Dabbling with… Aerobat
The seventh episode of a short series on games I discovered at EGX Rezzed 2015.
FRIDAY MORNING. 11AM.
It looked so unassuming, like the li’l jam game that could. It didn’t look sultry. It looked… lonely. All the other kool kids were with the other kool games. The seat was empty. I took the seat.
I clicked the button, a plane flew off an aircraft carrier, then crashed and disintegrated into bits.
Ah, okay, here’s the tutorial.
It was a wax on, wax off kind of a moment. Fly high. Fly low. Now HURL MOUSE ACROSS THE DESK. Don’t worry Daniel-san, this isn’t Starseed Pilgrim, this is all going to click in just a moment.
I started again. A plane flew off an aircraft carrier and, this time, shot across the sea. I kept it steady, kept it together. Maybe I turned around and smiled, hoping to see the developer clap at my efforts. But he wasn’t there, there was no one there.
An alien horde slid into view and I knew just what to do. I threw the mouse across the desk. Then my plane spun into the sky and sang alien death in colours.
HELL YEAH IT CLICKED MR. MIYAGI
Then my plane hit an alien. And crashed and disintegrated into bits.
And I played again and again and again and the minutes flew by, how many, I know not, but many. You couldn’t tear me away from this thing, because I wanted to get into the top ten scores but I was too rubbish. I needed more wax on, wax off.
Matthew Yeager’s Aerobat is a game about crashing and disintegrating into bits a lot. But it’s also a game that’s about mouse violence. It might work with a touchscreen, but would bomb on a controller. Aubrey Hesselgren told me it “felt like flicking a yoyo” and he’s not wrong.
Aerobat is a true mouse game. It’s the game your mouse has been waiting for all these years.
I don’t think you looked hard enough. Look at it again. I want it. You want it. Your mouse wants it.
But you’ll have to wait as Aerobat has not been released yet. Go to the Aerobat website to find out more.
- TRI – a first-person puzzler
- The Marvellous Miss Take – polished 2D heist/stealth game
- DEEP – deep breathing meditation in VR
- Her Story – explore video footage of police interviews to solve a mystery
- CAVE! CAVE! DEUS VIDET – art-fi visual novel in which I understood nothing that was going on
- One One One Two Three – minimalist card game that plays out in minutes
- Aerobat – incredible 2D shooter, I can’t rate it highly enough
- Screencheat – wonderful local multiplayer FPS
- Planet of the Eyes – a puzzle platformer that didn’t hold my hand
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2 thoughts on “Dabbling with… Aerobat”
I didn’t get to play many games at all at rezzed, but this one was so up my alley that it had to be my favourite one of the show. I think there’s still so much more to be done with the “knack” of controlling games. This is so simple and so focussed on getting that just right. I noticed that the 120hz+ frame rate is a real statement to take the kinaesthetic aspect seriously
Hey Aubrey! There are so many orthogonal dimensions to games that one can apply focus to – “game feel”, systems design, narrative design. Aerobat reminds me of the work of Vlambeer, so heavily polished on the game feel front. I’ve never felt a mouse to be part of play as much as it did here. Mice have been so “derided” in the past but this really plays to its strengths and isn’t an FPS!
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