Game Info

INK is a fast-paced, abstract platformer about discovering the world around you, using paint. It is a small, but challenging game that Zack Bell put together post-Ludem Dare 32 upon seeing Dittomat's game entry. INK is currently only available on the Windows platform. Keyboard and Gamepad controls are supported.

TL;DR?

Individual Ratings

Enjoyment

As a full discloser I actually was eagerly awaiting the release of this game. I watched it come to be on Twitter with bated breath. Both the ascetics and the gameplay really piqued my interest. When it was finally released I picked it up as soon as I could. I expected, from the creator’s description, that I’d be able to quickly beat it in an hour or so. However, I’m glad to say that was not the case. This game demanded that I play it for a few 45 minute sessions and almost every second I was happy to do so. It is a hard game. Not Super Meat Boy destroy your fingers hard but it certainly is not easy. I like hard games. That mixed with the tight controls and interesting gameplay and you got yourself a solid game. That doesn’t mean it’s without problems. Though the controls are pretty spot on 95% of the time, I did find myself dying a few times when the player just did something unexpected. Sometimes leaving a bad taste in my mouth. In a hard game like INK that is never a good thing. However, it was never so bad that it totally ruined the experience. Thought that is the main reason for the score in this category.

Gameplay

As mentioned prior the gameplay is definitely interesting. Although we have seen a similar mechanic used before, INK definitely put its own spin on the “use paint to uncover areas of the map” trope. It felt as if I was truly exploring. It gave a similar feeling as exploring a cave with a small flashlight. However, I must say that the feeling of uncertainty and isolation is quick to go away. As soon as you die a few times in the level it becomes mostly revealed and stays that way. The paint is permanent so it changes from an exploratory platformer to simply another platformer. Although this is not exactly a bad thing, seeing as the platforming in the game is amazing as well. But, it still makes me miss the feeling that the beginning of each level gives you.

Graphical Aesthetic

The aesthetic for this game is great. It simply is pretty to look at, in fact I found myself sitting there every once and a while looking at the beautiful mess I had created on the screen. It was clear the color pallet and the way the color splashes on the walls was tweaked till it was as pleasing to the eyes as it could possibly be. Even the menus carry the theme of the game perfectly. It just oozes polish. The screenshots should speak for themselves...

Sound Aesthetic

The audio was nothing special but it did the job. It didn't get on my nerves and helped me get sucked into the game. I only found myself getting distracted by it a few times. Overall nothing special but nothing bad, just average.

Verdict : (?)

INK was an enjoyable game! It was a refreshing take on the paint the environment trope and a great platformer. With it's stunning graphics and tight controls it should be a contender for your time!