TribeQuest: Red Killer is one of many mobile ports to be hitting Steam. Will it be able to escape the trap so many other ports fall into?
There are times in which I like to go out on a limb to try out a new Early Access title on Steam. TribeQuest: Red Killer came out almost a week ago, and thus far it has had absolutely no reviews. Considering it was only .99 I decided to go for it and check it out, and now that I’m here writing about it, I have walked away not very impressed.
In Red Killer your objective is to get rid of all the evil red blocks and save all of the green blocks. The game doesn’t describe this to you at all. The only real “hint” you get is the game’s title, even though there are “hints” at the start of each level. These hints are so obscure that it’s hard to really make much sense of them. It says you’re supposed to “save the cute ones”, but honestly… the “rabbits” in the green blocks weren’t really that cute to me.
Red Killer lacks any sort of tutorial. As I said, you just get thrown into a level with no explanation at all. Really, Red Killer simply lacks a lot outside of the levels with their poorly worded hint boxes (that also feature bad grammar and English). There is an initial launcher that comes with the game, but don’t really expect for this to do much.
Speaking of the launcher, when you launch the game you are given the option to set your resolution to a wide variety of options. The thing is, the game will still have bars on the side should you choose any widescreen option. If your game is not going to feature actual widescreen – something that’s actually surprising to me since this is a mobile port – then don’t have the option for widescreen resolutions. All this really does is make your work look lazy.
The game itself is a physics puzzler in which you’ll need to solve the puzzles using said physics. What you’ll quickly come to find is that these physics are pretty poor and often don’t function the way they should.There were so many times in which blocks were left hanging in ways that should’ve been impossible, and this also sometimes caused me to end up having to redo a level. When so much of your game relies on having a good, working physics engine, make sure it actually works.
Right now the game features a total of 40 levels. This is fully completable in under 40 minutes, even with getting stuck on levels. This does at least fall into my “worth the money” area in terms of length for price, though for other reasons that I’ve stated I’m not sure if it’s actually worth the money right now. The other thing to consider is that this game is free on mobile. While I haven’t tested the Android version to know 100% for certain, I could pretty much go get the same game I paid .99 for for free over on the Google Play Store.
Presentation on the Steam Page is worth a lot for actually marketing your game. I don’t often comment about the Steam Page in my writing, but for this game I feel it necessary. Right now, the trailer featured on there is around 3 years old. The screenshots don’t even match up to what is seen in the trailer (they are closer to the game you’ll get), and some of the screenshots are just a broken image of the Red Killer text! The “trailer” in question is also just a bunch of failing at a level and doesn’t really work well to sell the game to the consumer. My tip here to the developer is to get a more accurate trailer, and one that actually works to try and sell your game.
As it stands right now, TribeQuest: Red Killer is yet another poor mobile port on Steam. I do feel that if the physics are cleaned up and if the English is fixed that the game has quite a bit of potential at being a good puzzle game. I also feel that cleaning up the actual presentation of the game in terms of the store page is something that should really be done as it will greatly help in marketing this game to more people. Also, make sure that people can actually quit out of the game. After I had finished playing, the “Quit” button did not actually work for me, causing me to have to just X out of the game instead.
TribeQuest: Red Killer Initial Thoughts
It needs a lot of cleaning up but I feel it has potential. To the developer, use the time in Early Access to fix your physics, fix your presentation, and make this not look like just another very bad mobile port. Right now, it really is just another very bad mobile port that is only serving to clog up the Steam storefront.