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Roogoo Review

Roogoo pack shot
Developer:SpiderMonk Entertainment
Publisher:SouthPeak
Genre:Puzzle
Platform:Xbox 360
Official Site:http://www.southpeakgames.com/../Roogoo.html
Release Date:June 4th, 2008 (UK)
Reviewer:Andy Hemphill (Bandit)
 

Remember that toy from your childhood? The one where you had to fit different shaped blocks through a wooden board, matching star to star and square to square? Well if you were a big fan then this game is definitely for you.

Roogoo, being an XBLA game, isn't big on plot, but it does do exactly what it says on the download- simple puzzle action. It is the electronic equivalent of that childhood toy, cute graphics and all, but hidden behind the trees and tiny smiles of the digitised characters is one of the most fiendishly addictive puzzle games I've ever played. To be honest, it's like being hooked on crack cocaine, and the plot seems to match that with its total weirdness.

Roogoo screenshot 1 Roogoo screenshot 2 Roogoo screenshot 3 Roogoo screenshot 4

For the benefits of the next part of this review, just imagine I'm making the "speech mark" signs with my two forefingers every time you read a word in italics. The cute teddy bear like 'Roogoo' of the planet Roo rely on joyful meteors that fall from space to give them hope and love and happiness. But one day, evil Roogoo King Moo decided to use the power of the meteors to build massive cities. All was well for a while, then the meteor's corrupted power turned him and his followers into evil 'Meemoo.'

As one of the remaining Roogoo, you've got to help the joyful meteors reach the planet's core and keep them out of the hands of the king's son, Prince Moo, who hovers at the side of the map in a tiny UFO waiting to steal all the joyful meteors. Now, before you decide to go and kill yourself, I have to point out that despite the idiotic plot and cutesy graphics, there is a fairly good game here and I found myself wanting to try and beat each level time and time again, no matter how often I was making mistakes.

Roogoo screenshot 5 Roogoo screenshot 6 Roogoo screenshot 7 Roogoo screenshot 8

The basic idea is to get several sets of shapes from the top to the bottom of the 'map.' To get these shapes down you have to make them pass through a series of disks with the corresponding shapes cut into them. Rather than relying on the D-pad, Roogoo makes you use the shoulder buttons of the Xbox remote to turn the disks so that the shapes (which you can't control) pass through. If you miss, the shapes bounce off into space and are lost, so if you've got a little tower of shapes going and you haven't aligned a disk properly you can loose them all, and every shape you loose brings you closer to defeat.

Evil Meemoo sometimes appear on the platforms and you have to use the falling shapes to knock them out of the way, sending them into oblivion with a cute squeal of unhappiness. Simple, but annoyingly addictive.

As well as the single player mode, Roogoo also features a small multiplayer mode where you can play head to head against other gamers. However, being an XBLA game, there's barely anyone ever on. I tried for three days to get the multiplayer to work and couldn't even find one other person who had purchased the game.

And that's the main problem with Roogoo- the price. The game costs 800 Microsoft points, which is an awful lot for such a simple puzzle game when you can get a half decent shooter like 'Commando's' for the same price. If the price was a little lower, say 300 Points, then I think this could be a good seller if you're a fan of simple puzzle games, or cute creatures.

Now excuse me while I funnel these stars through a series of concentric rings while knocking Meemoo flying. Roogoo, I want my life back!

The bottom line
6.0 / 10

Good stuff

  • Simple, fun and easy to play
  • Roogoos and Meemoos are so damn cute!
  • Tonnes of levels and challenges

Not so good stuff

  • Infuriatingly addictive
  • No one plays multiplayer
  • … Plot?


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