ibb & obb is an incredible experience in two player, co-operative platforming / puzzle adventuring which will have you laughing at times, doesn’t require a mic to be enjoyed online, and has an equally fascinating (though slightly less playable) single player game mode. Controlling either ibb or obb, you’ll run into platforming puzzles that will at first have you stumped. Quickly through either trial and error or logical rationalizing, you and your partner will find your way through each level and grow to appreciate the simplicity of ibb & obb’s gameplay design. Figuring out how to use each element of gameplay, which is introduced one at a time, is definitely part of the fun. From jump-pads to character-specific portals you’ll have to master all of these in-game mechanics in order to advance.
The basic concept of ibb & obb is simple. You play in a 2D world and any time each of the characters hits a portal the gravity reverses. This means that what is the floor for you, is the floor for me, but we’re on opposite sides of it. There will be times one character must stand on the other and leap off at the highest point of their jump in order to get what is essentially a double-jump accomplished. Obstacles are deadly on one side of the level, but vanquishable from the other. This leaves one character eliminating enemies and the other collecting the reward (points that they spill out in the form of quickly vanishing white blocks). This is just the beginning of the madness as subtle changes in the level design add to the complexity of what is required to pass.
Without spoiling every part of the design which you’ll come across, I will name a few of the more interesting ones. Players find themselves climbing over objects, running under deadly automated enemy clusters, and making gigantic leaps of faith in order to land with as much force as possible on the bounce pads which give a player waiting patiently on the other side the kinetic energy needed to propel to an otherwise inaccessible area of the stage. If you don’t have a mic plugged in you can simple use the right analog stick to draw on the screen what you want the other player to do. This comes in handy big time in the online mode, though the game is likely best suited for local co-op multiplayer sessions.
If you dare to boot up the single player, you’ll find that you control both characters yourself at the same time with one character’s actions assigned to each analog stick and jumping becomes up and down on the corresponding analog stick rather than the action button on your controller’s face buttons which for PlayStation 3 was of course the X button. This can be extremely confusing and is only recommended for advanced players or people who just really want to try out the game but don’t have a friend and/or internet connection at the moment. Although difficult to play this way, it’s pretty great that the developers provided this mode just for those offline moments when you find yourself desiring an abnormally challenging run through of ibb & obb’s unique puzzles and gameplay.
Visual Art Direction and Graphics in this game are simple but beautiful. You will instantly be drawn to the game and want to play it. Everyone who watched me play for the first time while performing a livestream was immediately asking “What game is this?” and fascinated by the perfectly matched graphics and gameplay ibb & obb offers. This is definitely a game that life long gamers will appreciate and the graphics do a good job of making it feel unique and stand out from other games.
The soundtrack of the game will often remind you of older titles such as Super Mario Bros. but never crosses the line on copying such games. The soft and melodic tunes set the mood perfectly and help to keep you calm. Even when the game’s puzzles sometimes frustrate you, the music will gently guide your sensibilities into more positive thinking. You’ll find yourself trying to spell out “LOL” with the right analog stick when you’re doing good and creating “?” (question marks) when you don’t understand the other player’s intentions. This peaceful and collaborative atmosphere is made possible entirely by the music and soft sound effects in the game.
Replay Value: High – Endless times this game can be experienced with new friends who haven’t tried it yet as well as the promise of attempting single player mastery using dual character control on both analog sticks. Is it even possible? There’s only one way to find out.
Engine Performance: Flawless – Absolutely no glitches were encountered during our play-through of ibb & obb on the PS3.
Final Verdict: ibb & obb is probably one of the most original games I’ve played on PlayStation 3 in a very long time. Managing to become a puzzle-based, co-operative centered experience but feeling like something completely brand new, ibb & obb is highly recommended by the RealGamerNewz crew. This game earns itself a 9 out of 10 and becomes a Gold Game on the RGN Rating system citing the only issue with it is that although its simplicity is admirable there could have been slightly more things to do and more enemies / obstacles to face. We look forward to the next project from the creators of ibb & obb and will keep our eyes peeled for it. Definitely look into this if you’re looking for something fresh and bored of your current game library.
Overall Score: 9/10
RGN Rating: Gold Game
Developers / Publisher: Sparpweed / Codeglue
Available On: PlayStation 3
Review Copy Info- A digital copy of the game was provided to RealGamerNewz by the publisher for the purpose of this review.
Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jon Ireson on 20130814 and was last modified on 20130814 .