Publisher: Widget Revolt
Ice Tales HD is a retro action puzzler game where you play as Pendleton, a penguin that has been wrongfully placed in the middle of nowhere. You job is to keep Pendleton alive and get him home by collecting various objects but more importantly, by avoiding certain objects.
Each level consists of a map of ice blocks that create a mini maze. The ways the maps are built make controlling the penguin a bit difficult. You control Pendleton by swiping across the screen. The faster you can flick the faster he moves. You can also make him jump by tapping the screen; this will come in handy when trying to get around obstacles. Overall the controls take a bit of getting used to and could have been a little less twitchy.
Each level has one goal, to collect as many starfish as possible. Along with starfish each level has a fish bucket (we all know penguins love to eat fish) that will give you tons of points once you get to it, but get to it quickly because seagulls will show up and cause problems. So far things sound pretty easy going in the life of Pendleton, right? Well not so fast. Pendleton isn’t the only one after the starfish. Crabs, seals, bears, and squids are all out to get Pendleton so beware.
The retro-ness of the game really comes out in the graphics and audio. Right away you notice the graphics being a little…dated. But hey, that’s retro! Right? And then I heard the in game audio and WOW it blew me away. I actually started loudly laughing in public. It is very retro. The beeps and bloops really create a great feel for the retro game.
Aesthetically speaking this game is definitely a blast from the past but in my opinion, a good retro game needs to have a bit of a modern twist built in. Unfortunately, that twist seems to be missing in Ice Tales HD and it’s not very different from 8-bit games twenty years ago. That’s not to say it isn’t fun. Just that there’s nothing unique about it that helps it stand out.