Picture of Matthew Groves

Matthew Groves


Crane Simulator 2009

Weapon of mass construction.

Not 20 yards from my house is a penned-off area which the council, judging by the logo-festooned barriers, has clearly commissioned a contractor to work on. It's basically a big hole in the road, and has gone untended for some four or five days now. Every time I walk past on my way to work, two emotions resume their daily struggle.

Gridrunner Revolution

Baa Wars: A New Hope.

"Fluuuffy Sheeepy!" drones the eighties synth-box voice as, two minutes into the current level, I collect my 12th upgrade-sheep. The frequent repetition has me parroting the voice after the event, trying to perfect the tone and timbre. But this is no time to pause and feel daft. I'm way too busy strafing waves of procedurally generated sprites with artful, calligraphic sprays of fire from my ship's cannons. Gridrunner Revolution keeps you so very busy manipulating its physical laws and countering the varied approaches of its baddies, you can't really give the infectious ambient soundscape your undivided attention - you just have to sit there and let it do things to you. This is precisely the effect developer Jeff Minter wants to create. And in this case, the result is gently if pleasingly embarrassing.