About The Game
Journey through video game history, exploring worlds based on more than a dozen vintage gaming systems in Life of Pixel for Nintendo eShop on Wii U.
Life of Pixel takes you on a historical tour-de-force across the rich landscape of 8-bit and 16-bit gaming – from Game Boy to SNES!
There are more than a few indie games these days that focus on a graphical era of a console generation a reasonable amount of modern gamers never played.
There are probably a few reasons for the retro appearance, costs obviously play a considerable part as no doubt will the pull on nostalgia & extra sales they may bring.
It should also be remembered that a lot of the indie devs in particular creating games today grew up playing games from the 80’s and 90’s and many want to pay homage to the types of games they grew up with and inspired to get into the industry in the first place.
Life of pixel is a tribute to what many my age still look fondly back upon as a golden era.
The game is split into various worlds each based on a particular console / computer from spectrum and Atari 2600 to Gameboy , Nes Snes and many others in between.
Each of the worlds has a mini fact sheet when you select them so even if some are a bit alien to you might even learn something new along the way.
The consoles can be played in any order (a few must be unlocked) and each contain 8 levels within them.
The graphical style for each console is different and will gradually improve (I guess is the right word just about) as the consoles progress.
Likewise the music for each console is different too and a near perfect match for each generation .
The aim on each level is to collect all the gems (number varies by level) and reach the exit door.
You have 2 hearts so you can afford to get hit by an enemy once per level but a fall into a bottomless pit, touching spikes, water and such all equal an instant death.
Level size varies from very small to a few screen scrolls across but not are massively long.
In addition to the standard gems each world has a mini flashing gem that’s not required but will help unlock things should it be collected.
These gems are often placed in more difficult to reach areas but should you die after it’s been collected it will remain yours and you won’t have to attempt to grab it again.
And die you most certainly will over and over again.
Life of pixel doesn’t just pay tribute to the games of childhood in terms of presentation but it also takes serious notes on the difficulty involved too.
No check points will be found in this game if you die you go back to the start and grab all those gems again.
This for me personally is one of the most enjoyable aspects of the game, of course you could grab all the gems and die right by the exit door and have to start again.
Yes there were sections of frustration and perhaps the muttering of a word or two I’m unlikely to ever type out on this site.
But deaths were my fault.
I accept they were my fault.
I restarted that level and got those gems and made that exit and I proved to the game and myself I’m good enough to beat this thing and I’m good enough to beat it the right way!
It’s not a view or approach everyone will take.
I don’t doubt they’ll be many reviewers who’ll knock off points simply because they messed up and they had to start again.
At times some levels in the game are challenging perhaps very challenging but throughout my time with the game I never found it to be unfair.
As we use to say in the 80’s in particular if a game was too hard we got better and if we didn’t get better then he game simply beat us.
These days if the game is hard it’s all the games fault and it should have some hand holding to get you through simply madness!
So if you feel like a retro inspired challenge through the ages of consoles this is definitely a must buy.
When all the levels have been beaten the game isn't over either it has online leader boards for every single level in the game.
Achievements are present and some will take some effort to achieving while a few will come fairly naturally (Dying a set number of times seems a sure thing)
Many of the games levels have hidden fruit or items in addition to the gems many of these are hidden away behind portals or fake walls a reasonable amount of which lead to several screens of their own in the hunt for all the bonus items.
While the majority of the games levels will be completed in under 90 seconds each even if you have no desire to replay levels for the online score boards if you intend to complete this game 100% the majority of players will see several hours of game play minimum.
Not every gamer out there is a fan of the retro look and not every gamer ut there has any remote interest in games from this period of gaming.
For those players this game will offer absolutely nothing.
Likewise those that aren’t interested in an ever increasing challenge or like the prospect of restarting a level again simply because they messed up right at the end.
I was born in 1980.
I played and still own many of the consoles on show in this game.
It’s a game aimed at players like me who grew up with this kind of thing and fondly remember the looks the sounds and the challenges that came with our youth.
But it’s also a game that should suit those much younger than me who perhaps have never played a single one of the consoles on show.
Those that just want to experience a little of the past or just want to play something that offers a challenge.
Some will see this challenge as unfair and some levels are certainly designed to frustrate result in many restarts.
I don’t see it that way if your good enough you’ll get the job done and if you aren’t keep at it until you are.
That was largely the mentality of me and my friends growing up.
Gaming has moved on and opened up to a vast audience meaning that rightly or wrongly a lot of main stream games have been simplified or had easier options thrown in.
On a personal level it’s fantastic to play something that will treat me the way I want to be treated a gamer who must earn the win not a casual who gets handed it!
A review copy of the game was provided by Super Icon and reviewed in accordance with the review policy.
Was also on PlayStation Mobile / Vita