbing up leaderboards but that’s the only reason I ever think the price could be worth it. Nevertheless, it’s a worthy purchase when it’s on discount.

Pros:

  • Gameplay is fun and thrilling
  • Creative Level Design
  • Steam Workshop adds replayability
  • A few achievements for completionists
  • Great soundtrack
  • Abilities allow you to customise your playstyle

Cons:

  • Expensive for what it’s offering
  • Short
  • Graphics are nothing special
  • May be too difficult for some to enjoy

Verdict: 7/10

Buy the game here: http://store.steampowered.com/app/397950/Clustertruck/

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