3D platform games do not go through their best moment, but there are still companies that bet on this classic genre. The Spanish studio Drakhar based in Madrid is one of them, who offers us a new representative of the genre. We analyze Ginger: Beyond the Crystal.
Super Mario 64, one of the best games in history (the second in my opinion), marked a before and after in the era of 3D platform games. After him, all the companies were encouraged to create dozens and dozens of exponents of the genre, a situation similar to what we live today replacing the words Super Mario 64 with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and 3D platforms with first-person shooters.
Everything has changed today and this genre, like many others, has been quite forgotten and plunged into the background … for me totally unbearable. But fortunately for all of us who continue to feel a special predilection for this genre, there are still studies (few, that is true) that want to revive this style of titles.
The plot of this adventure is more careful than usual in the genre and, in fact, has a narrator in perfect Spanish and everything. Everything revolves around crystals of power that, by the work of a mysterious character, have been distributed all over the world and, in addition, have lost their brightness. To solve this situation, that is, to find the crystals and purify them, a goddess of the forest gives life to Ginger, a character hardly describable who possesses certain powers. And so begins this platform odyssey, which never reaches extremely high levels of fun but it is entertaining, especially for less-skilled players and, more specifically, for the smallest of the house.
Throughout a good shipment of levels divided into different worlds (villages, rather) that serve as HUB, we must find these crystals and, also, the inhabitants of each region. And the way to do it is usual in this type of title, that is, bypassing platform platforms, enemies and the occasional puzzle. Among other abilities that Ginger possesses, this character can disguise himself in various ways, which allows him to learn new movements and attacks that, many times, are usually the key to unlocking certain secrets.
In this way and although it is a very guided adventure, it is true that we wanted to print a certain degree of backtracking (but slight) that adds some freshness to the title but come on, we insist that it is not about the game more adult or challenging in the world.
Precisely and except for the occasional occasion, the title seemed like a walk. You can graduate the difficulty, it is true, but despite that, it shows that it is a game designed especially for children. And because? Because everything is very simple, in excess in many cases. From the combats to the sections of platforms and others, all sins of having been reflected with too much simplicity. In addition and despite the fact that the phases are quite varied within what fits, they are all quite short and, in some cases, somewhat insulous. Defects that the little ones can ignore or even thank … but that the most tanned users will find too serious.
You can graduate the difficulty, but the game is very easy.
Obviously the control system is also very simple, and three buttons are enough to perform almost all the actions that can be done with Ginger. The handling responds quite well, something that encourages playability, but it is also true that I thought that the protagonist is a more limited character than would be desirable.
Another unequivocal proof that we are facing a children’s game is its aesthetic approach. All the games of Nintendo, TT Games, Activision and other companies belonging to this same genre, as well as the Rare classics and many other examples that I could give you have always opted to create colorful environments and characters cheerful and childish cut … but in the case of this work, everything has been exaggerated. Pastel colors everywhere, enemies of anything but intimidating and other “soft” elements perfectly commune with the child’s orientation of the title. Of course, I have not missed several graphic defects that drag the game, including the more or less usual drops in the frame rate suffered by the PS4 version. But it is also true that it has no impact on the development of the title … and that this problem does not happen in the PC edition.
The sound section has been quite better resolved, in my opinion, the best of the title. The scores sound a bit like the same ones we heard in the aforementioned classic Rare platform works, although they do not reach the quality achieved by the composers of this company.
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3D child cutting platforms by the Spanish studio Drakkar. Ginger: Beyond the Crystal is not a memorable work under any circumstances and, in fact, has much room for improvement. But given the shortage of productions of this same style is not a despicable title, especially for the little ones, who will surely overlook the ups and downs that adventure has in many fields, technical and playable.
- Attractive playable approach, very classic
- Obvious winks to works like Super Mario Galaxy or Crash Bandicoot
- Very colorful and cheerful aesthetics
- The development ends up becoming something repetitive and lacking interest
- Many levels have seemed too basic and generic
- Characters and enemies lacking personality