Games of 2010: Super Crate Box

I first played this at this year’s BIGJam, where JW was showing it off and getting feedback from other designers. It’s incredibly addictive. Nobody who played it could put it down.

The basic concept is super simple; enemies spawn endlessly, but you don’t get score for shooting them – you get score by collecting crates. Each crate you collect gives you a new, random weapon, which means that every couple of seconds you’ve got to adjust to how that changes the gameplay. JW is incredibly prolific – the majority of his games he throws together in a couple of hours, but this he spent months meticulously tweaking, and it shows. This year’s IGF nominations were announced today, and I was absolutely delighted to see this get recognised for Excellence In Design.

Super Crate Box is free, and can be downloaded for Windows or Mac at http://supercratebox.com/.

* 5 Comments

5 Comments so far

  1. The Brass on January 5th, 2011

    Fun it is. I’ll be playing this for some time.

  2. StephenM3 on January 6th, 2011

    I overlooked this for a while, but I finally downloaded it today. It really is incredibly fun! I don’t know why I was so skeptical before.

  3. SquareWheel on January 7th, 2011

    Honestly, I didn’t find this game too amazing. I played for about fifteen minutes and felt like I’d seen all there was to offer. It feels like a quick flash game to me.

    Not be too critical, but I can’t believe it was nominated for IGF.

  4. The Brass on January 10th, 2011

    Starting to agree. The game has no difficulty growth, meaning that acquiring a high score is simply a matter of endurance and grind. Too often do I find myself cleverly surviving a deadly situation and gaining back control of the map, only to realise that I’m only halfway to my high score, rendering my survival meaningless.

    For a game that kills you so much, they sure found a way to make the game overs as frustrating as possible. You don’t get to see what killed you, because the screen’s covered by a black infobox and all your mines detonate simultaneously. Furthermore, the game crashing in the game over screen is a rule, not an exception. 90% of my game quits are done via the task manager’s progress tab.

    The incredibly pretentious descriptions on everything don’t help either. Those even made it to IGF, which contains no information on what the game is actually like.

  5. dyngo on January 11th, 2011

    1. Took me a couple days, but it did indeed become super addictive.

    2. Much more fun with a gamepad.

    3. Ridiculous gameplay variation: have one person control the arrows and another control the firing button. Working together to utilize the minigun, disc gun, etc. is hilarious.

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