This time comes in form of sort of a platform game from 4 man team from Russia called Brainy Studio, that inspired themselves on the World Wildlife Fund's Earth Hour, which annually involves making people conscious about saving energy by turning off lights and electrical appliances for one hour. A bit of a curious one, and a game I hardly heard about of before but after playing it my (honestly) low expectations were thankfully washed away.
TurnON is a bit of a mix between platform and puzzle game where we must help a little electric spark in a quest to restore the city's power after a starnge accident in the power plant which engulfed said city in darkness. The game is presented with almost no dialogue and at start it might be somewhat confusing to understand what is going on but things are kept simple enough on the first levels so that the mechanics are introduced nice and sweetly to the player. You guide this spark through cable lines thus lighting and powering be it lamp posts or entire houses all the way. There are little lightning symbols that are collectible to rack up the final score and besides all that there are little special situations on which we help people that were left in trouble because of the sudden darkness. We can help a little girl return home or a couple reuniting or even get a birthday party restarted after everything went down.
The game follows kind of a comic book feel with its cutscenes and it maintains the appealing visuals in-game. While the levels might seem somewhat bland at first, things change when we start lighting up the place. You see, what once was a darkened scenario suddenly breathes new life as you guide the little spark through the lines. And honestly it's really pleasant to watch the streets and houses and such gain "life". Even though graphically the game might look somewhat simple it's the charming colors and lighting that makes up for that bringing such a pleasing game to look at.
Let's help these fellows continue playing their game.
While quite simple, it does have some nice intrincacies. Basically a platformer, you guide the spark jumping on power cables mainly. As you encounter posts you light them up. As you encounter some houses, either you light them up completely and move on or (in some) you go inside and take care of powering up a few more things thus helping people out. Funny to see how many supposedly simple things in life can be almost vital to us without us even knowing or appreciating them. The controls are rather simple throughout the game only the puzzles getting a little more complicated towards the end. But overall the game keeps a relaxing mood constantly without frustrating the gameplay. There game sometimes throws a few "on rails" levels at us which can be a little more tricky and curiously on these levels the controls don't seem quite as responsive as in the normal ones though.
Such a charming game deserves a nice little charming soundtrack and that is presicely the case here. While we traverse levels we are graced with nice relaxing music that complements the visuals nicely. This is no violent killing game or any of that. Here we help people by re-offering them one of their basic needs nowadays and the soundtrack shows it. You will hear plenty of zapping and electrical noises from start to end though so be warned. Another thing I didn't quite like but understand due to this being a low budget game is the absense of any dialogue. Even the humans that appear seem to only communicate with "humms" that are variead according to their state of mind.
The level select in the game
Value for money
A bit unfair this one. While the game is fun and visually charming and, honestly, a bit different from many games, this is only a single player game that while it will take a few hours to complete, after that there's not much more incentive to go back unless you have a few levels you know you can repeat to improve your score upon. I feel the price tag could benefit the game if just a tad lower but in the other hand its creators deserve to be rewarded with the nice work done here.
TurnON is a nice little surprise made by only four people. The work done here is a visually charming game that calls for a relaxing, puzzle solving, platforming time. A bit of a shame its length is not the longest but the experience, while it lasts, is very worth it. It is full of nice ideas and it is simply a nice game overall to play. Some replayability is there actually, in form of most achievements being linked to getting 3 "stars" or lightning bolts in this case but other than that after finishing the game there is really not much to go back to. A nice game to play on a break from all the more violent online games out there and on lazy afternoons when you just want to replax for a bit. Recommended.
Nice visuals and lighting
Final score: 7.5
- Relaxing charming gameplay
- Visuals improve upon traversing the levels with lighting and colors
- Achievements make us work for them
- No other modes besides single player
- The on-rails levels seem not as responsive as the normal ones
- A few glitches here and there
- 4.48 GB
- Brainy Studio LLC
- Brainy Studio LLC
- Action & Adventure, Family, Platformer, Puzzle & Trivia